Think it’s a little old by now but nonetheless a fun/silly campaign I came across by the CEI (Competitive Enterprise Institute). In its own words, the CEI is: “a non-profit public policy organization dedicated to advancing the principles of free enterprise and limited government.” In other words: “Darned liberals are robbing us of our freedoms. Sod health, safety and the environment, Hank and Betty gotta be able to afford stuff”.
Anyway, the campaign in question relates to a U.S. Department of Energy requirement that washing machines use 21% less energy, meaning that only top-end machines now apparently get clothes super clean, according to the CEI. So now, from the CEI site, anyone can send an eCard containing their “virtual” underwear to the Secretary of State in protest (there is even a choice of underwear – Bloomers, Underoos, Boxer Shorts or Bikini briefs!) The viral potential of this gimmick would appear to be enormous.
However, the launch video (the CEI have jumped on the YouTube bandwagon and posted it there) has not really caught on. Plus they’ve posted a photo of the Secretary of Energy on Flickr presumably in an attempt to use it as a forum, but that hasn’t worked too well either (no comments yet). Full marks to the CEI for effort though (plus the eCard might have worked really well). With a really valid cause, the combination of a fun gimmick and a good range of web tools with viral potential is a recipe for success.