No, not Him.
I mean Moses, the little miracle kitten (click here).
Did you see how the world found out about Moses? Read through the historical posts. This video "went viral", as they say. Next thing you know, Moses is on The Today Show, and even earns honored status on I Can Has Cheezeburger.
But this isn't about something going viral.
The chain of events leading to this video going viral cannot be captured in a bottle. You have a random blog, you have YouTube, you have popular websites appealing to Jasmine, you have websites appealing to Jennifer, you have the Today Show (Judy).
Marketing experts will tell you that you have to "do everything", that you have to be "multi-channel". And yet, if you tried to astroturf this thing, you'd fail ... if you set up a blog and YouTube and your PR people tried to astroturf it on popular blogs or on television, you'd fail. Be honest!
Everybody wants to know what the "Best Practices" are ... somebody just please give away some trade secrets for free, and we'll all be successful, right?
But these days, "Best Practices" make no sense. Sure, the fundamentals still make sense ... you minimize returns and forecast inventory properly and you'll be wildly more profitable than your mediocre competition. Marketing "Best Practices", however, have a low probability of success.
There are probably a thousand stories like Moses out there. If marketed properly, you have a 1 in 500 chance of being noticed. If not marketed properly, you have a 1 in 1,000 chance of being noticed. This results in a share of not-so-good-practices succeeding ... and in almost all spectacularly-planned-via-best-practices strategies failing.
It's a good thing that little Moses is adorable, because that makes the story possible ... the content (or in our world, the merchandise) still matters.