#FakeTradie v Stoner Sloth: which bad ad achieved the biggest social buzz?

The Liberal Party's Fake Tradie ad and NSW Government's Stoner Sloth efforts are probably the two most derided Australian ads in the last six months. Brodie Evans rips apart the data to reveal which ad managed most engagement and reach across social platforms.

A new contender has hit social media, battling for most talked about, terrible ad to air on Australian TV in recent memory.

Certainly the best of the worst from the Federal election so far (step up your game, Shorten!)

He may or may not be a steel-worker but his high-vis is certainly getting some high visibility. The new Liberal Party election attack ad went viral this week for all the wrong reasons.

Dubbed #FakeTradie by the Twitterati — who quickly pointed out that the grip on his coffee mug is totally wrong and the saw-stool is set up outside the fencing of the construction area. Where the hell is the OHS rep?

As it turns out, he may in fact be a real tradie but he’s also really shit at delivering his lines.

Similarly, last December an ad went viral like a bad rash. You may remember the awkwardly groaning, hairy abomination, Stoner Sloth, who taught kids that smoking marijuana will lead to salt/salad confusion at the dinner table.

Both ads are great examples of authority figures missing their mark with poor creative communication to their intended audience, producing instead social media mascots for cultural cringe.

Like a B-grade movie. They’re so bad, they’re good.

Using Crimson Hexagon’s buzz analysis we wanted to see which ad wins the title of best bad ad. Apt timing, with the Cannes Lion festival paying homage to the best in advertising right now, we are here to award the worst.

So here’s our side by side analysis from the first three days of these trending topics.

Fake Tradie began trending on June 18, 2016, and Stoner Sloth on December 18, 2015.

social source graph - sloth v tradie

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Fake Tradie blew up on Twitter, which is reflected in the Crimson Hexagon data. Stoner Sloth featured heavily on Twitter and went international on Tumblr — being shared thousands of times on the blogging platform.

Below you can see how the conversation was structured, with Fake Tradie generating discussion around Negative Gearing (hands off his investment property!) and outcry from ‘Real Tradies’. Stoner Sloth immediately got parodied and mocked, with plenty mentioning it being a big fail for anti-drug campaigners in NSW.

topics graph - sloth v tradie

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National Epidemic or Global Pandemic?

Which of these viral ads suffered the most mockery abroad?

Crimson segmented up the available geo-data and below are the top countries where the conversation trend spread to.

geography - sloth v tradie

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International Virility Award goes to… Stoner Sloth!

Stoner Sloth showed a strong presence in both the USA and UK. He got around fast for a stoner.

Okay, but who generated the most buzz to take the crown?

The fired-up ocker Aussie or the mammal with the munchies?

Below we can see the conversation volume over the three-day period. Both peaking in the second day of their social fame. Fake Tradie peaked strongly at 40k+ posts at it’s peak, but Stoner Sloth was more spread out over the period with the conversation staying strong for days afterwards.

conversation volume - tradie v sloth

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And, the winner of Most Viral Bad Ad goes to…

Share of Voice - sloth v tradie

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Congratulations Fake Tradie!
We raise our blue coffee mugs to you and contrived Aussie Battlers like you, everywhere!

fake tradie - blue mug

Brodie Evans is a social analyst at One Small Step Collective


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