Do you need SEO help in Toronto?
Schedule a consultation with SEO Expert Charles Moffat
by emailing contactus@designseo.ca.
Consultations are $30 per hour.

Trolling Business Competitors / Brand Jamming

Deliberately seeking to undermine a competitor is a rather underhanded way of doing business. Trying to make a viral anti-marketing campaign is even worse. Check out the videos below from "Tony is Back", a campaign aimed at mocking the fictional character 'Tony the Tiger' from Kellogg's Frosted Flakes.






The internet campaign advertises http://tonyisback.com/, which looks like an actual Kellogg's website and links to the official Kellogg's website, but Kellogg's has since redesigned their website and all the links end up on Special Error Message page that says:

"You have reached this page from a website that is not connected to or endorsed by the Kellogg Company."

Basically Kellogg's is being forced to spend money to adjust their website in order to point out that they are not connected with the fake advertising campaign that is "Tony is Back".

Kellogg's has also shut down their social media accounts temporarily.

There is another term for this kind of anti-marketing campaign - it is called Brand Jamming. Brand Jamming is when someone (often anonymously) tries to tarnish the reputation of a brand.

In the past Brand Jamming was often used by anti-capitalists who feel brand names are too powerful and deliberately poke fun at brands for sheer amusement and to prove a point. However in the above case we can see that the artist Jani Leinonen (tonyisback.com is registered to his name) has invested a substantial amount of money into this Brand Jamming campaign - too much to be paid by just him.

Which begs the question, who is paying for the high production quality of the videos?

My guess is: Post Foods.

AKA, Post Cereals, the makers Honey Comb, Raisin Bran, Honey Bunches of Oats, Fruity Pebbles, etc.

Who else would stand to gain from Kellogg's having their brand name tarnished?

Regardless, Kellogg's has since taken legal action. A cease and desist order has evidently called a halt to more videos that were supposed to released on a daily basis, but only 3 videos became public. The most controversial video of the 3 (you can guess which one) apparently went over the line of parody and was deliberately tarnishing.

So word to the wise, if you are thinking of using Brand Jamming or otherwise attempting to troll a brand, remember these things:

#1. Lawsuits can shut down your efforts pretty quickly.

#2. Do it anonymously.

#3. Why bother? What if it backfires and you end up just advertising your competitor?

The last one makes a lot of good sense. If you think about it, doesn't this just more firmly ensconce Kellogg's as a high quality brand? They clearly would never endorse cops beating up a woman or a woman responding to her beating by becoming a suicide bomber.

Think before you try Brand Jamming. It is most likely a waste of your time, and potentially hazardous to your bank account if you get sued for millions.

If you've been a target of Brand Jamming, please contact designSEO.ca for Online Reputation Management Services in Toronto.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments containing links will be marked as spam and not approved. We moderate every comment. If you want to advertise on this blog it is $30 per link.

If you need SEO, SEM or SMO help in Toronto then you need to contact designSEO.ca
Get started by emailing contactus@designseo.ca.
Consultations are $30 per hour.