Air New Zealand's furry pervert

A friend of mine once flew from Frankfurt back to New Zealand after a couple of months backpacking around Europe. After enjoying one too many Bratwurst with her Weissbier and Kuchen with her Kaffee, the, erm, twins had grown considerably.

She was pretty self-conscious about them, and took to wearing loose clothing. For the flight back to New Zealand she was in jeans and a T-shirt – not exactly the stuff erotic dreams are made of.

But it seems it was all too much for a crusty old man sitting across the aisle and one seat up from her, who was two spark plugs away from blowing a gasket.

Throughout the flight, he would crane his neck, turning to stare, to the point where she wanted to inform him, “Those aren’t my eyes”.

Eventually she put a sweater on, his open leering making her distinctly uncomfortable. That didn’t deter him. He only ceased once she raised her middle finger and mouthed some four-letter words at him.

Such a scenario isn't uncommon. Very few women [generalisation alert] would be able to claim they’ve never been leered at, groped, touched against their will or been spoken to in a filthy manner.

Meanwhile, it’s a stretch for some men – who typically aren’t subjected to the same treatment – realise how badly unwanted sexual contact or communication affects the victim, or how the memories stick with them.

Society seems to have an invisible line drawn between outright sexual offences that beg prosecution and something that is usually brushed off, such as a “Show us yer tits, love” yelled out from a building site.

However, the concept of “verbal rape” is certainly one that’s tossed around in linguistic circles.

It describes an indecent communication that makes the recipient uncomfortable.  Some would say it’s going a step too far to worry about verbal rape. In Scotland, it’s a jailable offence.

Air New Zealand’s new potty-mouthed puppet Rico would find himself striped up and in the slammer in no time.

The first time I saw the ads, I sort of half-laughed. Since then, I’ve felt vaguely uncomfortable about them, but I couldn’t quite put my finger on it. However, the terms “verbal rape” and “indecent communication” describe the filthy muppet to a tee.

Air New Zealand has kindly created a verbal rapist and let him loose upon the world.

I can’t imagine anything worse than having to sit next to a pervert like Rico on a flight – even if it were only Auckland to Hamiltron – and whenever I think about Air New Zealand now, I get a vaguely uneasy feeling.

Like my friend with her oversized norks made to feel uncomfortable by the leering git across the aisle, the prospect of Rico’s innuendos being cracked within your immediate vicinity – and being unable to get away – is distinctly unpleasant and invokes a feeling of uneasiness.

What he does with those gropey little hands under the cabin blanket is another matter altogether.

Ultimately, the muppet is not a creation Air New Zealand should be proud of. It’s frightening the airline thinks that a creepy, furry, latent offender is the best way to represent our national carrier – and our country.

The only way it can redeem itself after this is to rescind the ads, appoint a lead agency that understands long-term brand building, and quit with the sexy times.

(The real mystery here is why Air New Zealand isn't attempting ads that show off its product. Excellence abounds, so why not highlight it?)

Perverts aside, it seems unfortunately Rico is here to stay, and he’s going to get "edgier". While Air New Zealand isn’t keen to talk about the muppet, CEO Rob Fyfe said in an international interview that we’ve only had a glimpse of him so far, and that the puppet himself will be seen on flights.

“How do you reach out to different markets?” Mr Fyfe said. “If you put a human into the ads, you stereotype people’s image of what sort of people you’re trying to engage with.”

Agency 99 may not be to blame. Mr Fyfe said the catalyst came from Air New Zealand internally, while the agency helped bring it to life.

“The idea of using a character like Rico is that you can appeal to a broad cross-section of our customer base. We don’t want it just to be adult humour, or just to appeal to people like you and I – probably a bit weird – we want it to get out there and reach everyone.”

Qantas here we come.


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Yawn!

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I agree with you, Hazel. I was disappointed in the ads - they seemed to cheapen the airline, which has built a reputation for excellence and being something we can all be proud of.

Also, if you are going to do "Borat" humour, it had better be good. This isn't.

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I agree too. Disgusting ads and really lame humour.

Dirty old men on a plane? No thanks.

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Verbal rape?! Lighten up.

Anyone who uses the word 'norks' in a story has no journalistic credibility anyway.

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Really bad representation of our national carrier.

I wonder if the staff are allowed to talk like that?

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I was taken aback by just how ugly the creature is? This deformed and hideous monster degrades the branding of the airline. It's the same kind of mindlessness that went with the, "Whoo-whoo" campaign. Unthinking and Out of Touch.

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It's cheap and corny advertising. Pity to see 'New Zealand' alongside it.

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Bad representation of our country and yes you're right, will be offputting for a lot of people.

9.28 pretty obvious you're from Colenso 99. They're bad ads, accept it and go back to your retail brochures.

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Most Air New Zealand things are quite delightful - and delighted customers or potential customers is really what the aim of any brand should be.

The problem is that Ad agencies and airlines are in two different businesses - and ad agencies compete with each other on 'edginess' or 'setting trends' or whatever. Airlines compete on entirely different dimensions, or should anyway. 1% of customers are going to care about how edgy you are. 99% wonder what the hell it is that you are trying to tell them.

I laughed at the bodypaint safety video (more than once - I fly a lot) - as it delighted me and demonstrated a difference to other airlines' I like the Rugby safety video - it affirms a stated dimension of Air NZ.

Rico? I don't get it - it doesn't tie in to any dimension, doesn't tell me anything about the airline - but it does say an awful lot about the ad agency.

Air NZ, you let your agency dictate your brand and lost sight (and control) of it.

I'll still fly, but I'm not actually happy about it.

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It's the other way around 10.13. This is Air NZ dictating to the agency.

Their advertising has jumped the shark.

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This really shows new zealand is to stuck up for their own good.

edgy ads is what makes this ad what it is, and that is time we live, i am sorry but the generation we live in don't want to see conservative ideas.

it's here to stay people, go out and travel more people, this is nothing compare to the bigger cities of this world and we need to keep up with the time. It's understandable this may shock us because we as a country we are still babies and learning, just look at fast broadband for example other countries are well beyond fibre optics, let's not look at that but look at wanganui they have free wi-fi!!!!! but auckland don't, so we are people still got a lonng way to compare with the best out there.

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AMEN!

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As a mature male with over 30 years success in marketing, advertising and the media, I think the whole concept is pointless. It's like a hack comedian trying to tell a joke that went out of vogue 20 years ago - and does nothing to enhance the airline's credibility. I watched the first two..because of Air NZ's previous promotions.but why would I want to watch any more? No reason - they're like someone trying to prove they're "creative" or clever without actually having a message. Would it make me or anyone else want to fly ANZ? You already know the answer to that...

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I have not seen any of these ads except the still picuters (like the one in this article). Based on that limited exposure I don't even want to see any video clips. I am afraid that I will be embarassed by what i see.

Unfortunatly for Air NZ we do judge books by the cover

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IS apparently an American Agency running the show.

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I think you all need to get a life of you have that much time to write this much rubbish.

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Wow. Two things stick out to me from this article...

#1
"The first time I saw the ads, I sort of half-laughed. Since then, I’ve felt vaguely uncomfortable about them, but I couldn’t quite put my finger on it. However, the terms “verbal rape” and “indecent communication” describe the filthy muppet to a tee".

Umm... that's quite a jump to make... from not quite being able to put your finger on it, to verbal rape. The last 'linguistic circle' you spent time around had quite an influence. Surprising.

#2 "The only way it can redeem itself after this is to rescind the ads, appoint a lead agency that understands long-term brand building, and quit with the sexy times".

Umm... is it just me, or does this smack of bias. I don't suppose you have a 'lead agency' in mind do you? Probably one of those traditional structures which uses all the right rhetoric, but is devoid of ideas which achieve cut through in the online and social environments. This is the landscape this campaign is dealing in. I think Fyfe and the team moved on from traditional messaging a couple years back

Please, this article really smacks of bias. We're smarter than this.

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@ 'Agreed' : True to some extent. This ad campaign was designed to be "hip and edgy"; to break the mould of the banalfied images of the archetype " smiling, happy customer", that has been the mainstay of most airline advertising.

The ad campaign sought to establish a 'point of difference'. But the connotations of the "creature" are confusing and incongruous to the promotion and enhancement of the product. It's bizarre, and conjures up a perception of passenger discomfiture. Well, to me, it does.

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It just shows the lack of intellegence and understanding of the marketplace in Ad agencies. One has to wonder which depressants or pharmeceuticals the employees of ad agencies are on and if many people ever watch the crap ads we get on TV particularly when TV3 shows them every 8mins ad infinitum. The sheer idiocy of some ads reflects the calibre of the creative lack of talent producing them.
Air NZ which had built a great brand is now destroying its mana with this campaign.

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Appalling ad campaign, ultimately price determines air travel, not airline for most people, just look at the success of grabaseat.

I enjoyed the rhetoric Hazel, thank you.

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A couple of points:

1) How does beer and sausage miraculously and almost-instantly increase your bust size? Plastic surgery candidates should be made aware of this - and by this reasoning I should be extremely well endowed.

2) This is a puppet - a fictional character.

3) If sexual comments made by men make them "verbal rapists", then the provocative way most women dress [generalisation alert] would make them "optical prostitutes".

3) These advertisements are not everywhere and unescapable as you claim they are. They are "on demand", meaning you have to search for, and conciously select the video in order to view it. Plus, each video has a warning at the beginning, advising that content may not be suitable for some viewers.

4) Interesting how you bring what seems a personal vendetta against dirty old men intio a debate about an airline advertising gimmic.

I am not a huge fan of Rico, but I am also not offended by the message he delivers.

And hey, ultimately the aim of advertising is to get your brand out there - and no one can deny that Air New Zealand is on everyone's lips.

As they say, there is no such thing as bad advertising.

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Regardless of the ad, we will still all fly Air NZ because there isn't any real competition. Not locally anyway.

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Rico made me cringe. I live in the U.S. and travel a lot. This doesn't represent N.Z. at its best. The carrier does carry the national brand.

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Nerve well and truly touched, Hazel

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Get over it... what a load of PC rubbish written here. Stop over analysing the damn thing - it's a bit of fun

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I love how the writer talks about inappropriate comments to women, sexism etc.... but then uses the term "oversized norks"

Take a lesson from this guy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hMtZfW2z9dw

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Benny Hill is 'edgy'. I guess you place your product where you want it.

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“How do you reach out to different markets?” Mr Fyfe said. “If you put a human into the ads, you stereotype people’s image of what sort of people you’re trying to engage with.”

Ooookay. But Mr Fyfe, there ARE humans in the ads. Uncomfortable, offended, creeped-out humans. That's who you're trying to engage with? And you're inviting them to try Air NZ because...???!

Ad fail, to the max!

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There's only usually one new ad idea in New Zealand a year anyway, then the agencies rip it off for every product in their portfolios. Appalling.

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Hazel: "Since then, I’ve felt vaguely uncomfortable about them, but I couldn’t quite put my finger on it"

Are you sure about that? While, Rico is small in stature, he's "big" where it counts.

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what a disappointment, after readign teh headline I thought this was an article about Rob Fyfe !

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Hazel - with the disclosure that, being a male I'm immediately classified as a rapist, visual or otherwise, I'd have to say you're being precious here.

It's a puppet you know?

Remember the two old geezers in the Muppets? They were a pain in the arse but people laughed because they were a caricature of real life. And because they ere funny. And because through a touch of anthropomorphism we can laugh at ourselves.

Rob Fyfe isn't suggesting you're going to be leered at or worse by someone or something on an Air New Zealand flight - what he is doing, in a light hearted and attention grabbing way, is to show that New Zealand in general (other than you and a few of your readers of course) and Air New Zealand in particular, know how to have a laugh, be informal and, yes, self deprecate.

Hazel, with the utmost of genuine respect, in this instance I believe you just need to get over it...

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It's a campaign has now been picked up globally because of it's nature, zigging when others are zagging.

As NZers we're already converted so aren't the primary target audience. The idea behind this campaign was to showcase 777 to an international audience.

Let them decide if they like the campaign or not.

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I don't think the Rico thing is that funny or good... but I've been surprised not to see any negative reaction up until now.

It's a bit puerile and infantile, I wouldn't go so far as to describe them as 'verbal rape'. My main concern is that a) the humour gets old, fast b) what on earth does that muppet have to do with Air NZ's brand?
It gets attention but I don't think it's a great campaign.

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What's also problematic is that Air NZ is about to introduce "cuddle class" for the long haul flights. So the implied association between taking a long flight on Air NZ and finding yourself snuggled up next to a pervy creep is kind of a worry.

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Lighten up everyone - as a 63 year old woman who has been thru the Feminist era Women's Lib, burn your bras etc.etc. Rico is a bit of fun that I don't find offensive in the least. I also have a background in the ad industry along with other members of my family - congrats to whoever is behind the creative of Rico. Verbal rape!!! Agree that some comments from men can be offensive but there are ways to deal with those idiots! I lived thru times of many, many builders sites with wolf whistles etc coming my way and it wasn't until somebody told me that they were offensive that I began to question why I was flattered when I heard a whistle! I'd love to hear somebody whistle at me now that I'm 63!!

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When Peter Jackson did sleazy muppets (Meet The Feebles) it was funny. National carrier doing sleazy muppet - not that funny, bit lame really. Will the message travel well internationally?

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If anything, I found your article uncomfortable and blatantly anti-male. When my wife and I first watched these ads we said one thing - "we have the best airline in the world and Rob Fyfe is one of the best CEO's this country has seen". They're willing to be funny, edgy, have a laugh at us, and take a little risk - all very Kiwi things to do. For one, I won't be flying with anyone but Air NZ soon, if I can help it.

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When the talent company calls you and says we want you to audition for these new Air NZ ads and the comments from the person you're speaking to go something like this "When you see the scripts you'll see they're a bit risky, in fact I think they're crap, and if they ever do see the light of day, I'm sure they will be subject to a broadcasting complaint..." makes me wonder if Rob Fyfe and team need to pay more attention to the industry advice I'm sure they got when they first mooted the ads, instead it looks like they are blinded with mis-perceptions of their own marketing abilities.

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Anon at 11.04am 'Optical Prostitutes'

LOL As a stale pale male Im fed up to the back teeth with the PC cultural rubbish that gets shoved down my throat 24/7

You have given me and my discriminated species the perfect retort and foil to the fools.

Optical Prositutes will be my default retort.

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All publicity is good publicity Hazel.

Your generous column inches have only helped Air New Zealand with more media exposure which was prob. their viral aim (same goes for their Cougar outing).

Optical prostitute vs. verbal rape? V good insight Appalled.

Perhaps you need to put this campaign into context and balance - it's all about humour which is obviously subjective. Grabaseat, ATW award, Conde Naste Awards, Cuddle Class, reading kids stories in flight...they seem to be doing something right and good on them for trying something different even if it doesn't work.

We need to celebrate, vs. punish, courage in New Zealand so why don't we give them a bit of slack. Keep it up AIr NZ. The intent is right.

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well said!

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the ad has worked a treat - the old adage - the only thing worse then being talked about, is not being talked about! Love or hate it, the ad has huge cut thru as you are all commenting

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"Edgy"? It's pathetic and embarrassing. The one I saw featured the hideous puppet with some t***er of an actor mugging and overacting as the puppet made one feeble double entendre after another.

Nothing creative about it - just tragic. If that's how Air NZ want to be seen the good news is there'll be a lot more empty seats and lower fares. I don't understand how this can be good for business.

Do they really think that a bunch of penniless, infantile generation z's (or whatever we are up to now), out of work and living with their parents, are going to flock to the airline as a result of this crass drivel?

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Is it not succeeding by the mere fact you've passionately written a big article about Rico?

The best "love marks" in the world create passion both ways, Some people love Apple and will defend as if it's their own, others hate it's controlling nature and it polarizes people.

Rico has got you talking, and I think it's a bit of a stretch to say it's offensive. You may not like him, but that's something entirely different.

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John Doe - well said

Hazel - hate to think how offended you were by my Grandma running naked during their current satefy video

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I think Rico is very funny - puerile perhaps but not at all offensive - I am a average norked adult female who travels a lot, often with my kids. I would invite him to sit next to us

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"average norked" the NBR pages reache new heights in journalism

;-)

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I think Rico is funny - puerile perhaps but not offensive - I am an average norked female, who flys a lot, often with my kids - I would invite Rico to sit next to us

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these ads are off-brand for AirNZ and alienate female passengers. it'll probably win an axis award, but won't sell more seats for air nz.

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At least I can choose to turn the offending advertising off - unlike the equally taste-lacking safety video with the cabin attendant in the skin-tight uniform (or is that uniform-coloured body paint) that I am compelled by Civil Aviation Authority legislation to watch each time I fly with Air New Zealand

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your friends Norks would hve atracted attention no matter where she was be it on a plane or on the ground.. how this relates to Air NZ who have done an amazing job of making other airlines look average is bit of a stretch . Most blokes I know are pretty decent so the whole verbal rapist thing just reeks of you having a bad day... get over it

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I am not offended by it. It's just not funny or clever or original. Remind you of Telecom's Clever Toys?

The bodypaint safety video and the current rugby-themed one both hit the spot. This is embarassing.

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Hey, Hazel -- if I were to gobble heaps of "the Bratwurst with Weissbier and Kuchen and Kaffee", can I expect to benefit from..err.. enlargement?

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the big question is doews this wonder food enlarge mens bits as well? Look out rico!

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I think that Rico is poor at english grammar, i.e. he's not being deliberately dirty. So your comments about a dirty old man are irrelevant and you're trying to push another agenda and assuming that by shaming Air NZ it will give that agenda some airtime.

Even if the ad doesn't appeal to you, it might to some of the other 4 million that Air NZ are trying to reach.

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I know it's a position that will get shot down in flames but surely there is still a place for some leaders/organisations to set some moral standards? I posted the comment below on another advertising/marketing site on 14 May after the 'Listener' affair and still feel the same:

Is it me, or have Air New Zealand got a little big for their boots recently? Over the last few years the way they've developed their service delivery has been quite stunning. Their adoption of digital channels and intuitive understanding of the customer experience is a case study in service delivery (I've lost count of how many people I've shown my mPass iPhone app to). As well as delivering a great service, they also delivered on their New Zealandness. Fyfe was 'one of us' but a great leader too.
And then suddenly they got irreverent, a little arrogant and more polarising than they needed to be. Cougars and P-addicts in the ad campaigns, and now Fyfe signing the word 'bollocks' in a video response to a magazine article that was unfavourable to them. Word has it that Geoff Ross has been consulting to Air New Zealand and doesn't there now seem to be an element of 'fx$k you' about them that never existed before, and has more than a hint of 42 Below about it?
I hope they don't lose sight of their core proposition. Air New Zealand's job is to fly people from A to B. And they have to do it 1) safely, 2) on time 3) in comfort and 4) at a good price. Nothing else really matters (although it is great that they fly the flag for NZ the way they do, have nice uniforms etc).
I think it's fantastic that they welcome big marketing ideas. And sure they can be entertaining, create personality, make Grab a Seat edgy if they think they must, but I hope they don’t let the brand gurus put them into territory they'll look foolish in if (God forbid) anything goes wrong with one of their flights. A bank might drop some money into the wrong account or have a phishing problem, a mobile phone provider might have a network outage, a power company might turn the lights off for a while. Air New Zealand's worst-case catastrophe is much, much bigger. That has to be a factor as they develop their brand personality. Sounds a bit dramatic, but one day it might happen.
But more than anything, when you become arrogant you inherently lose your New Zealandness. And I don't think Air New Zealand should let that happen.

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The new campaign is a success if it can generate this much extra controversy and subsuquent publicity for free!

In reality, as an animal, Rico would likely be travelling in the cargo hold without the food & beverage service nor any IFE.

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Looks like the Air NZ social media team are out in force, judging by some of these comments!

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Hellos Hazel,

I am most upset that you think I am verbal rapper.

I love it if you come visit me on the book of the face and meet my friends. We talk many things, but not rap. My English rhyming is, how you say it, whacked. And I cannot weetbox.

Love,

Rico

http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/rico

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so you want to use qantas now ?

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10:28 I agree with you, conservative does not get you noticed in the global aviation environment.

10:58 Spot on! AirNZ have generated lots of media interest & discussion because of Rico, which is what it's all about......
When most airlines are just climbing out of a big hole, AirNZ is again showing it's creativity and innovation and that it's not afraid to 'shake things up' (not norks) a bit.

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I think that a lot of commentators here are missing the point. Generating noise is easy, and the airline will congratulate themselves on that. It is easy to do.
But turning that noise into brand preference is the hard thing. And really the point of creating noise in the first place. The airline haven't understood or made this step.
Rico is noise, check. Rico grows brand preference? Maybe for a beer brand, or jeans, possibly. For our national airline? That marketing team should be shot.

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Air NZ no longer has a marketing dept. It has a "creative shop". It doesn't have marketing and brand managers, it has "producers". It is openly up fort taking "ideas" from anyone and anywhere. Often the "ideas" come from within their "creative shop" and are pushed out to agency suppliers to work up. Fragmented, one-off "campaigns" are the natural result of this. Some are better than others. Mostly all they have in common are a certain "irreverent" tone of voice. Sometimes the tone is pitched a little off key, sometimes a lot. The current fever for social media channels has a big part to play in this too. This is a great si situation for indies and smaller outfits who get a wacky bit of work out here and there, but long term it makes for a fairly confused brand. Still, at least it's interesting, even if it occasionally misfires.

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disclaimer - I won a teeshirt. Love Rico . Its exactly what I thought it would end up being - a slow burning campaign testing whats at the margins of acceptability of social media and I thought it capitalises on our ability to LOL at our selves. It success is that it engages.
As this article rightly says.. and as for the best thing to come out of this ? The term optical prostitutes. So does Rico induldge in verbal rape - nah...

Mind you wearing his face on my chest means that some of my assets are getting an unusual amount of attention this morning.. And at 50 - thats pretty cool. AIRNZ and Rico - you do the rock.

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The advert is a success, it got the attention of all of you.

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Were you all the same lot that complained about Paul Henry?

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The last thing a woman wants to worry about, on a long-haul flight where she is going to try to sleep, is some creepy pervert bothering her. In case you haven't read about them, there have been cases where men have sexually assaulted women on planes while the women slept. Now, Air NZ is saying that sexual innuendos are OK on long-haul flights. Thank you, Air NZ, for spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to encourage perverts and make women on your flights feel less comfortable.

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Air NZ has amazing service and great product...the awards that they have earned recently are a testament to this and they are doing an amazing job. However these type of ads (cougar, listener response etc) seem aggressive, old fashioned ( use of puppets) and out of step with how a world class airline should and could be promoting itself. The Rico ad feels like it was modelled on some inappropriate, booze fuelled marketing staff retreat at Waiheke island (mmmmm).....good to know what type of behaviour and attitude is acceptable on Air NZ flights thank you Air NZ for informing us.

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Puerile humour, and not particularly clever either. Clicking through to some profiles on youtube, it seems the majority people who 'like' the youtube videos are teenage boys who also like Jackass stunts, the clip of an overweight child singing the cupcake song and footage of exploding zits - not exactly the people who will be buying loads of long-haul airline tickets.

Also, for those who cry "PC gone mad!!" a-la the Paul Henry debacle: there's a difference between being un-PC, and being ill-informed and offensive.

Get a clue.

End rant.

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I love them.
Hazel relax

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Completely ridiculous ads, and some of the comments supporting them are also ridiculous.

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Good on you Hazel for seeing right through the Air NZ disinformation machine.

I'm sure, like clockwork, Air New Zealand's misogyny machine will soon have you in the crosshairs. Fob Ryfe will make personal attacks on you the same way he did to the Listener's Pam Stirling when she critically analyzed the airline's spiralling brand management.

That's what happens to women who think for themselves in Fob Ryfe's Fyfedom.

I can see that Fob's spin doctors are already spamming blog posts to this page in an effort to run away from the verbal rape revelation. The airline has an entire budget for these morons to manipulate social media and they do opinion management all over the place - youtube comments especially. Not much on facebook because they have no friends.

I think psychologists call that kind of manipulation Rape Denial.

Notice how Rico doesn't actually fulfil any marketing basics. No product or price for example. Compare that to JetStar.

I said JETSTAR.

Did that just make you think of the color orange and a low price with big white fonts? I bet it did.

But in the absence of the basics, Fob Ryfe will try anything, even verbal rape, if that's what it takes to distract people from the message that's missing...the message that Rico doesn't want you to know.

That's right.

There's a very big stink.

Rico is a tool (in more than one sense) to divert customer attention from the impending backlash the airline's new in-flight product is going to generate.

Rico is a contingency for damage control.

Rico's hidden message is that starting on 17 November flights will cost more but give you less.

That's why Rico's even on the plane in the safety demo. Cognitive dissonance reinforced from the TV, to the net, to the airport terminal, into the aircraft, and beyond. Rico is designed to make you feel unsettled about complaining.

Does Rico tell you that from 17 November the airline is doing away with free in-flight meals on many flights?

NO.

Does Rico tell you that on his new 777-300 that your seat will be smaller because an entire extra row is being squeezed in?

NO.

Does Rico tell you that when you buy a $5 food voucher at check in that you don't get any change for something costing less than $3 once you're on board?

NO.

Does Rico tell you that from 17 November Flight Attendants (on threat of disciplinary sanction) are only allowed to give children's packs to those families who paid the highest fares?

NO.

Does Rico make you feel safe when he features in the pre-flight safety video?

NO.

Will you still get a free meal and drink by choosing to fly Qantas or Emirates for the same fare?

YES.

Verbal rape and disinformation shouldn't be part of a marketing mix - especially a government owned business.

Air New Zealand...get back to basics.

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So glad their CEO is leaving. Maybe this kind of brand destruction will now be at an end.

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