What do you get when you combine an American documentary filmmaker, an eccentric Bavarian town, a BMW, a colossal ramp and that special brand of German optimism?
If you’ve missed the video that’s been floating around YouTube and beyond for the past few months, you might take some time out of your day to enjoy Rampenfest. Hey, it’s Friday. Or as they say in Bavaria: Es ist Freitag! (If you have seen the video and already know the backstory, feel free to skip to the “spoiler alert” part of this post…)
And what documentary film about a giant ramp with cows as extras would be complete without a CafePress shop? Yes, the fine people of Oberpfaffelbachen have seen fit to commemorate their historic achievement with a Rampenfest shop. (Regrettably, we do not sell the actual pretzels.)
Yes, it’s really a spoiler alert. So stop reading if you want to maintain your suspension of disbelief and believe on this fine Friday that, somewhere in the world, there’s a pot of gold under that rainbow and a spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down.
Here’s the deal: this documentary is actually a clever and extremely well-executed marketing campaign by BMW. The Wall Street Journal covered the story this week, noting that BMW managed to pull off what other buzzmarketing campaigns haven’t: consumer interest without backlash (or a $2M fine).