A couple months ago Old Spice came up with an exciting new advertising strategy focused on presenting “The Man Your Man Could Smell Like,” and related commercials all featuring a shirtless Isaiah Mustafa, the former NFL wide receiver turned actor.
The flagship ad features a monologue by the muscular Mustafa, who tells women in the audience that “sadly, (your man) isn’t me.” He does assert, however, that if he “stops using lady scented body wash and switches to Old Spice, he could smell like me.”
The scene then abruptly shifts from a bathroom to a boat and Mustafa presents an oyster containing two tickets to “that thing you love” before the camera zooms out and it is finally revealed that he’s on a horse.
The targeting of the female demographic by casting Mustafa was a masterstroke by Old Spice manufacturer Proctor and Gamble, who researched and found that 70% of shower gel in households is purchased by women for men.
There were several other similar commercials released by the company, all very cleverly done. Afterwards, Mustafa filmed a series of humorous YouTube videos addressing his fans as an act of gratitude.
His efforts earned excellent reviews. Joe Dziemianowicz of the New York Daily News wrote about Mustafa’s “wildly smug, cool cat smooth dude persona” that help cause an explosion of popularity of the product.
The commercial’s unique production also wasn’t lost on Chicago, IL area securities litigation analyst Patrick Lyons, who wrote to the Tickle City Award Committee:
As I saw in a making-of, the commercial was shot in one take on a bathroom set on top of a half boat set at the beach, with a human conveyor belt that dropped him on to the horse. The only CGI was the old spice bottle coming out of the diamonds. One shot. Incredible.
Lyons cites a full-blown obsession that the commercial brought to his social circle. Old Spice Commercial, you are tickle city!