This blog has reported on the power that social networks have as part an internet marketing campaign to reach millions of individuals that may have never heard of a company. But one business that used to ask “pardon me” may be turning the idea of social media marketing on its head regardless of permission.
According to Ad Age, when fans of Grey Poupon wish to like the company on Facebook they must first apply to become a member of the “Society of Good Taste.” After doing so, Grey Poupon will comb the applicant’s Facebook page and, through an algorithm that examines the user’s taste in art, restaurant check ins, books and movies as well as his or her grammar, determine if his or her taste is good enough to be accepted.
If the algorithm finds that the user doesn’t meet the society’s standards, the person is rejected and their “Like” is rescinded. They are then prompted to “refine” their profile and try again.
The approach is a play on the company’s famous series of advertisements from 1988 which, itself, played on the idea that Grey Poupon is a rather upscale condiment. By parodying the popular vision of the brand, the company is able to break it down and make itself more acceptable to a wider audience.
It’s a popular tactic amongst celebrities – who, themselves, are a brand – who will visit late night talk shows hosted by comedians. If the guests are unable to take a few jokes from the host on how they present themselves, then their brand image is usually hurt.
Rather than inviting and aggregating as many followers and potential new customers as it can, Grey Poupon is generating buzz by forming a specific, ideal audience. This, in turn, allows the business to run targeted internet marketing campaigns more effectively as it can get a better view of who their ideal customer is.