A Visible typo as a clever marketing gimmick

I had written earlier about Amazon picking an intentionally self-deprecating hashtag to attract attention. It was literally a call-to-action to people to go, “Hey look, they made a blunder!”.
See: A shit hashtag, for a reason.

Here’s another brand using the same tactic really well!

Visible, a Denver, Colorado-based telecommunications company recently went to town with its new campaign that consisted of about 150 billboards.

The communication in almost all of them was a standard, “Unlimited messages, minutes, and data on Visible’s $40/mo phone service”.

A handful of those billboards had a typo. Instead of ‘messages’, it said, ‘massages’! Now, this was intentional, of course.

As expected, the social media messages started trickling in almost immediately. Various opinions were offered – #fail, fire your copywriter, who is your agency? and so on.

Right off the start, Visible was taking on everyone who pointed out the ‘typo’ with witty responses.

A week later, they made good on the promise! They actually had a day of free massages (September 21) and that included massages for pets too!

For a new, small brand, this is a remarkably clever way to attract attention.

PS: This is not the first time ‘message’ has been converted into a ‘massage’. The most famous instance of ‘message’ becoming ‘massage’ was for the cover of Marshall McLuhan’s iconic book, “The Medium is the Massage: An Inventory of Effects”.

Yes, you read that right! It was a typo. And this is what McLuhan’s son had to say about it.



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