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Wal-Mart Screws Up Two Campaigns In A Week

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So, apparently, it seems Wal-Mart needs to go ahead and fire whoever’s working on their online marketing campaign. Two separate aspects of the campaign have been blasted in just a week. One angered parents, the other was exposed as a fraud.

To answer Tom Siebert‘s question about what to call a blog that’s actually a front for a huge corporation (he suggested ‘flog’), I still prefer my own coined and unadopted neologism, “fraug,” for fraud blog.

What used to be the “Wal-Marting Across America” blog is no more, after BusinessWeek exposed that the dude who claimed to be half of an average American duo traveling across the country in an RV, camping in Wal-Mart parking lots, was actually a Washington Post photographer by the Jim Thresher.

Oops.

Rule #1 for corporate blogging: Be authentic. Don’t lie. This isn’t TV. You will be found out, and it won’t be pretty.

A week earlier, Wal-Mart was blasted by parents after its microsite Toyland, featured elves encouraging kids to take a look at what toys were on the conveyor belt. Kids viewing the site could select what toys they wanted, which would compile a wish list that would be sent to their parents.

Child protection advocates and parents threw fits. The email registration didn’t require parental consent. Opponents criticized the site because it encouraged kids to nag their parents and was insensitive to whether parents could afford the toys.

Not to mention that it kind of screws up the whole Santa Claus thing.

Rule #1 for Christmas marketing: Don’t screw up the Santa Claus thing.

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Wal-Mart Screws Up Two Campaigns In A Week
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