Kmart has been called a lot of things recently, but “witty” and “hilarious” probably don’t sum up what most people think about the retail chain—until they see the YouTube video that has gone viral. The video features numerous shoppers who say the catch phrase, “ship my pants” numerous times throughout. It’s part of the retail chain’s promotion of its program enabling shoppers to ship things that are not available in stores to their homes for free.
Even NBC’s Today show reported on the viral video on Friday after it was viewed almost 8 million times on YouTube. The video has only been up for about a week.
The program is likely Kmart’s answer to the free shipping offered by numerous other retailers, especially online retail giants like Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN). A spokesperson for the retailer told Forbes that the struggling retail chain is trying to connect more closely with shoppers. The new ad campaign is part of it, as is the company’s Shop Your Way rewards program.
Having a video go viral is like hitting the advertising lottery. Every brand hopes to do it, but not every brand which tries it will succeed. For a retailer that’s been around as long as Kmart, hitting viral video gold may be just what the doctor ordered to bring some attention back to the retailer. But will it be enough to bring shoppers back through the doors of the relatively few remaining Kmart locations still left around the country?
Shares of Sears Holdings Corp (NASDAQ:SHLD), Kmart’s parent company, dropped almost 7 percent on Monday and then rose 1.5 percent in after-hours trading.