Friday, July 21, 2006
Demonkeeping School of Internet Marketing
During the summer, we have official "Spare the Air" days. On the first 6 of these in the year, almost all of the public transportation is free, all day. That's right, free. I think this is awesome, from an environmental standpoint primarily, but also from an interesting social standpoint. Today was our last "free ride" day and the trains were packed. People heading in to SF for a night out, tourists enjoying themselves, it was a steady flow of people taking in a wonderful summer day.

One of the other things things about the Spare the Air days is that it draws some "interesting" types on to the trains. On the first spare the air day, I had a man sit next to me as I was reading "Practical Demonkeeping" by Christopher Moore. If you haven't read him, I strongly recommend it. He's irreverent, rediculous, and leaves you wondering how anyone ever thought up the characters and plots that he seems to weave with great ease. So, I'm reading the Demonkeeping, and this guy asks if I like Moore. I gave him the quick "yes I like him" and focused back on my book, to give the hopefully obvious statement that I'm reading, and that I am not talking while I am reading. No luck.

My Demonkeeping admirer kept going, telling me he'd been at a book signing with Moore, but never read his books, blah blah blah. Then went on to tell me he'd started a new job, very proudly stating that he worked in Internet Marketing. Now, he said this like it might be 1997 and a girl would swoon when someone mentioned they worked forone of them new fangled dotcoms. There also seemed to be the subtext that he was Smart because he worked in Technology and should be admired for his mental capacities. He then furthered his case of amazingness by announcing that he'd gotten his start working on Websites by working on "adult entertainment, sometimes known as porn sites." Well hey hey, we have a winner, folks! I'm of course beside myself, likely drooling, because not only does this guy work on the Interwebs, but thank my lucky stars, he has worked in Porn.

OK, so the very Smart and Technologically savvy Spare the Air rider then went on to explain Internet Marketing to me. To me. Of course I said nothing about working for an interactive ad agency, and just looked at him completely dumb-foundedly (and probably interpretted as enraptured, delighted, and wantingly) as he went on to tout the many merits of ... really, a drum roll please ... the Subservient Chicken.

(Now, I realize some people may not be familiar with the Subservient Chicken. What is important is that it came out in early 2004 -- so, two and a half years ago. You can see info on it at wikipedia, or at the Chicken's site itself. It's also one of the more commonly talked about viral campaigns, referenced widely and loved by many.)

So back to Romeo. He goes on to tell me that the Subservient Chicken indeed has roots in .... wait for it ... Porn. And yes, with that fellow BART riders, we have come full circle. Welcome to the Demonkeeping School of Internet Marketing, where all campaigns, theories, or ideas begin and end with Porn. Forget strategy, no, no, it boils down to this... Porn. It sells, folks. Just ask any Internet Marketing Guru on public transportation.


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