There's a lot of people upset today because they didn't get to fight a random stranger on Rumblr

Nope. Picture: 20th Century Fox

Today’s not news – Rumblr isn’t real.

Today’s news – thousands of humans hoped it was, and were eagerly squaring up this morning to fight a random stranger they met on the internet.

Yes, it was another marketing exercise/stunt/promo, whichever spin you prefer to put on it. Here’s what you saw this morning if you signed up for a random barney:

Its creators, Standford Uni computer science student Jack Kim and Baruch College business grad Matt Henderson, would like it to be seen as “an opportunity to showcase our branding skills”.

Except just about everyone who spread the word about the “Tinder for fighting” app – well, a sizeable chunk of them at least – knew this was coming. The hook that saw the pair get traction was that just about everyone also still held a tiny bit of hope in their hearts that it wasn’t going to be anything to do with branding skills.

And it was funny. And if it’s funny, it’s worthwhile. So there’s that.

But here’s the thing about Rumblr and “marketing”:

The only real success Kim and Henderson can claim is they managed to pick a (very obvious) attention-grabber.

That’s great for you and your client as long as while you’re heading toward “launch”, you’re not forced to lie about whether your product is real or not.

If that happens, you’ve been, well, rumbled and it’s probably time to go back to the drawing board and showcase your skills by finding something a little less obvious, and making it a whole lot more obvious.

The best marketers sell things people didn’t know they wanted to buy.

Still, there’s a couple of wins here for everyone:

  • Kim and Henderson will look at their numbers, and yes, they can be justifiably proud of them and convince themselves it doesn’t matter that everyone knew Rumblr was going to turn out to be a fake.
  • The rest us of learned that an alarming number of random people are ready to fight other random people. More than 300,000 signed on to Rumblr hoping they could swipe right for a fight.
  • And finally, we get to leave you with this – until the next time, everybody “un-rumble!”:

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