Saturday, October 20, 2007

Searching for a nonsense word

The holiday season is far behind us and now we get to hear the tall stories from that period. In the Netherlands an office furniture and supply discounter Overtoom had a big hit. In its radio commercials it summed up what the company offered and added the sentence “and also a Poeremetator”. This non existing word yielded 413.000 hits on Google, 350.000 visits to the web shop in the month of September, 16 percent more acquisitions.

A Poeremetator is a nonsense word in Dutch. It belongs to the category of words, which are used for new employees who are sent for an errant through the company to end up in the warehouse. They are hard to translate, but a mercury magnet is one of those company jokes.

The Poeremetator did unleash also the creative minds. Poeremetator movies turned up on YouTube; the best one attracted 9.500 views in seven days. No less than 227 blog postings (now 228) were written about the non existing device. But also in social communities, such as the Dutch oriented Hyves, special groups were founded and on the Dutch counterpart of eBay, Marktplaats, a trade has started up in poeremetators. And of course the campaign was the subject of many a radio talk show.

The company had also put their creative minds at work. It developed a search game, wherein people could start hunting for the Poeremetator. In less than one month 51.000 unique visitors visited the game and it was played 58.420 times. The winner received a Sony Vaio micro pc.

The company was disappointed in the number of ordered poeremators. And when a poeremetator was delivered to Overtoom, the employees did not recognise the device.

For the company it was an exciting summer campaign which enforced its brand recognition.

Blog Posting Number: 900


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