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The Zipatoni tomato
|Headquarters||St.Louis, Missouri, United States|
Zipatoni was an American marketing company.
In 1998 Zipatoni had 375 employees with annual billings of approximately $40 million. Its world headquarters is located in St. Louis, and the company has offices in Chicago, San Francisco, Milwaukee, Miami and New York City. Zipatoni clients included Anheuser Busch, Miller-Coors, Coca Cola, Fed-x, The Bacardi Group, Proctor and Gamble, Motorola. In 2007 Zipatoni merged with the IPG's Rivet Global.
Viral marketing controversy
In late 2006, Zipatoni produced an online viral campaign known as "All I want for Christmas is a PSP", for Sony Computer Entertainment America, the makers of the PlayStation Portable (PSP), that combined supposedly amateur videos with a fake blog supposedly written by a friend of the characters in the videos, written in mock leet-speak, stating:
- "we started clowning with sum not-so-subtle hints to j's parents that a psp would be teh perfect gift. we created this site to spread the luv to those like j who want a psp! consider us your own personal psp hype machine, here to help you wage a holiday assault on ur parents, girl, granny, boss - whoever - so they know what you really want."
When both the videos and the blog were discovered to have been created by the company as part of an advertising campaign, they drew widespread criticism on the Internet. The campaign was poorly received by the gaming community, and criticized in the press as being counter-productive.
- Mitchell Bingemann (December 13, 2006). "Fake PSP blog backfires for Sony". PC World. Retrieved April 27, 2011.
- Kris Graft (December 19, 2006). "Sony Screws Up". Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved April 27, 2011.
- Shankar Gupta (December 14, 2006). "Sony Confesses To Creating 'Flog,' Shutters Comments". MediaPost Publications. Retrieved April 27, 2011.
- Shankar Gupta (December 14, 2006). "Sony Campaign Creates Anti-Evangelists". MediaPost Publications. Retrieved April 27, 2011.
- Noelle Weaver (December 18, 2006). "What We Should Learn From Sony's Fake Blog Fiasco". Advertising Age. Retrieved April 27, 2011.
- Nick Farrell (December 15, 2006). "Sony fakes PSP fan site". The Inquirer. Retrieved April 27, 2011.
- Aleks Krotoski (2006-12-11). "New Sony viral marketing ploy angers consumers". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 2010-04-22.