I Hate Sarah Marshall

Quirky little anecdote of how social networking and the main stream are converging – for the better or worse.

For those who have not seen the trailers and commercials for the upcoming Judd Apatow movie, “Forgetting Sarah Marshall” – the story centers around a man left broken hearted by an ex-girlfriend (obviously named Sarah Marshall, following me?)

The marketing push runs the gamut. From billboards around the nation to a blog maintained by the fictional character, Peter Bretter, it’s an onslaught on all fronts with the key message: “I Hate Sarah Marshall”.

Interestingly, a colleague of mine has the maiden name of Sarah Marshall.  At first, she admitted being a bit offended and hurt by the billboards and the Facebook group – unknowingly that it was promotional gear for the movie.

Soon, concerned friends and family began emailing and posting on her wall wondering why someone would be so spiteful.  Perhaps it was an angry client or ex-boyfriend /ex-husband or pissed-off acquaintance?

Yesterday, a reporter from a large national paper contacted Sarah to comment on a story that focused precisely on these marketing tactics. The reporter wrote:

I’m doing a story on the ads for the movie Forgetting Sarah Marshall. (the ads are a bit harsh!  they say things like: “My mom always hated you Sarah Marshall.”)   So I wanted to see if anyone really named Sarah Marshall had seen the ads — and if so, what they thought of them.

Ha! She had tracked Sarah down via Facebook.

Example plays as a great reminder that everything has a digital footprint. Also, it’s intriguing and exciting to know the alternative avenues people use to gather information.

I’ve always promoted tools on the Internet – as just that – tools.

I’ve started a large push internally for these tools, and am always faced with the same questions from my colleagues: “Why do I need to use that? And, how do I use it effectively/efficiently?”

Still, grappling with a boilerpoint answer for these. What would your answer be?

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