Just today I was checking my email and received a forward from a friend. Now, let it be known that I am not a fan of forwards and they normally end up in the recycling bin, but this title piqued my interest.
The email was a forward of a letter to Proctor & Gamble, which may or may not be fictitious, written by blogger Wendi Aarons. In this letter she writes to P&G brand manager James Thatcher about the Always Maxi Pads brand and its current campaign slogan, “Have a Happy Period”. Serious or not, the letter is humorous and appeals to many women. Internet technologies allowed this letter to be spread and it was passed along virally through emails, posted on message boards, blogged about and even printed and brought into offices.
According to Technorati, when I searched the term “Wendi Aarons” there were little to no posts found prior to the past 30 days. This suggests she is not a blogger with known authority. Within the last 30 days, this letter was first posted to Mcsweeneys.net where it was viewed by many people. Unfortunately I was unable to locate the original letter post in the archives at this website. As you can see from the graph below generated by blogpulse, conversations involving “Always Maxi Pads” (and presumably the marketing campaign) have increased accordingly. [There are quite a few spikes in the P&G line, though, most recently the increased chatter is about their pet food recall].
Whether or not this letter was actually sent to P&G becomes of second concern. What this open letter has started is a brand conversation about Always Maxi Pads and Proctor and Gamble. And its not positive. It will be interesting to see if this involves into something more, and if P&G (who as guest speaker Ed Keller said last week P&G recognizes we live in a WOM era and understands “the consumer is boss” according to their pronouncement) will shift any of their brand strategies for Always.
Tags: WOM word of mouth Word-of-Mouth Marketing buzz marketing viral marketing marketing communication Northeastern University