So the world is talking about a cheeky Poundland Elf tea bagging Barbie. Well I say the world, or at least 8.6 million Twitter users in the UK, anyway the filter bubble is frothing and jumping up and down. Perhaps we shouldn’t forget the UK population is 66+ million – by my estimate thats still a small percentage, certainly not universal outrage
In this new age of political correctness a ‘screw it all’ brand campaign from a discount store has thrown up the finger.
Nothing says bugger the PC brigade like an elf doing unspeakable things to Barbie! Poundland, scandalised Twitter by releasing pictures of a toy elf doing all sorts of naughtiness! The campaign has hidden depths of marketing trickey. One of the talked about pictures shows the elf holding a teabag over a lying down Barbie’s mouth asking ‘How do you like your tea? One lump or two?’ They since removed the image of a Twinings box after the tea company complained. Another of the images shows the elf enjoying a game of strip poker with naked dolls using the age old pun ‘poke-her’.
Clever? Smart? Award winning? Or just lazy campaigning to stir up the millennials on social? I assume they’ve fallen into a trap. The vast majority of Poundland customers are unlikely to be trapped in any Twitter filter bubble. It’s more that the outraged Twitterarti have been used to generate interest in a set of visuals which are best ignored. Lame, and not very funny, 21st century saucey seaside postcard images which epitomise the golden age of seaside holidays. Those saucy postcards featuring heaving bosoms, henpecked husbands, miserable wives and captions loaded with double entendres were as much part of the fun as candy floss and donkey rides. Poundland have dipped back in time to wind up those that should see the obvious…
In a statement about the fuss, Mark Pym, Poundland’s Marketing Director was unrepentant: ‘If you think there’s been a mixed reaction you just haven’t seen the love on Facebook. It’s overwhelming. That’s because it connects with our shoppers. In fact, we’re proud of the campaign that has cost £25.53 and is being touted as the winning marketing campaign this Christmas.”
Whatever the intent there has been quite a fuss – I am doubtful it will drive folk into Pondland stores. In truth it will be forgotten in 48 hours. Nevertheless it is a example of just how easy it is to get millions of Twitter users to help shout out on behalf of brand.
A Poundland gift for Christmas.