Guerrilla Marketing

Street Poet As Stealth Huckster for Nissan

"Nissan Motors is planting actors in movie theaters to
perform live commercials before the start of showings of
'The Matrix Revolutions' in an effort to expose jaded,
skeptical consumers to advertising by masking it as
something else. The brief in-person pitches feature actors scattered among
the ticket-buying audience who stand and deliver lines that
evoke the words spoken by poets at events known as slams or
jams. Their performances are timed to accompany a
commercial the audience sees on the movie screen, which


Free Cigs For Celebs

"A tobacco company is offering a free lifetime supply of cigarettes to celebrity smokers as part of a guerrilla marketing campaign to raise the public profile of its recently launched brand," the Associated Press reports. "In a tersely worded pitch, Freedom Tobacco International Inc. said it was seeking to 'seed' its cigarettes with adult celebrities. The appeal was made Tuesday to publicists through a Web-based network subscribed to by hundreds of public relations agencies. ...


Beware the Fat Man

Theater student Natalie Alvarez takes a close look at Jonathan Ressler's "guerrilla advertising" company, Big Fat, Inc. In order to bypass consumer skepticism about advertising, Ressler hires "real people" to talk up his clients' products in bars, parks and other public places. "We plant a group of people in a bar or other public setting and instruct them to use a brand, perform a ritual, repeat a sound bite, and involve others in the activity," Ressler explains.


New York City Doesn't Like Microsoft's Decals

Microsoft is the latest company to upset city officials by using sidewalks and other public property for a "guerilla" marketing campaign. According to the Associated Press, "In New York, municipal workers removed hundreds of Microsoft decals on Thursday and planned to remove hundreds more on Friday. ... 'We intend to hold your firm directly responsible for this illegal, irresponsible and dangerous defacing of public property,' Cesar Fernandez, the department's assistant counsel, said in a letter to Microsoft.


It's an Ad, Ad, Ad World

"The next time an overly friendly blond sidles up in a crowded bar and asks you to order her a brand-name martini, or a cheery tourist couple wonder whether you can take their picture with their sleek new camera-in-a-cell phone, you might want to think twice," warns Daniel Eisenberg. "There's a decent chance that these strangers are pitchmen in disguise, paid to oh-so-subtly pique your interest in their product." Eisenberg examines the growing use of "stealth marketing" -- covert product placements.


The Fat Man Sings

Advertising Age profiles Jonathan Ressler of Big Fat, a marketing company that specializes in what it calls "real-life product placement" -- planting thousands of freelance shills in bars and other public places to covertly spread word-of-mouth chatter about the virtues of brand-name drinks and other products. Big Fat's current client list includes Pepsi, Nintendo, Volvic, Evian, USA Networks and W magazine.


First USA Pays Teens to Promote Credit Cards

First USA, a division of Bank One, is paying two young men to walk around the Jersey Shore this summer wearing white t-shirts showing their company logo. The company has also agreed to pay each $40,000 in tuition, room, board and books for the academic year when they enter college next month. In return, the two 18-year-old boys, will promote the First USA-sponsored message of smart budgeting and financial responsibility. They will make campus appearances, serve on a student advisory board and publicize financial tips for students on their website.



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