Lonelygirl15: Lessons in Viral Hoax Marketing

Slumdance has a fascinating piece on the debunking of Lonelygirl15. Really, this one is absolutely a must read!

Amid the detailed analysis of how Lonelygirl15 was exposed is this gem on viral marking a faux documentary:

The story is not king. In conventional film and TV writing, a commitment to Aristotelian principles wisely ranks story at the top of the list. All other elements are subordinate to the plot. But in mock-doc, the style takes story’s place at the top. Not one single idea should make it into the piece if it is not 100% consistent with the central conceit. Because in this form of fiction, unlike most others, one inconsistent part can destroy the whole.

Very interesting! Imagine building link bait where the story is not central to (and often a detriment) its’ success.

Business week confirmed that the story was, in fact, a fake: edit: a likely scenario goes something like this (ty LG15fanclub)

Lonelygirl15 is not “real,” but, contrary to some early speculation, the videos are not part of a viral marketing campaign dreamed up by some major advertiser, nor some music marketing company, nor a promotional stunt set up by one of the Viacoms or NBCs of the world.

So what’s this have to do with SEO? Everything! Hoax marketing is like link building on Nitro. Once you get your head around that, you will have such a huge advantage over other SEOs and Copywriters that you will wonder how you ever promoted with out it.

A reader emailed me:

I read your article on “switching to self-employed“. I like my current job (LAMP stuff), but being my own boss is really tempting. Would you have any advice for me? Going adult is an option but I heard that’s not so easy as it used to be – very competitive.

Any ideas appreciated.

Become the best link bait professional in the world. Learn everything that is involved in viral and hoax marketing. Get the instant messenger IDs for influential bloggers and start up a dialog so they know you. Build social networking site teams. Come up with amazing link bait and ask for links: real link bait – stuff that has a chance to go viral.

You do that and you will never need a “Job” again.

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4 Responses to “Lonelygirl15: Lessons in Viral Hoax Marketing”

  1. lurkster says:

    I’m sure this is the exact thing LG15 was going for. A huge viral buzz. Word spreads like wild fire… I got to hand it to the creators, genuis! Now big box businesses are sure to follow suit to push promotions to this impressionable demographic.

  2. [...] Top Of The Tube has no taste in swimming attire. One Pieces are in. Daniel Phillip has just discovered lonelygirl15. He seems hooked as well. He also links to this site which is appreciated. Voyager.commendo.com introduces some of us to Lazydorks video: LonelyGirl: Lazydork is Better Than You by rickyste. Caution – the word ‘Booyah’ is used. ChillDogg responds to the Lonelygirl15 swimming video with a video of her own. Farm animals are also featured in this video. Overtime Comedy says “mr. t ate my balls and won my heart“. Geoffrey explains by saying he missed the train on the last big fad which apparently was Mr.T saying “Ate your Balls”. I must’ve missed that one. Is Lonelygirl15 and Danielbeast the new “fad”? Maybe. TheNewMarketing Blog reiterates some of the earlier beliefs and reposts some of the ARGN article. Nothing new. SEOBlackHat has thrown in their 2-bits worth on the Lonelygirl15 phenom’. They do slip up in their analysis by misreading Jon Fines bit ‘A likely Scenario‘ by stating it as fact instead as it was intended… A likely scenario. Blackhatseo says this: Business week confirmed that the story was, in fact, a fake: [...]

  3. [...] Keyword Search Referrals Fortuny 3151 lonelygirl15 715 [...]

  4. [...] 2. Hoax Marketing – The idea here is to create a phenomenon that takes on a life of it’s own, gets people talking, and becomes a meme… a virus that works in your benefit to spread the word of your identity, your site, your product, etc… There are so many ways to execute this concept, and you can read a bit more about it here. [...]