MHB WEEKLY: By the students, for the world

David Murdico at the SMASH | April 20, 2011

On April 7th, 2011, the MHB program hosted a social media summit at the USC Davidson Center in downtown Los Angeles. The first-ever SMASH, or Social Media Advanced Skills Huddle, amassed industry professionals, graduate students and professors for short lectures and brainstorming huddles. In the continuing MHB Weekly coverage of the event’s distinguished speakers and key ideas, today looks at creative content expert David Murdico.

Mr. Murdico is the Executive Creative Director & Managing Partner of Supercool Creative, a Los Angeles outfit that focuses on entertainment, humor and innovation in its work for various clients, including T-Mobile and Atari. Supercool also creates in-house parodies of its own profession, like the sarcastic video below that mocks the world of social media, as well as the individuals who might be a little too quick to label themselves as experts:
Lecturing on the topic of leadership, Mr. Murdico suggested three main tenets of moving social strategy into the C-suite: Education, Interpretation and Return on Investment. As for education, he admitted that many executives are hesitant to engage in social media for their own fear of failure, but that their participation — and sometimes even those failures — should be viewed as a learning process. Mr. Murdico encouraged executives to trust their teams, many of which are composed of entry-level employees with more natural experience in web communication, to move forward with internet endeavors, and he underlined the importance of staying current with online information houses like Mashable, ReelSEO, MediaPost and AdAge. The integration step involves incorporating the use of social media into a larger strategy — not relying solely on viral tactics for marketing — and finding value in both purposed and repurposed content, as well as paid and earned media. Lastly, in terms of ROI, Mr. Murdico explained that social media campaigns are “all over the map” in terms of returns and measurement of returns; what unites them are the facts that executives should always use predictive ROI, and should always recognize the difference between soft returns (unmeasurable outcomes like hype and buzz) and hard statistics.

To show an example of effective viral strategy, Mr. Murdico shared a video of Supercool’s recent work with the Pizza Hut chain, which debuted its Ultimate Stuffed Crust Pizza last month. To accompany the launch of the new product, which features actual toppings like pepperoni in its doughy crust, Supercool filmed the delivery of a very special pizza — lined with $1,000 in hundred-dollar bills — to ordinary customers and families. The results, filled with the clever and gotcha! moments well-known to YouTube, are funny and engaging:
The viral campaign, however, didn’t stop there. Jimmy Kimmel Live, ABC’s late-night talk show, picked up on the humor and engineered its own unique moment, in which Jimmy’s sidekick Guillermo Díaz explodes from a pizza in talking head form to announce a Twitter contest (see below). Exemplifying Mr. Murdico’s concept of integration, Pizza Hut tied its new pizza to a viral video, a web competition, product placement and a national ad campaign within the span of a few short weeks.



1 Comment »

  1. This is exactly the 4th posting, of yours I read. But yet I really love this particular
    one, “David Murdico at the SMASH MHB WEEKLY: By the students, for the world” the best.
    Cya -Justine

    Comment by — February 6, 2013 @ 6:22 pm

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    Established in 2009 at USC, the Master's of Science in Human Behavior is designed to equip students with knowledge of consumer psychology, social media and market analysis skills. This is our blog. Subscribe

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