Tuesday, November 30

Considering Interventions: Help Friends Kick The Traffic Habit

Porsche hits one million fans on Facebook
It's always easy to tell when your communication team's traffic habit has turned into a chronic addiction. The most common symptom is unabashed boasting — companies that celebrate milestones by issuing releases that they've reached a magical benchmark that consists of people who can't afford to buy their product or are well outside their intent for communication.

Don't laugh. Addiction — defined by psychoactive substances which cross the blood-brain barrier once ingested, temporarily altering the chemical milieu of the brain — can happen to anybody, even some of the most respectable brands. And when it happens, the best thing people can do is host an intervention.

Porsche Needs An Intervention.

"Although we are witness to passionate customers and fans every day, it is neat to set another Porsche milestone by growing to over 1,000,000 strong on Facebook," said Josh Cherfoli, online relationship and marketing manager for Porsche Cars North America. "It's an excellent opportunity to help us connect with our fanbase, and we thank them all for sharing our passion."

That was the quote pulled from an actual news release boasting that more than one million people worldwide have shown their love and support for Porsche by, ahem, liking it on Facebook. They even have a reward program for fans willing to give up their friends list, along with all of its demographics.

"As part of the continued celebration, fans can sign-up via Facebook to have their name inscribed on a special Porsche model. This vehicle will then be displayed as part of a unique exhibit at the Porsche Museum in Stuttgart, Germany," says the release.

And, despite this being such a coup for Porsche, it still doesn't trust social media. Photos of new and historical Porsches are only available to accredited journalists on the Porsche Press Database. Whatever that means.

Obviously, Porsche is drunk on traffic, likes, follows, and friendz. On the news that Porsche reached one million, the fans celebrated by mentioning things like "That bloated SUV shouldn't be in the same photo as that beautiful machine," "hello you will join my group sex and sport," "2011 Cayenne S is 'ridiculous'... test drive one if you can," and "My mom told me about this webpage that lets you test a Macbook Air and keep it at no cost!" Ah, isn't one million fans love grand?

As food for thought, you might contrast all that excitement with another fan group for the manufacturer abandoned Infiniti G20 with 1.5 million posts or on its Facebook page. It's not supported by Infiniti or Nissan (as far as I know), but fans there talk about stuff like "how hard is it to take out a G20 trans auto...," "join us for a toys and tots G20 donation drive," and "looking for a GTIR ECU for a decent price trying to give life to my G20." See the difference?

Sure, G20 net hasn't broken one thousand on Facebook, but it's very clear where the real fan love is at, which is a shame because Porsche was one of my favorite childhood car fantasies in the 1980s. Tears even welled up in my eyes when that poor Porsche 928 landed in the lake. But not today. Porsche needs an intervention.
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