The Power of Creative Thinking


Remember that bizarre singing Google Pagerank video I created recently?

Did you think, “that was kinda funny Dean, but what was the point?”.

If so, read on…

This is an exclusive, behind the scenes look at my first attempt at combining powerful creative mindset techniques with video technology.

Ok, so for those of you who haven’t a clue what I am talking about, you can view the google pagerank spoof video here: singing pagerank

I posted the video on a Monday, and mentioned it via Twitter, where at the time, I had approx 850 followers.

Here is a small sample of the results:



Even famous Google engineer Matt Cutts heard about it.


Even the big names got in on the joke:

So what effect did this have on traffic?

It was a quiet week on my blog, traffic was down, but regardless, you can see the results here:

pagerank stats

The thing to note here was that traffic went from around 800 pageviews in a day to over 4,000, which is quite a jump.

But the thing that really excited me was the backlinks the video received:

In total, there were over 200 sites linking the the video in the first few days alone.

Here is a tiny sample:

The value of these 200+ one-way backlinks, many of which contained terms like “google” & “pagerank” is phenomenol. Even at just $50 per link, that is over $1,000 in value in links alone. There are new links being added daily still.

But the value doesn’t stop there…

After approx 6 hours, I added an aweber opt-in form.

It wasn’t very pretty, and the copy was almost non-existent, but within 48 hours I had received 126 submissions and 103 double opt-in subscribers.

Again, not a HUGE number, but bear in mind that thus far, this experiment had used approx 8 minutes of my time.

So the ROI in time and money was impressive.

The Secondary Page Experiment

I did however notice that since adding the email opt-in form, the buzz died down.

So I created a second page, this one had no advertising text, no email forms, no ads whatsoever, I wanted to test if the lack of ads would make it difference.

IT DID!!!!

The test page was getting MORE traffic within 36 hours, to date, it has received over 5 times as much traffic, and almost double the amount of backlinks.

This confirmed a theory that I have had since day one: People don’t feel cool about promoting salesey content to their friends.

The page was picked up by some authority websites:

jack humphrey

The site was also discussed in numerous languages, strangely, in Holland and France it was more popular than in English language sites.

It even did well on a Spanish Digg site.

What You Can Learn From This

There are loads of things you can take from this, here are a few:

Injecting personality into your marketing, website, and brand is becoming more and more powerful. Watch out for personality marketing in 2009. You heard it here first.

Agressive advertising and self-promotion will kill any chances of going viral. If you want to include ads, add them AFTER your content has gone global. NOT before.

You CAN monetize novelty content, you just need to be smart and moresubtle than usual.

Never underestimate the value of hundreds of one-way links from all over the globe. They will reap benefits for years and years to come. In fact, my rankings across the board have been boosted in Google already.

When my buddy Nick James heard about this, he asked Barry and I to speak at an event in London last week. So the was a nice side-benefit of buzz success.

Creative text is great, but creative VIDEO is the new powerhouse.

In 2009, video is likely to be a very popular factor in buzz marketing. I want to take the time to thank my good friend Perry Lawrence A.K.A Mr Video for helping turn my wacky idea into reality.

If you want to learn the EXACT creative thinking and creative mindset techniques I used to create this, and many other successful ideas, and learn how to make million dollar ideas over and over again. Make sure you are subscribed to my free newsletter in the top right of this page.


  • Renegade Conservatory Guy

    Hi Dean

    Thanks for sharing your response details with us on this. I did think it was funny at the time.

    I need to think of something similar for my site.


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  • Alexandre de Oliveira

    Congratulations. A so simple thing became so well spoken.

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  • Jaseem Umer

    There is one more reason why opt-in form affected the buzz. When people see it they think the video and the whole buzz was created for the opt-in form. “We have seen more insane buzz tricks from those guys who want to make money” and the back button.

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  • Julie Isaac

    I’ve wondered about the value of going viral with something that is seemingly separate from your brand/product/business.

    Buzz value is a funny thing, because it’s often indirect. People aren’t talking about your marketing skills, or your products, or your blog, or you, they’re giggling over your Google video and sending all their friends to see it, so they can get a Google giggle, too.

    But while they’re talking about your video, they’re sending tons of traffic your way. And the next time they hear the name Dean Hunt, they’ll go, “Oh, yeah. He’s that Google giggle guy. What’s he up to, now?”

    So when you do have something you want to promote, you’ll get more people checking out your product or services than you would have gotten without that silly viral video that was nothing but fun.

    Thanks for another great buzz markeing lesson, Dean.

    Creative Tips & Tools for Writers

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  • Dean Hunt


    You are 100% correct.

    Not many people have the foresight to see that far down the line, and I include many top marketers in that.


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  • jp moses


    Man, I gotta say I just love your stuff man. I love that you’re willing to bring us on “the inside” of your little experiment and let us be a fly on the wall.

    I’m trying to think how I could emulate what you did in my own niche (real estate investing).

    I tried recently, by inserting a few industry gurus into a JibJab video, but it didn’t really go anywhere.

    I’ll keep thinking though. Your endless creativity is inspiring and greatly motivating. I wanna be the Dean Hunt for REI! :-)

    Thanks again, man.


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  • Dean Hunt


    Many thanks,

    I have had some experience in your industry, it is tricky, but ANY industry is possible.

    Will be revealing much more in the near future.


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  • Julie Isaac


    The other day I asked you, “Which is a better video buzz creator: funny or inspiring?”

    And you answered: funny AND inspiring!

    I just realized that your Google video is both. It’s cute, and the quivering upper lip makes me want to laugh, but the song you chose is beautiful and inspiring. I end up listening to the song bite cycle through a couple of times before I leave the site, because I love the song and the feeling it gives me. You could have chosen a funky and fun beat, but you chose inspiring.

    I also realized, when I looked at your blog post again, that many people didn’t mention your name when they recommended the video, but because your blog is at, they see your name anyway every time. Creating… BUZZ!

    I also noticed, that the page you have the video on, with or without the opt-in, doesn’t have your Dean Hunt header or a logo or anything that identifies it as yours. The sole identifier is It’s very subtle. Still, every time someone puts up a link or tells someone where to go, your name is there.

    Damn, you’re good!


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  • making money from home

    I think that is really interesting, I think it is good to track your success online as you can recreate the same phenomenum again

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  • The Freelance Cartoonist

    You’re right. In this era of too much content, creativity is what differentiates you from the rest.

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  • Dare

    I didn’t know Twitter can be used as viral marketing tool…

    wow Dean you’re currently the best marketer out there who brings practical advice.

    I don’t understand why Chris Brogan has so many subscribers…maybe he’s faking it? In my opinion you offer LOT OF MORE PRACTICAL ADVICE THAN HIM. Really.

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  • Wily Walnut

    Hi Dean,

    Saw a link on Twitter and followed it here.

    LOVE this! Love the site, your ideas, and the practical application of creative thinking.

    Thank you for sharing it and for the inspiration.


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  • Dare

    JP Moses if your market is real estate agents then you can combine the approach many people use…get a famous buzz and combine it with yours.


    Famous buzz = Myth Busters
    Your niche = real estate investing
    Combination = REI Busters…

    or something like that.
    Just an idea.

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    creative thinking definitely changes one’s life.

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