The Drum Awards Festival - Official Deadline

-d -h -min -sec

How Three and Wieden + Kennedy scored a viral smash thanks to a dancing pony

By Mel Peck

March 8, 2013 | 4 min read

Mel Peck from the Viral Ad Network picks out the highlights from The Drum's Viral Video Chart and looks at how a dancing pony and Fleetwood Mac helped Three to the top trending spot this week.

The Harlem Shake dominated the Viral Chart for most of last month, but this week it looks like there’s another dance craze sweeping across the interweb, and it’s a little Shetland pony who’s behind it all.

The new ad from Three Mobile has shot straight to the top of the most shared branded videos this week with over 3 million views and a quarter of a million shares.

The ad, which was created by Wieden + Kennedy, features Socks, a charming one pony dance sensation, moonwalking across the Scottish highlands to the tune of Fleetwood Mac’s hit single, Everywhere. Of course, the internet always loves a good dose of cute, and the 5-year-old little Shetland certainly ticks that box, but the ad is also a great example of a brand celebrating the nation's love of sharing quirky content. Using the strap line, ‘silly stuff, it matters’, Three has released a Pony Mixer app alongside the video, to encourage viewers to get involved and create their own customised version of the dance to share with friends. There’s already a string of Pony Dance mixes circulating YouTube and the ad is generating quite a buzz across social media channels using the #DancePonyDance hashtag.Unsurprisingly, any viral success is almost certainly going to become fodder for some kind of parody video, and with the recent media hype about the horse meat scandal, there are some pretty obvious comedy angles in this one. Cue The Pony Dance Sequel, produced by popular YouTube channel The Poke. (Pony fans beware: this ending isn’t quite as happy as the first one.)Also trending this week is the Oreo Separator Machine. Continuing the Cookie Vs Crème debate that was launched on Instagram and Twitter last month, the brand has released a series of YouTube mockumentaries following the invention of an ingenious cookie separation device.

The first instalment (shown above) features talented ‘physicist’ David Neevel, (copywriter at Widen + Kennedy, the agency behind the campaign), and his one-man-mission to create a machine to remove the crème from his precious cookie. Followed by Separator Machine #2, a behind the scenes tour of the labs of Bill and Barry, two product designers with different ideas about what makes a good tasty treat. The two videos have clocked up a combined total of over 4 million views, coming in at number two and number nine in the chart this week.Moving on to the User Generated Content chart, and it looks like ‘pranking videos’ are the theme of the week. Going straight to number one with over six million views, is an amusing little video from popular YouTuber Devin Graham, who decided to give his reluctant girlfriend ‘the best experience of her life’ by shoving her off a cliff, (don’t worry, she was attached to a rope swing, but she wasn’t very happy about it!)

In at number three with nearly 2 million views, unsuspecting customers at a beauty shop got a nasty scare when ghostly apparitions began appearing in the mirror. And hot on its heels with over a million views at number four, hidden cameras recorded the public’s reaction to a staged murder in process – what would you do: intervene, run away or maybe record the whole thing on your mobile phone!?

For all of the chart news and the full run down of top videos on the internet this week, check out The Drum Viral Video Chart, powered by VAN, or follow @JoinVan to stay up to date with the latest industry news and YouTube gossip.


Industry insights

View all
Add your own content +