It seems like only yesterday that anyone with eyes and an Internet connection was consumed by The Harlem Shake video craze. Celebrities, sports teams, politicians and regular people jumped on board the trend and millions upon millions of these videos were viewed. Pepsi’s Harlem Shake video brought in 7.3 million views on YouTube alone. Then, as with most social trends, it was over in the blink of an eye. Now, there’s a new sheriff in town!
Chances are if you’ve been anywhere near social media in the last week or so, you’ve seen a #MannequinChallenge video. Quite the anti-Harlem Shake, rather than everyone in the video shakin’ their money maker, everyone picks a pose and stays perfectly still while the camera pans around the scene. Usually while playing Black Beatles by Rae Sremmurd. It is believed that the phenomenon was started by students in Jacksonville, Florida on October 12, 2016. The more impressive videos have featured very well trained dogs, and people in what surely must be very uncomfortable positions.
These viral content trends have proven to be valuable marketing tools, and plenty of brands have created their own #MannequinChallenge video. Some notable contributions have been from QLD Police, Adidas (with hip-hop artist Desiigner), Hillary Clinton’s campaign team, Ellen DeGeneres at The White House, and one epic video from Perth Wildcats where a whole arena managed to stay still for the shot. Even Destiny’s Child briefly reunited for a quick Mannequin Challenge.
Trends like these don’t come around every day, and they’re a huge opportunity for brands to extend their reach. While some are completely uninterested with brand content popping up on their Facebook feeds, if it’s a Mannequin Challenge, an Ice Bucket Challenge or a Harlem Shake, their thumb is far more likely to stop. It’s a creative execution we already know they love. The key is to hop on board before it’s too late, because blink, and it’ll be gone!