Raise your hand if you have heard the phrase “damn, Daniel” at least 100 times in the past month. It seems like a new viral meme or video paves its way every month, thanks to two Riverside Polytechnic High School Students in California, we have our next catchphrase. It all started with Joshua Holz taking a series of Snapchat videos following his friend Daniel Lara around school. The video has now gained millions of YouTube views and brands have quickly picked up on the trend.
In a couple of snaps featured in the video, Holz makes the now famous remark, “damn, Daniel, back at it again with the white Vans.” This remark was undeniable for Vans to utilize on Twitter. They were a little late to respond to the video, but the company eventually tweeted out a poll between back at it again and with the white Vans. Thanks to the video, Vans are regaining popularity with a skyrocket demand for white Vans on EBay. The company also surprised Lara with a lifetime supply of the shoes during Holz and Lara’s segment on the Ellen DeGeneres Show.
Other brands that took advantage of the popular meme and hashtag on social media include Clorox, Axe, and an overwhelming amount of attention from Denny’s Twitter handle.
Even celebrities have taken advantage of the popular video, including Weezer. Both teens were asked to appear in the artist’s “California Kids” music video. This will help the popularity of the music video because the viral video is still a current fad and has gained some die-hard fans.
From a public relations perspective viral videos like “Damn, Daniel” are the holy grail of unpaid media. Millions of consumers view these kinds of videos, and become exposed to a brand in a way that does not feel like advertising. The key is for brands to hop in the conversation right away, while such videos are at their highest peak of popularity. Vans missed the mark capitalizing on this opportunity to promote themselves by responding a little too late and with lack-luster creativity.
There will come a time when the “Damn, Daniel” remarks and parodies end, but for now we must embrace it until the next viral video makes way.
Blog written by Kelly Larson
PRecisely PR is the blog of the Illinois State University Chapter of the PRSSA. We write about Chapter events, the public relations industry, member profiles, and more.