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The cartoon from the gapingvoid widget that you’re looking at is a sea change in online marketing and advertising. Like everything else about marketing on the Internet, it is sure to pass right over the heads of big, clueless ad agencies
Hugh Macleod of gapingvoid has been handling the online marketing of Stormhoek wine, a $10 bottle of wine with a scew cap that has become the unofficial geek wine. It’s been marketed to bloggers, many of whom were sent a free bottle, and through geek dinners. The company aims for 100 geek dinners in 100 nights.
A month or so ago, Macleod launched a widget that allows anyone who wants to run his cartoons on their blog to have them fed automatically to them whenever Macleod pens a new one. He said at the time that he might have to ask for some money for the bandwidth, but was making the widget free for starters.
stormhoek_ad.jpgToday, Stormhoek became the sponsor of the widget, paying for the bandwidth and sparking what will undoubtedly be a revolution in advertising. No blinking banners, no annoying pop-ups, no BS, just useful information, packaged in a way that makes it helpful, interesting, and fun.
You don’t even know that Stormhoek is the sponsor until you click to enlarge the cartoon. But, since the cartoons are so compelling, it is extremely likely that you will click on the thumbnail and see the Stormhoek message.
The concept is brilliant: offer people free content they already love and want to share with their readers; have a low-key sponsor whom they also know. Let the concept and the content spread virally. Brilliant!