When Clowns Do Marketing…

The bastard child of capitalism and mediocrity...

So McDonalds sells really great coffee! And awesome pecan nut tarts! And they’ve been doing it for a while.

Of course, you’d be forgiven for not knowing this, since the advertising/marketing behind this new-ish (it’s been around for a while overseas) offering has been pretty dire.

Actually, it’s been non-existent.

For some reason, it’s been decided that it’s just not worth the effort to get us excited about the Mc-Coffee vibe, unlike this little effort that could easily have been replicated or (GOD FORBID!) even improved upon, down here.

It’s nothing new. The same thing happened with District 9’s marketing. We missed the entire campaign by about 2 months. Our own local media only caught a whiff of it by the time it was winding down overseas.

And clearly adidas just doesn’t see the benefits in extending its global marketing programme to this country. The Star Wars range of sneaks (which marketing campaign I’ve written about somewhat) arrived in the stores about a week or so ago without so much as a rogue storm trooper.

Why do we put up with this box-checking, mediocre approach?

Take your time. Make like Ida Corr and think about it.

I’m out of theories myself.

What’s apparent is that mediocrity is just dandy for the South African market. They’ll suck it up, not giving a damn that they’re being treated like second-class consumers. So we didn’t get to see Snoop (or his local equivalent) and Darth Vader march down main road to deliver the first pair of sneaks. So what? Got to see it on YouTube, right?


Maybe one day, we’ll catch on that brands need to prove they deserve our support. Maybe we’ll force them to all behave like Nandos who work really hard to show us something new. Maybe one day we’ll make it so that they understand that they need us more than we need them.

We deserve better.

Or we can just carry on playing Farmville

Aliens Among Us…

District 9 is an upcoming sci-fi movie slated for release later this year. But it’s not the story that sets it apart from the rest (extraterrestrials have become refugees in South Africa). It’s more the way they’ve gone about marketing this project.

For a long time now, D9 (as it is known) has enjoyed a presence in various forms around the internet, from the standard website ( where you can grab content from both alien and human sources) to the Twitter account and accompanying Twitpic account.

But there are also other sites with blogs from subversive alien elements who are protesting being discriminated against and a look at the culture of the alien race. You can find a full list of sites at the bottom of this post.

On the ground there have been mock protests at the San Diego Comic Con 2008 – as well as guerilla placement of “Humans Only” signs on various modes of public transport and other public areas.

Sadly, this seems to all be happening in the USA only, so the buzz for a movie set in South Africa (that for once is not some lame political drama) is near non-existent.

So why has none of this marketing trickled down to South Africa? Probably because the Hollywood marketing machine is so isolated it has no clue about the relevance of this film in this country. Typical. Hell, offhand, I can think 10 different ways to build the buzz around this movie down here in sunny SA.

Anyway, here’s the trailer for the movie. And it looks promising. Did I mention Peter Jackson is involved?

And here are those links I promised: