More thoughts on #LRNY – it didn’t work

Having now had a closer look at the #LRNY tag, its clear that the thing hasn’t really worked.  The reason is that Land Rover have failed to notice that a successful conversation has two mandatories – an ability to listen and an ability to speak.  Land Rover is doing neither – and its paid tweeters are doing nothing more than say “wow- aren’t Land Rovers really nice, please look at this website”.

As a result the space is filled either with people like me talking only about the fact that the space exists, or, more latterly, people complaining about Land Rovers.  I can’t even see a twitter identity for a Land Rover person to respond in any way to what people are saying on the tag although a chap called Keith Rhodes seems to performing some official function.

Its a shame really because having generated all the attention this could have been an interesting initiative.  However, the exercise bears all the hallmarks of having been invented by a traditional media / advertising / digital agency who can see no further than simply trying to own a channel and place messages within it.

Lesson – don’t think Channel, think Content, Conversation, Community.  That’s what social media is all about (and it is also what most traditional agencies are institutionally incapable of either understanding or delivering).

UPDATE: I have looked back at the twitter stream to see how it all started a couple of weeks ago.  I few things struck me.  First – the proforma statement

Hey car fans, my background is sponsored by Land Rover! Watch the video from the NY Auto show l

looks rather sad when you see them all lined up together – so obvious – shame LR couldn’t have encouraged them to say something in their own words.  Second, it is clear than one of the paid-fors @powerwomenmag gets very upset that their background gets changed, but perhaps more disturbingly, the person who appears to be the key protagonist in all of this @keithrhodes states

2010 Land Rover first look video on YouTube. Video was created by a consumer who got into the reveal.

I looked at this and thought “in your dreams son”.  The idea that a ‘consumer’ got into the press reveal and was the person responsible for posting this video smells very fishy to me – especially when you check out the YouTube profile of said ‘consumer’.  A more plausible explanation to me was this was a piece of astroturfing.

Hmmm.  It gets worse.

See also update re further analysis


  1. Jack Smith

    You have done no research and have no grasp on what actually transpired. You’re a hack, wake-up and make some sense. No one reads this dump of a blog any way.

  2. richardstacy

    I may be a hack, and this blog may be a dump – but I am interested to know what actually transpired – specifically the claim that the video was posted to YouTube by a ‘consumer’ who happened to get into the reveal. If you could shed some light on this that would be most useful.

    • richardstacy

      Dear Mr Smith,

      You, on the other hand, appear to be an employee of the WPP group, owners of the agency responsible for the Land Rover campaign. Note: It is actually quite easy to trace the origination of comments by simply using the “whois” function that wordpress very kindly provide. Suggest you take more steps to cover you tracks in future.

  3. Grizzly Smith

    Two thoughts:

    1. I agree.

    2. I’d say “I hate to say I told you so, but…” but I don’t actually hate to say I told you so. But nobody asked me.

    Moral: You can learn to swim by being taught, or by nearly drowning.


    • richardstacy

      Jack – I am not a real techy in terms of tracing IP addresses etc, but if you click on “who is” in the comment notification you receive from wordpress this is what comes up re your comments.

      OrgName: WPP Group USA, Inc.
      OrgID: WGU
      Address: 125 Park Ave
      City: New York
      StateProv: NY
      PostalCode: 10017
      Country: US

      Happy for you to shed some light on this.

  4. Pingback: Three lessons from #LRNY « Richard Stacy @ Stacy Consulting
  5. Chris

    Yes, I think you are stumbling into an arena marketers don’t like to discuss – failures. I too went back and read all of the Tweets from the #LRNY campaign (someone I work with told me it was a success so I had to find out what the campaign really did) and all I could find were the paid Twitter users using the same or very similar Tweet postings that did not inspire additional conversation. Most of the non-paid discussion came from marketing people linking to the AdAge article and others complaining about how disingenuous this campaign is. Anyway, excellent blog post. Thanks for your Investigative Social Journalism. 🙂

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