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the best kind of viral video

Yesterday, Samsung unveiled their 105 inch curved 4K HDTV at the annual CES (Consumer Electronics Show) in Las Vegas. They had recruited Hollywood director & producer Michael Bay to give a talk on the TV but not in their wildest dreams could they have predicted the level of publicity the talk would get…

You see, the presentation was a bit of a car crash presentation. Bay was given a Hollywood blockbuster intro, complete with dramatic music as he was introduced on stage. He initially appeared like a bad-ass… powerful body language and a clearly well rehearsed opening line – “I get to dream for a living”…

He then looks at the host because (we later find out) the teleprompter crashes. He had tried to ‘wing it’ after the teleprompter broke but the pressure and attention clearly paralyzed him and prevented him from answering any questions on the product. Michael ended up panicking and awkwardly walking off stage, apologising while doing so.

Socially awkward penguin meme comes to mind…

Why it’s gold

Firstly, melting under the pressure is completely normal. Anyone can have a bad day and freeze up. If things go wrong and you’ve no plan B it can be difficult to to just ‘wing it’ when you’ve a live audience in a big room staring at you and cameras pointed at your face.

In this situation, most people would probably stumble their way through a conversation about the TV and why it’s great… being able to present on the spot and capture an audience is a rare skill not many people posses, particularly if they’re not used to presenting. So whilst it’s easy to poke fun and laugh, i’d imagine not many of us could handle this situation without breaking sweat.

Michael seemed to brush it off quickly and even joked about which is good to see. Ironically, this non-presentation has actually resulted in heaps more publicity for Samsung than they could have ever dreamed about. This is best kind of viral publicity / video – something that nobody could ever have planned or commissioned. We expect a boring presentation about how great this TV is and what we get is a big Hollywood name showing that he’s human… empathy kicks in and combined with the humour / shock / awkwardness of it all, it gets people emotional… which is ultimately why this has gone viral and why i’m talking about it… we can relate to Michael, we feel sorry for him here yet we can’t overlook the fact this is just a hilarious presentation gone wrong.

Bravo, Michael Bay – it may not have been intentional, yet it’s still a sort of genius marketing campaign for Samsung. Even though the TV wasn’t talked about at all, everyone now knows about it. Job done.

Sean MacEntee

Web Developer. Technology Addict. Swimmer. Man Utd Fan. Writer. Designer.