If someone founded a retail startup and asked their mentor, "is it a good idea to openly mock my customers online?" the mentor would most likely back away slowly. "You're crazy to even think that," he might opine. And he'd be right.
But Vancouver-born Lululemon, a niche retail startup turned smashing international success, did just that: the yoga apparel seller deliberately poked fun at its own target customers in a YouTube video. And you know what? It went viral—in a good way.
Inspired by Shit Girls Say, an online video series that was inspired by Shit My Dad Says, a famous Twitter feed, Lululemon published a two-minute video two weeks ago called Shit Yogis Say. A rapidfire of mocking quotes to the rising world of pseudo yogis, such as "Let's do wheatgrass shots after this," Shit Yogis Say should have offended most—it's turning the people who pay $100 for its yoga pants into the butt of a public joke.
But said yogis took it in stride—in fact, they've absolutely loved it so far. Swiftly cracking one million views, its Lululemon's most-watched video by far, and with less than 4% of those giving it a thumbs up or down choosing to dislike it, it's clear that the company's risky move has paid off in spades. Check it out below.
(Oh, and here's everything you've ever wanted to know about viral marketing.)