There's a fast-talking, flannel-wearing Southern guy who says he has the perfect product to save your broken stuff, your ruined weekend or even your marriage. Oh, and it's 100 times tougher than duct tape and "strong as steel."
Would you shell out $50 for that? You will if you're a manly man, says the new ad for FiberFix that's racked up 3 million Facebook views in a single day with no paid media to support it.
The five-minute, tongue-in-cheek digital evolution of the traditional infomercial comes from the Harmon Brothers, the Utah-based team behind Squatty Potty's mega-viral "Pooping Unicorn," Poopourri's "Girls Don't Poop" and Orabrush's "Diary of a Dirty Tongue."
Media buys are just starting for the short film, dubbed, "Redneck drives duct tape car over cliff," a bit of a red-herring name derived from the extended opening scene in which a Geo Metro survives an epic crash only because of its FiberFix-reinforced roll cage. The duct-taped car doesn't fare so well.
Other highlights of this wacky video: a cameo by the spokesman's familiar-looking wife, an adorable puppy, a diversified investment portfolio and an inexplicably sexy plumber.
Actor and comedian Jason Gray, from improv company Studio C in Provo, provides the backbone of the video, which starts with a demolition experiment and then shifts to product how-to, with lots of ridiculous twists and asides delivered in a winning straight-ahead deadpan.
"Our idea was to take everything that's good about an infomercial, get rid of everything that's bad, and make it wildly entertaining," said Jeffrey Harmon.
Harmon said his team had been using the "strong as steel" FiberFix product for a few months while brainstorming ideas for the ad. When he repaired his battered sprinklers and posted the handiwork on his personal Facebook page with the hashtag, #SaturdaySaved, the massive response provided the ad's framework. "We got a picture of what makes this demo tick," he said.
The team shot the opening of the video near Utah Lake in an abandoned rock quarry, then shifted to a garage where Gray could show step-by-step how FiberFix can solve a multitude of manly (or womanly) problems.
FiberFix, also based in Utah, was (like Harmon Brothers client Squatty Potty) featured on the ABC inventor series Shark Tank a few years ago, and has since grown into a $10 million business. It's available in about 35,000 retailers like hardware and home improvement stores. But this is the company's first significant ad push, with the Harmon team aiming for an "evergreen" video that could have a long life as a piece of entertainment.
"The mentality in the ad world is that five minutes is too long, but people will watch and share if it's punchy," Jeffrey Harmon said. "The real test will be sales—does it make people click and buy?"