When Cole, Russel & Pryce in Stockholm sent out their (e)mailers to advertise themselves and their new website, they probably didn't expect their own clients would have a cow over their creative ideas.
The campaign - perhaps a homage to the National Lampoons "If You Don't Buy This Magazine We'll Kill This Dog" cover - consisted of emailalerts at first, depicting this adorable little lamb, asking people to visit CR&P's homepage "for the sake of the lamb".....
The next day, people received another email, this time showing the lamb lacking a front-hoof - the very same day 90 chosen colleagues and clients received a real lamb hoof in a box delivered to their offices.
Soon, the advertising world of Sweden turned into a zoo, when the tradepress reported about the unusual mailer, more than a hundred people commented, some loving the idea - "I'm suddenly very popular among the ad agency dogs, Thanks CR&P" said one - other hating it with as much vitriol as they could muster.
"That campaign showed incredibly bad judgement" said Lena Eklund at Vodafone according to Resume. "Of course we wondered if something like that might happen again, and how the agency could assure us that it wouldn't. We are very pleased that they acted so fast."
Eva Söderström, press manager at Djurens Rätt said: "It's pretty obvious what we think of that campaign."
What the agency did to appease the clients Vodaphone and Djurens Rätt was to fire the Creative Director, founder and part owner of the agency, Olle Sjödén effective immediately. The agency also said to Resume that the campaign has felt like "Olles thing" from the start, and when it caused such an outrage, the easiest way out was to let Sjödén take the responsibility for it, and go.
From the many angry comments at the Resumé article about the chopped off hoof, one gathers people were most mad about the fact it had nothing to do with the site, and the site wasn't up to the stunts standard.
So remember that kids, next time you get a little photoshop happy and gather some butcher waste to mail out to clients, there should be a point - a message if you will - to your wacky stunt, and not just as Paul Arden always says "a cleverly placed fart", as the latter may turn around and bite you.