Car rental firm aims to turn duped viewers into customers using fake skiing invention

Car rental company Hertz is taking an oblique approach to promoting its ski deals through an online hoax.

YouTube video shows a British winter sports enthusiast who claims to have invented SkiBrogues – a stylish leather version of the classic ski boot, except one that contains a retractable, spring-loaded ski in the sole.

The video directs people to a microsite that details how SkiBrogues were created in order to allow people to get on and off the piste quicker and to free up space in cars. Although three styles of the boot are offered for sale at prices ranging from £395 ($629) to £995 ($1584), each is apparently out of stock. A banner ad on the right-hand side of the single-age site displays Hertz’s weekly car hire rates for skiing resorts in Europe and the US.

Results: In the seven days since the SkiBrogues video has been uploaded to YouTube, it’s attracted 14,000 views.

Why I’m curious:

Considering that the CTR of a typical banner ad is around 1 percent in the best case scenario, Hertz is trying something new by creating content to increase engagement.

I would love to see the results for this as from my point of view this exercise is pointless. They would have been better off integrating the brand with the content so the users would have been more keen to view the offers.


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