Woman sues Toyota over disturbing viral marketing emails for the Matrix model | Rpmgo.com

Viral marketing campaigns are a double-edged sword in advertising as if they are played out right, will guarantee a huge awareness for the product or brand which it promotes. But if it isn’t well made and targets the wrong type of consumers, then it will completely fail.

Such is the case with a marketing campaign devised by Saatchi & Saatchi for Toyota’s new Matrix model, which will soon be launched in the United States. The Japanese company started sending out emails to people in its database under various names on behalf of British football/soccer hooligans, which threatened their “victims” with coming to their houses and stalking them.

“Pick one of our maniacs to mess with their heads for five straight days while you sit back and watch it all go down,” revealed the campaign to users.

While most of the people took it in a good mood, Amber Duick became terrified of the man who was emailing her, the fictional hooligan Sebastian Bowler, which caused her to sleep with a machete beneath her bed (!). She is now suing Toyota for $10 million in compensation, saying that the campaign made her unable to work.

“Amber mate! Coming 2 Los Angeles. Gonna lay low at your place for a bit till it all blows over,” one email read, which also contained a link to a fake MySpace page for Bowler which revealed pictures of a pitbull and a blurry photo of many hooligans.

Now the suit will be handled by the Los Angeles Supreme Court, but Toyota is already claiming that Duick freely signed up her email address for marketing campaigns, so it can’t be blamed. “The person who made this claim specifically opted in, granting her permission to receive campaign emails and other communications from Toyota,” a spokesman told ABC News. Duick’s lawyers, on the other hand, reveal that she didn’t know she would be put through such traumatic stress.

Now this whole thing seems to have gotten very much out of control. I usually don’t sign up for any such things, so perhaps the woman should have refrained from doing so, and, when confronted with such emails, to inform the proper authorities. Also, the fact that she slept with a machete under her bed might serve as a warning to her state of mind. What do you think? Drop a comment below or reply to us via our Twitter account.

Source: Telegraph

Post tags : emails, marketing, Toyota, toyota matrix, viral marketing