Cows everywhere but nobody has a moo-clue

It all started over at Ask Metafilter April 6, where baltimore wondered what was those cow-posters and the bovineunite.com meant to mean? By April 26th MrDave2176 asked the same thing here; "What is that Bovine Unite stuff?"
Well, personally I couldn't really be bothered with it. I knew it wasn't Chick-a-fil as some people suggested, I thought it made more sense for milk and said so. In the end, it turned out to be for Maryland State Lottery. Say wha? Revolutionary cows are mixed up in this how? This gets funnier as almost at the same time another bunch of cows show up in viral form all over New York.... Making these secret cow teaser campaigns without senders ripe for getting confused.

The second cow campaign starts here "Why are cows planning to invade New York?" over at Adfreak, where commentors take stabs at guessing who might be behind it, and come up with suggestions for everyone from Organic Valley Milk to The Cow Parade. They even get this campaign confused with the bovine unite campaign while they're at it - and who can blame them, Bovine Unite was first in the "mystery cow" department. In a comment to this new cow-mystery baltimore says:

hey all -
i have seen the bovine unite stuff all over baltimore. there were people in cow costumes giving out "bovine unite" business cards. the billboards around town say that "c-day" is 05-05-05, and to watch telelvision at 8:59 pm. sorry i don't know more... i don't really buy the chicken restaurant or the lottery thing, either...
Posted by: baltimore | May 2, 2005 08:45 PM

Well, as Bovine Unite turned out to be a lottery, the other cows were still a mystery for a while, then on monday morning at YesnoButYes moblog had a shot of the cow and promo material tying it to Nestlé, and that afternoon AdFreak finally confirmed that it was Nestlé behind those little cows, as if anyone was holding their breath.

It does make more sense for milk than lotteries, but using random cow also made both campaigns easy to confuse not only with each other but also with California Cheese and Chick-a-Fil who seem to have the mad and happy cows cornered. Worth trying to remember this lesson next time you're about to start a viral and/or teaser campaign, ask yourself what are the above the line campaigns doing, and are there others virals currently running with the same symbols. In the end it just wasn't any fun to guess who's ad either one of these cow-things were, because quite frankly when the "what's in it for me?" is only an answer to satisfy my curiosity, you better make sure that I'm curious first - and I wasn't.
- "Are you selling something to me?"
- "I'm a cow. Mooovolution."
- "What?"
- "Moo."
- "I got better things to do, bye."
- "I'm a lottery! Yoohoo, a lottery, looks, a moovolution, aint that fun?.. Hello...?"


The best cow we've seen so far was when Ben & Jerry's sold cow hugs in Stockholm last summer, to raise money for orphaned children.