CBS Scores Viral Hit with “Robin Sparkles”

The CBS sitcom How I Met Your Mother has scored big wins on MySpace and YouTube by weaving storylines from the show online. Their first success is with a MySpace “fan” page for Robin Sparkles, a fake 1980’s Canadian pop star, which is the embarrassing secret alter-ego for one of the main characters.

The fake video for Robin Sparkles’ hit song, “Let’s Go to the Mall”, is available on MySpace and YouTube allowing fans to send it to their friends. Plus the profile has over 6,100 friends allowing the show to maintain contact with them via bulletins and invites.

My only suggestions would be to complete the viral portion of the profile by:

1. Turn the profile into a MySpace Music profile. This will allow users to put the song on their MySpace. Right now it’s only available via Quicktime.

2. Create Robin Sparkles Fan banners allowing users to place them on their profiles.

These will only help drive traffic and word-of-mouth about the show.

The producers don’t plan on stopping with Robin Sparkles, “We’d like to get to the point,” Bays said, “where people will know that if they hear in the narration, ‘but I can’t tell you that part of the story,’ then they’ll know they should go looking for it online.”

Despite the fact CBS is considered an “older-skewing network” they do a great job of embracing next generation media to promote their programming.

John Boyle runs SocialNext, a blog tracking the next generation of marketing via viral video and social networks like MySpace. When not blogging he likes to go to the mall.