Residents were alarmed when they saw a video of a bear in a quiet Singaporean suburb. Philips Electronics now faces police investigation.
The Secret Little Agency, Philips' appointed social media and marketing agency, had filmed what appeared to be a bear foraging at night in a dustbin along a residential street. The video was uploaded to Stomp, a public reporting website with a fake report that the "bear-like creature'' had started to move towards the cameraman, causing him to drive off.
The video went viral on YouTube, garnering over 50,000 hits, and the sighting was reported on various local media over the last two days. Animal rights groups, Wildlife Reserves Singapore and the media sent teams out in a search of the absconding animal yesterday. It was then revealed that the bear was actually a man in a bear suit, and the video was part of a guerilla marketing campaign for Philips shavers.
Calvin Soh, Publicis' vice chairman and chief creative officer, Asia, said the hard part about guerilla marketing is tying it back to the product, making it relevant to both brand and consumer. "Whether the campaign is successful depends on what it's judged by. If the intention is just to get into the news and associate Philips with it, maybe it worked. Will it get me to buy or be interested in it? Not really," he said.
TSLA was not available for comment. Last night, Philips apologised for alarming the public with its publicity stunt. The police are now investigating if the stunt was a public nuisance that breached Section 268 of the Penal Code, which could lead to a S$1,000 fine.