Mix always likes it when advertising lives up to national
stereotypes, and the worldwide campaign to promote Beenz, the new web
’currency’, is a perfect example.
Beenz are credits which net surfers can accumulate and then use for
activities such as shopping online. They can be exchanged for goods from
sites which have signed up to the scheme. So the company behind the idea
(also called Beenz) aims to get as many commercial sites as possible to
So how is it doing this? Well, in the UK press advertising, through Lowe
Direct, it attempts to persuade businesses that signing up gives their
site extra pulling power. The ad is illustrated with an image of a big
red bean, surrounded by arrows with distinctly sperm-like tails, and the
simple tagword: ’Irresistible’.
A similar strategy has been put in place in Australia. The ad agency,
Lowe Hunt & Partners in Sydney, has clearly also been briefed to produce
work aimed at luring internet companies, rather than consumers. But the
end result is a tad less subtle.
’These Beenz are a fun way to attract customers and are far more
flexible and versatile than money,’ says the text, with the sort of
sincerity that might raise eyebrows among a cynical UK business
audience. But the highlight is the strapline: ’They don’t make you fart.
They make you rich’.
Australians, eh? Smooth-talking bastards, the lot of ’em.
This article was first published on Marketing