I got my first Matter Box today. I’d forgotten about it so it was a nice suprise, especially as noone gets good post – let alone a box full of fun free stuff that also lets me think about marketing. Treats.
Here’s how they describe it:
“In an increasingly virtual world, we’re beginning to appreciate the value of real things. Matter is a box full of interesting stuff–a way for companies to talk to people by giving them things.
Matter is a refreshing interlude to the fast-moving blur of modern media. It’s stuff you can read, play with, or try at your leisure. But because Matter is carefully created it’s also a thoroughly modern concept–it’s advertising you’ll want to keep.”
Obviously as a social media PR I’m not a fan of anything tangible or sent by post, but I kind of like this idea because as they describe it, it fits in with one of my favourite marketing trends – if your marketing is good enough your audience will consciously value it. They’ll head to YouTube, rewatch your ad and tell people about it – which is amazing and I’ve talked about it before.
So I signed up, a few months ago, and got my first box today. It contained:
- Cadbury Cranberry & Granola Bar – Very nice, never would have tried it otherwise – job done
- BBC Audio Comedy sampler – Clips from Mitchell & Webb et al, and a plug to connect on Facebook. It’ll go on the iPhone this week for some embarassing ‘laughing on public transport’ activity
- Original Source Orange Oil & Ginger hair and body wash – I’m hoping this will be Christmassy. I used to buy Original Source and then stopped so this may switch me back
- LOVEFiLM ‘Don’t watch dirty movies’ DVD cleaning cloth plus a month’s free movies - Made me giggle and will go to my film buff little sister
- O2 sim card pack - I’m on O2 already so one for my little brother
- Pimm’s, Baileys, Bell’s & Gordon’s winter drinks pack - Cocktail recipes and a ‘roaring fire’ DVD – definitely a keeper, it’ll make friends and family laugh and ask about it, if it’s on when they come round
- Harper Collins ‘Lords of the Bow’ sampler – I’m more of a newspaper than a book reader but I’ll find a home for it
Matter ask people to tell them what they think via onsite forms which is a little clunky, and admit on their blog that forums need to be in place soon. But even with official forums people will discuss it where they want to – I spotted a few conversation so I’m sure Matter have good tracking in place. It’s cool public discussion is being so actively invited, and whilst I’m sure it will be positive, it’s indicative of how much braver brands are being – it reminded me of the recent Crowd Surfing post about Orange embracing the ‘orangeproblems.co.uk forum’.
All in all, I still like the idea. Partly as a marketer, because I’m keen to see what brands get involved and how much cleverer the gifts get. And also for the same reasons as a consumer, there’s the potential to make the arrival of the Matter Box a proper event, and the contents really exciting.