If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, functional parody is the stuff of post-media meta PR. What is functional parody? It’s when you poke fun by building something that actually works. A great example is the fax function Facebook built specifically to punk TechCrunch.
With the launch of Regretsy.com, hipster craft marketplace Etsy gets a love bump through the highlighting of truly awful and disturbing creations among a sea of beautifully photographed craft goods.
What’s incredible about Regretsy’s prairie dog foot necklace ($22), corn poo soap ($5), and catnip fetus toy ($6) is the listings redirect to actual Etsy stores. The foot, and “unicorn” taxidermy (pictured above) are found in the gruesome Dead Things category.
The four year-old Etsy broke out this year with an avalanche of mainstream publicity–most tied to the need for people to make extra cash during the recession–including GMA, Today Show, Rachael Ray, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, NPR and many others. Gross sales are way up to $100 million this year, with the holiday season still to come.
No PR firm needed. According to Etsy’s Adam Brown, all PR is crafted internally.
Regretsy.com is registered to something called Idiot Savant Productions. I wish Etsy was behind it–that would be award-winning strategy.