Happy Hump Day, everyone! In this week’s CAP 105 class we took a closer look into what makes a video go viral using the example of The Blair Witch Project. Additionally, we discussed the features of popular products-S.T.E.P.P.S.
The Blair Witch Project, possibly the best found-footage movie out there. It’s the one that launched the particular movie style into stardom. It scared movie-goers everywhere during the twilight of the 90’s and I’m sure it does so to this day but only to an extent. What made this “amateur” looking film so famous? How did it murder the box office? Why did/do people find it so frightening?
It’s marketing campaign was incredibly successful! It was completely done on the internet. Yes, the plain ol’ internet. Hard to believe there was a time before Facebook and Twitter and an app plagued world. The creators of the film made the official movie site like a crime-scene, complete with faux police interviews and missing person reports. They put up missing person posters of the cast at various festival venues and so forth, ultimately luring the public into their master scheme. The movie was scary for its time. IT WAS (and still can be) BELIEVABLE! You take unknown actors, a hand-held camera, and an improvised script, and BOOM-it’s like you’re watching reality unfold on the big screen. The cast was legitimately scared by people hiding in the woods during filming to enhance the convincing effect of their terror. The fact that audiences thought what they were seeing was real boosted the film’s box office revenue sky-high. A budget of $60000 grossing nearly $250 million!! Click here to check out the trailer of the original Blair Witch (Youtube, 2016).
And now onto some information you can’t find on Wikipedia, S.T.E.P.P.S. The acronym for: Social Currency, Trigger, Emotion, Public, Practical Value, Stories. They are the building blocks in what makes a product popular. Social Currency- is when you show off something to make you look good, so when you see everyone sharing that A.S.P.C.A. commercial on Facebook and you join in the trend, it makes you look like you really care, right? Trigger- is mnemonic device that helps one remember the product-when Kit-Kat did their coffee campaign, for example. Emotion-simply,the feelings the product evokes, the more positive the better. Public-The trend, fad, obsession, etc. It’s what everyone else is doing-check out this Ed, Edd n Eddy episode as an example (Youtube, 2016). Practical Value means “is the product helpful?” Does it have a lasting appeal? And Stories is how the product can be of relevance in an entertaining story.
That’s pretty much the sum of this weeks class. I have a project now assigned to me that I’l be talking more about in the coming weeks and it’d going to be a lot of fun! Thanks for reading everyone and if you wish to get a hold of me for whatever reason-feel free! Until next week!