So what’s all the fuss about? A messy new campaign for Krakow’s 750th b’day is drawing much criticism

A new campaign promoting the celebrations for Krakow?s 750th anniversary was launched on May 4.

As part of the campaign, the symbols of other cities — Warsaw?s Mermaid, Gdansk?s Neptune and Torun?s Copernicus — are being used to invite visitors to the celebrations. The heart of the festivities will take place from June 1-June 10.

The Program Board of Jubilee Celebrations for the event has recently described the promotional campaign as: ?a monstrosity presented at the very last minute.?
So what is all the fuss about?

Recently, the Program Board criticized its own activities and revealed that it made a poor investment of some 1.4 odd ?million zloty. Looking for a scapegoat, they decided to shift some of the blame onto AdFabrika FCB, an advertising agency responsible for promoting the event.

Many object to the campaign, stating that it only strengthens Krakow?s reputation as Europe?s favorite watering hole, where tourists, domestic and international alike, flee for a cheap good time.

Many locals are also upset by the disrespectful attitude that has been shown to the city?s nearly 1,000-year-old history. Little explanation is given by the campaign to draw attention to the fact that Krakow is celebrating the 750th anniversary of its relocation according to Magdeburg Law, and that the city is in fact much, much older.

Others are indignant about the authors of the campaign not using more worthy symbols for the event.

But if we take into account the Municipality?s prior marketing efforts, then its latest effort should surprise us with its openness and originality.

The marketing tactics used to promote Krakow as a host city for the Euro 2012 were shameful at best. The ads were packed with symbolic meaning, a guest spot for the Wawel dragon, and the Wisła football team scoring a goal during a match.

We have to remember, though, that an effective advertising campaign has to be controversial. So if we look at Krakow?s spot from a marketing perspective, it has been a success, stirring debate among the opinion-forming, cultural and conservative circles of the city. Perhaps, then, this campaign should be regarded as a small breakthrough?

For those who have yet to see the advertisement ? the whole fuss is over the manner in which the campaign invites us to participate in the celebrations.
The campaign?s catchphrase is, ?Krakow is celebrating. It is so hard to go back home.?

The spot features Neptune, Mermaid and Copernicus resting in the Main Square and informing us in their tired voices that it is high time to go home. Neptune?s trident is broken, and the Mermaid looks as if she has had a long night.
The dialogue is simple and literal and the possible interpretations are numerous: the characters are so terribly tired because of a hangover, or maybe they have been sightseeing too intensively, or maybe? The whole fun is coming up with a new interpretation.

Soon after the spot was broadcast for the first time, opinions that such a portrayal of the city is improper were everywhere.
Among those who defended the campaign were the event?s organizers and Internet bloggers.

The latter began voicing their support in large numbers at a time when it all started to seem that the campaign?s reception would be nothing but negative.
The city?s official web site, www.krakow.pl, includes many approving opinions, like: ?It?s cool, isn?t it? I liked it even more when I realized that these were the authorities of the city and not some company producing clothes for teenagers that came up with this idea. We should appreciate it. After all, officials with a sense of humor are not that common.

What?s more, the spot was made very professionally, and that doesn?t happen too often as well?.? (Quoted from: www.pardon.pl)
In a situation where it is difficult to stick one?s head out and have an opinion differing from the official, critical and traditionalistic standpoint, the Internet proves its opinion-forming capacity.

The campaign will comprise 1,400 billboards in selected cities throughout Poland during the celebrations. From May 15 until June 15, 600 small billboards and 4,000 B1-format posters will be put up all over the city.

In a situation where it is difficult to stick one?s head out and have an opinion differing from the official, critical and traditionalistic standpoint, the Internet proves its opinion-forming capacity.

The campaign will comprise 1,400 billboards in selected cities throughout Poland during the celebrations. From May 15 until June 15, 600 small billboards and 4,000 B1-format posters will be put up all over the city.Apart from these, a large format advertisement is going to be hung on the wall of the Municipal building, and a tram plastered with the ad will run all over the city.The jubilee celebrations will also be promoted in selected newspapers. The advertisement will be shown in MULTIKONO cinemas in Krakow, Warsaw, Poznan, Gdansk, Szczecin and Wroclaw.
                                                                                                                            
 
 

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