DHL Trolls Competitors with Clever Stunt (Update)

By Erik Oster 

We’re not sure who is behind this one, but DHL pulled a clever stunt and, in lieu of a traditional advertising campaign, had their competitors advertise for them (if the above video is to be believed).

To accomplish this they taped the packages with thermoactive foil and cooled them to below the freezing point. So competing companies like UPS and TNT picked up what appeared to be a black package, but when they went to deliver it (to carefully selected, not so easy to find locations) the box had transformed to reveal the message, “DHL Is Faster.” So employees of competing companies were walking around the city, advertising DHL’s services for free. Assuming this isn’t a hoax, it has to be one of the more clever marketing stunts in recent memory. Video of the stunt, appropriately titled “Trojan Mailing,” has been gaining a good deal of attention on YouTube. It’s already gained over 500,000 views since being added on Wednesday. I think it’s fair to call DHL’s tactic a resounding success.

Update: “This was not something that was initiated by DHL,” a rep for the company told Consumerist in an e-mail. “The video was created by an external agency for their own internal competition. We were aware in advance of the intention to use it for this purpose. We were not aware of any plans to share it externally.” No word yet on which agency was involved.