Pepsi gets revenge on blogger who revealed its ad to be a fake, with an awesome REAL ‘Test Drive’ sequel

The team behind the Viral Video Chart examine the latest trending videos and look at what it takes to become a web smash.

Video data compiled by the VAN team.

Top trending viral ad campaigns:

Viral videoBack in March last year, Pepsi scored a massive viral win with its hilarious Test Drive prank video. The ad featured NASCAR driver, Jeff Gordon, disguised as a potential customer and taking an unsuspecting car salesman on a terrifying joy ride. It clocked up over 40 million views, becoming one of the most shared branded videos of 2013. Unfortunately for Pepsi though, one rather eagle eyed blogger spotted a few inconsistencies with the video and pulled the whole ad apart, publicly declaring it as a fake.Travis Okulski, contributor to popular auto blog, Jalopnik, was very vocal with his opinions, writing a scathing article about the campaign and giving several media interviews claiming that everyone involved were actors and it was actually a stunt man driving the car. Obviously Jeff Gordon and Pepsi were a bit annoyed. So much so, that one year later they decided to get their own back with a stunt that even Okulski couldn’t claim was a fake. With the help of his colleagues at Jalopnik, they lured Okulski out to North Carolina on the premise that he would be able to have a sneak peak at the brand new Corvette Z06. Unbeknown to him, the guy that picked him up from the hotel was actually Gordon, masquerading as an ex con turned taxi driver who, as it turned out, was actually on the run from the law. It wasn’t long before a high-speed police chase kicked off, leaving a genuinely terrified Okulski shrieking in the back seat, begging the driver to pull over. Suffice to say, nobody was questioning the authenticity this time around.It was a pretty smart move from Pepsi to use the real or fake debate generated from the last video to gain momentum for a follow up ad and give the story a new twist. Marc Gilbar, the creative director behind the campaign did an interesting behind the scenes interview with Adweek that’s well worth a read. You can also check out the Jalopnik blog to get Okulski’s personal take on the whole experience.

Also trending this week is a thought provoking promotional ad for world famous acrobatic group, Cirque du Soleil. Narrated by popular YouTuber, Ze Frank, the video offers an insightful and moving take on the importance of trust, delivered through a mesmerising acrobatic performance.It’s interesting to see Ze Frank, who is best known for his True Facts series, getting involved in a commercial project and it marks an increasing trend of popular YouTube content creators working with brands on promotional campaigns.

Elsewhere in the listings; an amusing new ad for Snickers shows that Godzilla can actually be a pretty fun friend (as long as he’s not hungry); Pizza Hut has unveiled an interactive concept table that could change the way we order take out; and Lipton has partnered with the Muppets in a new global campaign to get the world drinking more tea.

Top trending UGC and entertainment videos:

Top of the UGC Chart this week with over 8 million views, Paul Rudd kicks Jimmy Fallon’s ass in the ultimate lip sync battle showdown.

At number two, Jean-Claude Van Damme continues his quest to become the most epic man in the world in a brilliant zero gravity spoof of his splits stunt.

Also worth a watch this week… an awesome rap music tribute to Breaking Bad; amazing footage of a baby pelican learning to fly and an amusing look at how humans would appear if they started acting like cats.

Squeak of the week:

It’s been a loooooooong week and I think this snoozie little guy feels exactly like I do today. Happy Friday folks! (Don’t worry, it’s nearly the weekend) ☺

Join the #KittenCamp Snackz mailing list for weekly updates on top trending videos and follow @JoinVAN for the latest viral gossip and industry news!Mel Peck