‘Visit Eroda’: Harry Styles duped everyone with this clever ‘tourism’ ad

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If you haven’t heard this place called Eroda, you’re in for a treat.

It’s a country shaped like a frown, located between the UK and Ireland. It has a lot of odd superstitions and beliefs– and there’s no land quite like it because it doesn’t exist.

‘Visit Eroda’

Last November, a couple of Twitter users started buzzing about an ad directing to this non-existent European country.

 

The ad and the thread left a lot of people confused and speculating whether the ads and website were for a student project or for an Alternate Reality Game (ARG).

Things then became quite clear when Eroda’s Twitter account started following Harry Styles, about the same time the MV trailer for his new single Adore You dropped.

‘Adore You’

Turns out Eroda is Adore (You) spelled backwards, which is Harry Styles’ second single of his sophomore album, Fine Line, dropping this Friday.

 

The trailer centers on Styles, being the only happy person in the quaint fishing Isle of Eroda, who gradually loses his smile after being repeatedly ignored by his fellow inhabitants.

One of the final lines from the trailer sets the tone of the upcoming music video: ‘He had lost his smile, and without it the world grew darker, wind colder, and the ocean more violent.’ 

 

Keeping them Talking

For someone who rarely gives out interviews, this was a really clever way for Harry  to have people talk about his upcoming album.

Visit Eroda‘ brochures were given out in New York, the trailer played in certain cinemas, and its Twitter account has been interacting with fans as if it was a real tourist destination.

A similar advertising technique was adopted by Halsey, for the release of her first album, Badlands back in 2015.

 

Badlands and Eroda could spark the beginning of ad campaigns where an album or a project’s entire mood is interpreted into a grandiose way. This is comparable to Taylor Swift’s love for placing Easter eggs in her interviews, and music videos, but in a much larger scale.

By creating interest in the places, the more people talk about it, the more they’re curious to find out what the deal is about.

 

In essence, even if the locations aren’t real, these fictional places are the ideas of the artist brought to life.

It’s a world the artists have created and began in their minds, but once they share it with their fans, it becomes theirs. The fans make it their own and usually expand that world into something bigger.