So, have you heard about the new movie comign out called The Jonses? Here's a brief description:   


When the gorgeous Kate and Steve Jones (Moore and Duchovny) move into a wealthy suburb with their equally alluring teens Jenn and Mick (Heard and Hollingsworth), the locals notice their fabulous clothes, gadgets and cars. And of course start trying to keep up with them. But the Joneses aren't a family: they're a team of marketing experts whose performances are measured by how they affect sales in this town. And as they work to keep their boss (Hutton) happy, their neighbours (Headley and Cole) are paying a heavy price.

This movie comes out at a time when stealth marketing — or roach bait marketing, as it was called in 2002 (seriously!) — is coming back to the fore.

The topic has been hotly contested in the Experiential Marketing Forum. Party because of this story that got picked up by the New York press.

The general concensus is that this is bad. But is it? I mean, it's kind of experiential. It's personal. It's contextual and memorable. All of that is pretty good, innit? Except for the non-disclosure part. But is that so wrong?


  1. I agree that it’s not really clear if it’s wrong, but I will say this. We hear a lot of people in the ad biz say that thanks to social media, marketing is all about building relationships and transparency. I talk about the need for brands to be authentic. So, how much can you build a relationship when you start by deception? Surely there can be just as effective ways to engage with the audience and be upfront with them, right? I’m sure this will debate will continue for a while. And thanks for the link to my blog post!

  2. Marilyn Casey "Communications Damage Undone" · · Reply

    Hey, isn’t this social marketing to the nth degree? People have been attempting to keep up with or “better” the Joneses since I don’t know when (the phrase originated, I think, in the 1950s). Non-disclosure. Hmph. Buyer beware!

  3. If blogs have to disclose their relationship with vendors whose wares they tout, shouldn’t humans? Or are blogs more influential than people?

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