Yeah, we can create buzz!
Oh, you meant real buzz? Well, we can definitely create fake accounts and try!
Comsumerist brings us a classic case of an agency (Martin Waymire Advocacy Communications) lying to its client about creating that coveted “pre-launch buzz”. Or in this case, shill until ye can’t shill no more! It’s too easy to blame the brands, here, folks. Brand managers, VPs and the like are taking companies for their word when they say they can accomplish a goal. It’s call trust in your agency; except in this case you’re screwing your client.
See, If the goal is unrealistic it’s the agency’s job to not drop down to their knees but instead push back on the client. Are there people that care about the Big Ten channel? Absolutely. I used to live in the midwest, remember. The sad thing is that there’s really no need to resort to shilling.
I place all of the blame squarely on the agency – they are the ones bullshitting their clients with capabilities they don’t have. They are the people responsible for not being honest with their clients.
I’m not saying clients aren’t at fault for doing their homework or asking for case studies, but the question is are you their trusted partner, guiding them through the world of new media or are you just a spineless hack who’s shilling for a dollar?
Speaking of which, creating artificial demand by giving fake reviews is punishable by, at the minimum, a lawsuit from rivals for such deeds in the EU. So much for the quick dollar, err, euro.