You only have to wait 10 more days until you can Elf Yourself for the 2008 holiday season. The OfficeMax campaign is probably the most viral online effort ever. And why not? People love seeing themselves and Elf Yourself lets you see yourself and others in a short, entertaining Web dance-o-mercial. My favorite last year was when my sister put all of her pets, cockatoo included, into the mix.
Of course OfficeMax isn’t the only one doing this. Time Warner Cable just launched Fame Star, where you can create your own trashy Hollywood rags to riches to rags story online. I don’t know why it’s so funny seeing yourself with weird hair, but there it is. This one is really mixes it up, as it keeps reusing your picture in different places. Well done, Time Warner.
I have to admit, though, that my favorites are on JibJab. While you have to pay for them, last year they let you send one on Valentine’s Day for free. It was, without a doubt, the best virtual strip-o-gram my wife’s every received, judging by how many times she looked at it, and how much she laughed at it.
On the weirder side is the Baby Maker at VW’s Routan Boom. I didn’t get it. It didn’t do much, nor could I adjust anything. Maybe it’s the cross-dresser in me, but if it doesn’t make a movie, like the previous examples, I’d rather play around with something crazy like you find on SevenTeen.com.
But from a branding stand point, if you can make a person’s day more enjoyable, especially in tough times like the next few months, you should come out ahead.