Monday, 14 April 2008

Don't Elfyourself, buy a stapler instead

I was a bit surprised to see that you can no longer Elf Yourself and your friends at This campaign generated quite of bit of buzz in general over the Christmas holidays and some criticism in internet marketing circles since many marketers couldn't see how the massively popular campaign was benefiting the office supplies chain who made it (I will not name them or link to them here just so you can guess who they are because research shows most people don't remember).

Elfyourself was hilarious (see this random video or search Youtube for elfyourself if you by any chance missed the elfs completely). Through a very innovative and usable flash interface it allowed you to enter face shots of your friend, fit them onto elf bodies, and send out links to the elfs singing and dancing.

I am not sure I like the current move: I went to Elfyourself with an objective and instead I was told Elves are gone and the office supplies store is still here. Of course, no 'elf scent' on the landing page and a disappointed potential future client who did not care for a stapler.

Now I wonder, are the elves gonna be back for the third year in a row next Christmas? Should they have left the application alive during the year? Should they have dealt differently with telling us the application is not on during the year? How would you play this?