Advertising with flies has to be simultaneously one of the ingenious and disturbing marketing tactics in history. Watch the above video of the Frankfurt book fair to see unsuspecting people’s minds blown as a house fly buzzes by trailing a tiny red advertising banner like one of those planes at the beach. I don’t know how effective it would be once the novelty wore off, but in this instance, there were bookworms aplenty stalking flies with their fancy digital cameras, hoping to get a picture. If you have the kind of business where any publicity is good publicity (check your spam box), then this may be your next gimmick.
Before you run off to rile up PETA, the flies were supposedly not harmed, and were only attached by a small amount of wax which fell off in time. You might think I’m kidding about PETA, but they already went after Barack Obama earlier this year for swatting a fly that landed on his arm. I’m not a fan of cruelty to insects, but a swatted fly is hardly cause for a national incident.
I wonder if this adverfliesing was inspired by the recent Bill Gates talk where he released a swarm of mosquitoes on the crowd at the beginning of his speech about the death toll of malaria.