This week I read an article in AdAge about how Febreze is veering away from its traditional target of soccer moms, and branching out to college co-eds. Because let's face it - college life smells like crap. It really does. The campaign's anchor site WhatStinks.com is hosted within Facebook and features a photo contest, a news feed of "smelly" stories, an online game called Dank, links to the Campus Comedy tour, etc. etc. etc.
So far, the page has 921 friends which is nothing to scoff at - and I find it hilarious that many of the 10 most recent comments are about how Febreze is great to cover up the smell of pot (which has probably been the #1 smell you want to eradicate quickly in college since 1960). As one kid from Tennessee writes on The Wall, "Thank you, Febreze, for making it possible to get high in dorm rooms." Probably not the discussion that Febreze was hoping for, but it gives a page that could be seen as relatively cheesy an authentic ring - kudos to Febreze for not freaking out and deleting those posts. (In other news, I'll bet a "Pot Smokers for Febreze" group would really have some viral legs!)
In closing I would like to say that I think Febreze has a lot of virtues - however, my own most memorable experience with the product revolves around something it does NOT do - which is eliminate mold. Back when I lived in the North End of Boston, we had just about the shadiest landlady every known to man. After weeks of complaining about water damage to our roof, it just gave in one day and we had a full on flood down our walls at 1am on a December night. In the days that followed she patched up the roof, but unfortunately my roommate Alicia's closet took a direct hit and she was having serious mold issues. Being allergic to mold she alerted our landlady to the fact that we needed to have her carpet steam cleaned. Alicia came home one afternoon a few days later in the middle of the day to find some DUDE in SWEATPANTS Febrezing our apartment. When asked what the FUCK he was doing he replied, "Joanne thold me yuz guyz were having prablems wih some smell, so I've bheen fabreezin every day." Alicia was NOT pleased. Our carpet was steam cleaned the next day.