Geico Scores as Warren Buffett Plays Air Guitar

Forget the Numa Numa Guy, Billionaire's Axl Rose Impression Is Latest Viral Hit for Insurer

By Published on .

NEW YORK ( -- What makes an ad go viral? Cute babies, furry animals, juvenile humor, implausible stunts, and, well, a real stunt from billionaire investor Warren Buffett.

Geico's "Lizard Ballad" is the only new addition to the list this week in what has to be the corniest ads to make the chart since we launched it a year ago. But! Since it stars Warren Buffett doing an impression of Guns N' Roses rocker Axl Rose, it makes the chart at No. 10 with 368,689 views across just three placements, two uploaded by Geico itself.

Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway owns the insurance company known for its many other videos, such as this one with one of the earliest YouTube stars, the Numa Numa guy. Fun fact about that from the Martin Agency's Rad Tollett: the terrarium with the gecko in the background was actually in the original video that made Gary Brolsma web-famous; all they had to do to shoot the Geico ad was make it more visible, and of course, add a lizard.

Geico's Buffett ad comes in at 2:24 minutes (but who's counting?), which is about optimum length for the YouTube attention span. Even that will be too long for most of you, so if you just want to see Buffett rock out (he really sings), fast-forward to minute 1:30.

Other than Geico and Buffett, the chart is loaded with stalwarts such as Evian, Doritos, Old Spice, Microsoft and Pepsi with ongoing video campaigns racking up TV-sized audiences over weeks and months on the web. Programming note: We'll be honoring some of these campaigns -- along with YouTube and Visible Measures -- as part of Ad Age's Viral Video Awards in New York on April 13.

Last Week Brand Campaign Agency Current Week Views* % Change in Views** Watch the Spot
1 1 Doritos Viralocity BBDO/
Proximity Canada
1,519,071 -35% Doritos: Viralocity
2 2 Evian Live Young BETC Euro RSCG 1,083,921 +2% Evian: Live Young
3 4 Muscle Milk Spring Break It Down Pereira & O'Dell; Sharethrough 723,442 -16% Muscle Milk: Spring Break It Down
4 3 Sony Playstation Move Deutsch 587,736 -41% Sony Playstation: Move
5 5 Old Spice The Man Your Man Could Smell Like Wieden & Kennedy 527,438 -21% Old Spice: The Man Your Man Could Smell Like
6 9 Microsoft Xbox Project Natal World Famous 486,134 +5% Microsoft: Xbox Project Natal
7 10 Sussex Safer Roads Partnership Embrace Life Director: Daniel Cox 484,334 +9% Sussex Safer Roads Partnership: Embrace Life
8 Back on Chart Pepsi Oh Africa N/A 482,901 Back on Chart Pepsi: Oh Africa
9 8 Doritos Crash the Super Bowl 2010 Goodby, Silverstein & Partners 382,004 -22% Doritos: Crash the Super Bowl 2010
10 New Geico Lizard Ballad Geico 368,689 New Geico: Lizard Ballad
Most Popular
In this article: