Brand Karma
Change Blindess

Down the Rabbit Hole

Rabbit hole 

[From here]

Last night I went down the rabbit hole.

Rabbit holes are what the entry points into ARGs are called [although the urban dictionary has some other, more colourful definitions] - a reference to Alice following the white rabbit into wonderland.

But I wasn't playing an ARG, at least not in the traditional sense - I was buying a t-shirt.

The Urban Rabbit Hole project took some of the tropes of ARGs and built them into a product - in fact they built a lot of marketing into the product itself:

Gaming behaviours and manufactured exclusivity: in order to buy the t-shirt you had to find an invitation code and enter it on the website.

Personalisation: The idea for the t-shirt is that you paint five red dots on a map of Manhattan, all of which represent some important place for you. 

Geotility: OK it's not really geotility exactly but an obsession with location, and specifically our own locations as shown by a dot on a map, is an inevitable consequence of GPS enabled handsets.

Create experiences and curate social spaces
: To buy the t-shirt you had to attend an event. It was theatrical - people in costumes hand you tubes of absinthe, you meet a bunch of people and then get drunk together with red paint. During the course of the event someone hands you a key and a note with clues on how to find the afterparty. 

[Somehow paint got on my face. And other people's faces. This was FUN.]

Create a story around your product: the whole thing becomes a story, itself an aggregation of other people's personal stories, which are being compiled into an anthology.

Stories tell themselves, people like to narrate, so they get passed on.

Like this.

Most of what I love about the t-shirt I bought is not, in fact, the t-shirt.

The product is primarily a souvenir: an invitation to others to tell a story.

The product is decompiled into a process.