Besides just receiving bottles, jars, pots and tubes of lotions, creams, powders and lipsticks that seem to arrive at my desk day after day, I do receive lots of interesting "knick knacks" and "gifts" that come by way as an invitation to attend a press launch as as part of a press kit. The cynics would consider these gifts "bribes". I prefer to think of them as creative ideas to make a product launch much more interesting and alive - especially when we are receiving invitations and press kits every 5 minutes (that makes me feel so important)! The challenge here however, is for them (PRs and brand people) to be as creative as possible to get our attention in the midst of a gazillion invites, letters, press kits, etc.
While some do it the traditional way; that is, through FOOD (I'm sure you know how the CLEO girls love to eat by now), others do it via a fruit basket (you guessed right - probably has an ingredient with the fruit in it), a desert plant (rare one), jewellery (for its colour/design inspiration), Zen garden (to help destress us along with that jar of cream), even fishes (can't really remember why other than its aquatic association perhaps).
One of the most memorable events yet was the recent invitation to watch Gwen Stefani live in concert and above all, I had a VIP seat!
All thanks to Luxasia - Singapore's largest distributor for most of the fragrances out there in the market - who'll soon be launching Lamb by Gwen's first fragrance. Only sad thing is that we didn’t get to meet her despite a request put through for her to pop into the VIP lounge to say “hello” to the media. However, her manager said that Gwen would not be doing any publicity stuff when she’s on tour. Nonetheless, I was happy to boogie in my 2.5” heels for 90 minutes.
Another interesting press kit I got was this DIY musical box featuring a miniature Keira Knightley and Chanel Coco Mademoiselle fragrance bottle swirling and dancing around magically whenever you open the box – it was magical. I have to admit, the press pack was really charming – says a lot about the classiness of the scent and the brand.
The other day, a few of us received this huge cake box – inside was a nice big hat. It was an invitation to a L’Oreal event which had something to do with UV protection. You get the idea… however, how many of us would dare go out dressed the way we usually do wearing a big pretty hat like that? I tried it on for size in the office - definitely a snapshot moment. Novel idea nonetheless.
BTW, I will probably be needing those sunnies even more now. I had a great fall this morning in the MRT and wham-bam I was flat on the floor and my face hit the metal pole... but NOBODY came forward to help me up - not even the guy who was right behind me! Everyone was just rooted to their seats. I was disgusted by the people around me and too traumatised and hurt to feel embarrassment. I just can't believe how "heartless" some Singaporeans are. I'm sure there are many more of such incidents where nobody came forward to help. Seriously, how hard is it to show care and concern for others? Have we forgotten what it is to be a courteous and caring citizen?