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Content Marketing Campaign of the Week: Dollar Shave Club

If you’re in marketing and haven’t seen the Dollar Shave Club “Our Blades are F***ing Great” video, you might want to consider a career change. This video has been revered since it came out in March 2012. Why? In two days, a 90-second online video that cost $4500 received:

  • 9.5 million views
  • 23,000 Twitter followers
  • 76,000 Facebook fans
  • 12,000 new customers

I’d say that’s pretty successful ROI. So why did a video about razors go viral and garner a significant amount of new customers? Let’s break it down.

Immediate Product Information

Within 10 seconds you know the company and what product it offers. THANK YOU! How many artsy or exciting commercials do you see that don’t even tell you what the product is until the end? Yes, yes, it’s a preference of whether you want anticipation or to know up front what you’re seeing. I clearly prefer the latter. Throughout the commercial, they also compare their product to fancy razors that are more expensive with silly “shave tech” features. Not to mention that Dollar Shave Club razors are “so simple a toddler can use it.”

Attention grabbing

After you find out about the product and company, the first value proposition is that their “blades are f***ing great.” Although they may have sliced a small portion of their audience at that point (some moms who buy their sons’ razors and men who don’t like the f-bomb), that was assuredly a conscious decision by Dollar Shave Club. The nonchalant and ballsy attitude seems to be the company culture and image, and they certainly didn’t stray from that.

Charismatic spokesperson

Even though he doesn’t smile, there is an immediate likability factor to this young president of Dollar Shave Club. And Mike is actually the president (and a member). He’s attractive, has a pleasant tone, and although purposely sarcastic and self-deprecating, you get the feeling he’s truly a funny person. Who wouldn’t want to play tennis with him?

Emotional connection

Whether your cup of tea is nostalgia, humor, intelligence, patriotism or social issues, there’s something for everyone:

  • The handsome grandfather who had one razor AND Polio
  • The awkward, misplaced bear mascot
  • Job creation for Alejandro
  • Vanderbilt reference to business success
  • Dance party at the end with American flag

What about after this viral video sensation? Since the first wave of success with increased customers, Dollar Shave Club added to their subscription base with 330,000 total customers as of October 2013. At that time they had three products:  razors, shaving cream, and wipes for your bottom (featured in their Video #2, which also went viral in June 2013). But we all know that one medium doesn’t equal continued customer loyalty. How do they keep engaging their customers?

In an All Things D interview, Dollar Shave Club President Mike Dubin said their “goal is to have people look at Dollar Shave Club as a men’s lifestyle brand,” and he knows they will need to continue creating new content not only for advertising, but to inform and entertain. With this in mind, their activity on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest reflects their sarcastic brand voice while entertaining audience members. From featuring a new clothing brand on their blog that aligns with their core audience to poking fun at their competitors in-store displays on Facebook, they are producing relevant and interesting content.



Thanks to a significant capital investment (no doubt the investors were impressed by the first success of razors), they also plan on expanding their product portfolio for 7 to 12 other bathroom related items, all of which should be under $20. I can’t wait to see what they come up with next, but for now, I’ll take their entertaining videos. I might even buy my dad a subscription after relating to their targeted Father’s Day video ad campaign. Linked below for your enjoyment as well.

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