Brandon Boyer

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By now you’ve probably seen the viral Bike Hero video recently linked via our gadget loving bretheren, and by now you’ve probably sussed out that it was indeed a highly staged hoax, from the same agency behind Marc Ecko’s alleged Air Force graffiti-bomb, and that might have left you feeling a bit cold.

Friend of Offworld, interesting-web-thing-maker, and keen link-smith Tom Armitage at Infovore sums up the disappointment nicely:

Why don’t marketers and advertisers understand that, sometimes, the target audience for this kind of thing will like it just as much if it’s honest about being advertising? It’s a lovely piece of footage, and it ties into the garage-band, DIY ethos well; it’s a good fit for the Guitar Hero brand. As it is, I’m disappointed because I now know this wasn’t the product of hard-working fans, wanting to promote a product they love; it was the product of a lot of time/effort from people with money to spend on time/effort.

As a long-time appreciator and equal-part promoter of smart — but transparent — advertising, I couldn’t agree more.

Infovore » Bike Hero-gate

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  1. Many marketers struggle with change. They have NO IDEA how to properly market to people in our generation, resorting to sleight-of-hand tactics such as that to try to get their message across. It’s really creative and great, and I agree it would have been a breath of fresh air if they just branded it Guitar Hero right out of the gate instead of trying to jam it down our throats as “viral”. What sickens me is looking through marketing materials at the company I work for, and seeing videos that haven’t been released yet named “viralvideo”. That just destroys the authenticity and makes you seem even MORE out of touch.

  2. Agreed. I think everybody can appreciate an original, clever video without having to be lied to.

    Funny that, living in LA and only a few miles away from that unmistakable fountain at 2:00, I was certain it was fake or at least professionally produced on my first watch. The streets & paths in that area sure aren’t connected like that.

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