VisitDenmark – the official marketing department of Denmark towards tourists – was trying out the concept of viral marketing.
The story line was a single mother who used Youtube to annouce a search for the father of her child. Like it was the case with Lonelygirl15 and the girl who wanted a blue car rather than a red one it was just an example of viral markting.
But the problem is what kind of message Denmark sends to the potential tourists. What kind of target group do they want to attract?
Clearly the target group must the youth going down to Sunny Beach or Ibiza. I find it kind of low because when we are talking Sunny Beach we are talking of a country trying to rebuild themselves after some 50 years of communist rules. There is nothing to see in this country beside the bottom of a bottle or willingly youth you can drink under the table and exploit. Their only chance is to get people so drunk so they cannot see how destroyed the country is.
Next the message broadcasted by VisitDenmark is so wrong. In Denmark teenagers don’t get pregnant like they do in the United States. Instead we are on the edge of being extinct because the average age of a Danish woman giving birth for the first time is about 29 years of age. We cannot even manage to reproduce ourselves and then they try to sell Denmark as a place where you can get in bed, produce a child and then leave without taking care of the offspring produced is as wrong as it can get.
So I am happy that they decided to erase the video. Not only would we disappoint the guests. Some would even risk getting hurt if they hit too hard on a woman and she decides to answer to what Danish woman would regard as sexual harassment. In Denmark women would use violence to defend their honor. We are not talking of Florida here like when one of our models was exposed of sexual harassment while flying on a Martinair Airplane and was punished for it. Women have human rights here.
However the removal leaves the question of how our strategy should be in the future when we are talking of selling experiences to visitors. Not a year ago we were known to be one of the last countries in Europe to offer freedom to smokers, but then we introduced a ban on smoking in larger restaurants. Now we are just like everybody else.
For youth visiting Denmark we have more sad news. The age limit for purchase of tobacco is now 18. Fortunately youth can still buy alcohol in shops, but I cannot set my finger on a single positive experience beside that, which we can offer to tourists considering Denmark.
I guess the obvious step is to shut VisitDenmark down and settle with marketing against Danes. I have to say that I am generally disappointed with the people visiting Denmark. They don’t bother to learn the Danish language and it is kind of insulting. I believe that we should expect as much of our guest as the French people expect from theirs. After all both countries have these odd marginalized languages they speak.
I hope that our politicians realize that we have nothing to offer potential tourist and save the money used to finance VisitDenmark today for other purposes.