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October 30, 2012

‘So real, it’s scary’- LG’s new elevator prank story is great in theory, but fails to impress

What started out as an excellent brand storytelling concept for LG has been flamed by social media users and exposed as a probable fake.

The new ad campaign comes from the Netherlands branch of LG electronics to promote their new IPS monitors, where the central idea is that LG’s monitors look as convincing as real life.

LG supposedly builds a fake floor with a grid of IPS monitors to create an optical illusion that the ground is falling away from an office elevator, and films people’s reactions.

A strong and funny concept were it not for problems of visual perspective and viewpoints, mild reactions of the people being pranked, and the reflection of a green screen clearly seen at 1:26 in the video.

Because of this, many social media users are discussing the possibility of LG’s campaign being orchestrated with actors and post-production rather than it being a live stunt. And it’s diluting its impact. Is it hurting the brand?

The YouTube video comments have many negative reactions, some pointing out that if the filmed reactions were real, people wouldn’t jump to the parts of the floor that were falling away. That would, however, happen with an actor working with a green screen below them.

“The film highlights the lifelike colors and image quality of IPS technology, no matter which angle the monitor is viewed from,”  said LG spokeswoman Sabrina Eilers. “The film was made to promote the IPS monitors and we leave it to the imagination of the viewers what happened on the set.”

Whether fake or not, one Twitter user responding to Mashable‘s CEO Pete Chashmore’s question on the authenticity of the campaign said, “It’s not so important, the idea is original.”

We agree. Well done to LG, but it’s an important lesson on social media backlash.

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About the Author

Evon Koprowski
Brand storyteller, creative strategist, content marketer and all round bon vivant at Red Fortune Media where I growth hack projects for the arts, culture, tourism, technology and social sectors. I'm freelance - if I can help you, get in touch.

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