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How to advertise something you can’t advertise; Movectro, Ogilvy, and Channel 7 getting into trouble

I’m gonna come out with it – I’m a huge fan of ABC’s Media Watch. It’s a 15 minute show that exposes any wrong-doings and miss-reports in Australian media. If you’re a marketing, communication, humanities, PR, or journalism student, then this show is for you.

I wanted to share the following story that was aired on the 27th of June 2011. Media Watch uncovered how a Channel 7 news report was actually a well orchestrated PR campaign by the smart folks at Ogilvy. It was a promotional piece for a new ‘wonder’ drug called Movectro. Under current Australian law, drug companies are not allowed to promote prescription medicine to the general public, meaning that traditional advertising methods just wont do. What Ogilvy did instead is they presented a favourable media release which was plugged by Channel 7 news, calling for its viewers to make this drug available to potential customers (or “patients” if you like) under the current health benefit scheme (get the government to subsidise the drug, so it is available to more people, yet the company still makes the same profit because the government pays the bill for the product). The final result of this campaign was that Movectro manufacturer got hit with a $20,000 fine, and the drug is no longer available here in Australia (I wonder if Ogilvy got fined as well – not sure about that…).

It’s a very interesting look into ‘alternative’ advertising, and the whole idea of “what you see on the news isn’t always news” comes to mind. Anyway, enjoy the show.

Media Watch is available as a free download on iTunes and through its website. You can also catch it on ABC TV and iView. Definitely worth a look.

How to create a QR Code

A little ‘How to’ guide on making your own QR codes.

Click here for the guide (straight from Mashable.com – one of my most-often visited sites).

Marketing promo of January 2011 – Flying Lotus ‘Augmented Reality’ app

On January 12, I received an email and noticed a Facebook notification from Warp Records about their new Trigger Webcam app for the Flying Lotus ‘Cosmogramma’ album. To complement the release, Warp decided to give away some of the album’s out-takes and remixes for free. It rewarded those that bought the original album (on vinyl, CD or mp3), as the only way of obtaining the free material is by ‘unlocking’ it through an app using the album’s original artwork.

Since the whole experience is rather fun, you just can’t help to think how awesome FlyLo and Warp is. Not only is this app encouraging fans to purchase physical and legal downloads of music, it also encourages people that already have the album/product/brand to pick it up, hold it in their hands, and spend some time with it. Pure genius if you ask me…

Anyway, I was so impressed with the positive feedback that this app generated, I decided to save the Facebook announcement and it comments as a pdf – it’s three days of users going nuts and sharing info/download tips with themselves (you can download the pdf here).

Check out the app website and the app developer’s blog to see how it all works.

CheckFacebook.com

A website that deals with one thing, and one thing only – pure Facebook data. So, if you need stats on amount of Facebook users in any country, their age distribution and sex, this is the place to go.

Also, the site links to news articles that mention Facebook. So  it’s not just raw data after all…

Link – CheckFacebook.com