In one of the strangest twists we’ve seen recently in advertising, Air New Zealand decided to kill off its sleazoid, rat-puppet character “Rico”.
In case you missed it, Rico got famous for saying things like, “I love her bush—it’s amazing,” in ‘reference’ to New Zealand. Uh huh. Even Lindsey Lohan got in on the act (surprise, surprise). Yeah, that went well.
Anyway, Rico recently came to his untimely – or rather timely, depending on how you look at it – death. As a last-ditch attempt to cash in via social media, Air New Zealand conducted a Clue-like game to find Rico’s celebrity killer. The person who determined the killer also won a prize including airfare to Los Angeles, hotel time, and a visit to Universal Studios and Disney.
Image: Air New Zealand
Air New Zealand is hardly the first to run a purely online social media-driven campaign to attract more flyers. On the other end of the decorum spectrum, earlier this year KLM ran a campaign using Twitter and Foursquare to look for passengers who had just checked in and were waiting to board their flight.
Staff would scan a flyer’s social media profile, and buy them a gift from duty free, presenting it to them as they boarded the plane. KLM only purchased 40 “presents”, but got over a million impressions on Twitter.
As for Air New Zealand, we’re sure they have something up their sleeve to continue the scandalous-ness. But in case you want to know Rico’s killer, check out Bye Bye Rico.