Jan 8, 2013

Content Marketing Shoutout: Blendtec

Will It Blend?If you asked me on the spot to name my #1 favorite content marketer, I’d have to say it’s Blendtec.

Sure, there are bigger brands out there with fancier approaches to reaching their audience with quality content, but Blendtec has a special place in my heart—not for their outstanding blog or their huge array of tasty recipes, but for their groundbreaking series of “Will It Blend?” videos.

If you’re not familiar with this little gem of a YouTube channel, its origins go back to 2006—eons ago in webcast years.

Marketing Director George Wright was taking a stroll through the office, pondering how to turn around the firm’s disappointing sales figures, when he happened upon company founder Tom Dickson stress-testing the latest Blendtec model. Wright looked on fascinated as Dickson tossed in paper clips, wood chips, glass marbles, and other miscellanea to ensure the blender performed up to Blendtec standards. And it gave Wright an idea.

Did I mention that, at the same time, this little upstart site called YouTube was starting to gain some serious attention?

To put it into pop marketing terms, George Wright’s chocolate met YouTube’s peanut butter, and a phenomenon was born: a series of delightfully cheesy, Price-Is-Right-Meets-Mr-Wizard-style videos featuring the engaging Mr. Dickson tossing random items into a Blendtec blender. 

Here’s one of my favorite episodes: Will It Blend? – Rubik’s Cube

Now watch it again. Notice anything? I’ll tell you one thing that strikes me: Dickson doesn’t say a single word about the blender. No model number, no features or benefits, no price, no ordering information. He just goes about his delightful schtick. We wonder, we watch, we laugh … then we walk away thinking “wow, that’s one heck of a blender.”

And the next time my own blender chokes on a pack of frozen strawberries, guess who will come to mind?

The results? One year after launching its first episode, Blendtec sales had increased by 500 percent, and the climb just kept on going. The channel now boasts over 500,000 YouTube subscribers and over 219 million video views.

So, if you’re still thinking that you have to be a Coca-Cola or an AmEx to make content marketing work, let “the little blender that could” offer you some inspiration.

OK, that’s my favorite content marketer—what’s yours? Let us know in the comments and we might just select them for our next Content Marketing Shoutout!

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About the Author

Rachel ParkerA self-described “marketing nerd,” Rachel Parker, Owner and Chief Content Strategist of Resonance, works with businesses of all sizes to help them meet the challenge of connecting with today’s hard-to-reach customer.

Rachel has made Resonance the “one stop shop” for companies looking to get more out of their content marketing efforts. She’s also a sought-after speaker and has presented to many of Houston’s major business and marketing organizations. Contact Rachel about speaking to your group or business.

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Rachel Parker

A self-proclaimed geek who can recite entire episodes of South Park by heart, Rachel Parker helps businesses publish content that connects with their audience … and converts those followers into customers. She’s also the host of the Content Marketing Podcast and a sought-after speaker, having presented to many major business and marketing organizations.

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