{{B}}Text A{{/B}}
{{B}}Background Information{{/B}}
Marketing is defined by the American Marketing Association as the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large. The term developed from the original meaning which referred literally to going to market, as in shopping, or going to a market to buy or sell goods or services.
Marketing practice tends to be seen as a creative industry, which includes advertising, distribution and selling. It is also concerned with anticipating the customers' future needs and wants, which are often discovered through market research. Seen from a system's point of view, sales process engineering views marketing as a set of processes that are interconnected and interdependent with other functions, whose methods can be improved using a variety of relatively new approaches.
To carry out the functions of marketing, the marketers must develop a comprehensive plan or strategy covering the following major areas, i.e., product, price, place and promotion, usually summarized as "the 4 P's" of marketing.
{{B}}A Marketing Stunt Done Right{{/B}}
On April 1, 1996 a full page ad appeared in six major American newspapers(The Philadelphia Inquirer, New York Times, Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, Dallas Morning News, and USA Today)announcing that the fast food chain Taco Bell had purchased the Liberty Bell. The full text of the ad read:
Taco Bell Buys The Liberty Bell
In an effort to help the national debt, Taco Bell is pleased to announce that we have agreed to purchase the Liberty Bell, one of our country's most historic treasures. It will now be called the "Taco Liberty Bell" and will still be accessible to the American public for viewing. While some may find this controversial, we hope our move will prompt other corporations to take similar action to do their part to reduce the country's debt.

In a separate press release, Taco Bell explained that the Liberty Bell would divide its time between Philadelphia and the Taco Bell headquarters in Irvine. It compared the purchase to the adoption of highways by corporations. Taco Bell argued that it was simply "going one step further by purchasing one "of the country's greatest historic treasures." The company boasted, "Taco Bell's heritage and imagery have revolved around the symbolism of the bell. Now we've got the crown jewel of bells."
Taco Bell's announcement generated an enormous response. Thousands of worried citizens called both Taco Bell's headquarters and the National Park Service in Philadelphia to find out if the Bell had really been sold. Elaine Sevy, a Park Service spokeswoman, was quoted as saying, "We were shocked. We had no idea this was happening. We have just been getting hammered with phone calls from the public."
The Philadelphia branch of the National Park Service arranged a midmorning news conference to assure the public that the Bell had not been sold. "The Liberty Bell is safe. It's not for sale," a spokeswoman announced.
In fact, the Bell could not have been sold by the federal government, as the ad implied, because the federal government did not own the Bell. It was the property of the City of Philadelphia.
At noon on April 1st, Taco Bell issued a second press release in which they confessed to the hoax, describing it as "The Best Joke of the Day." The company also announced that it would donate $50 000 for the upkeep of the Liberty Bell.
Even the White House got in on the joke that same day when press secretary Mike Mercury told reporters that, as part of its ongoing privatization efforts "We'll be doing a series of these. Ford Motor Co. is joining today in an effort to refurbish the Lincoln Memorial. It will be the Lincoln Mercury Memorial."
Some of the people who called the Park Service or Taco Bell did not realize the announcement was a joke. However, there were many critics who did realize it was a joke, but nevertheless felt it was in bad taste.
National Park Service Director Roger Kennedy described the ad as being "as false as it is cheesy." The New York Daily News said it "fell flat as a dumbbell."
Law professor Ronald Collins questioned how far the advertising practices of corporations should be allowed to go: "They [Taco Bell] now have gotten themselves name recognition or association with a national symbol. Where do we draw the line? If this is merely being playful, you have to wonder if next time, someone might do the same thing with a crucifix."
Taco Bell spokesman Jonathan Blum offered this defense of the hoax: "For those who didn't get the joke and care about the bell, just think about how much more recognition we've given it in this one day. There's been a terrific response among people I talked to, and some of them even said, 'Hey, thanks for making me aware of how we need to take care of our monuments.'"
However, scholars have noted that there was nothing new about the Liberty Bell being used in advertising. Robey Callahan has written, "its image can be found in advertisements for everything from insurance to butter, cosmetics to beer, sports apparel to board games."
Pulling Off the Hoax
The hoax was dreamed up by a team at Taco Bell that included Jonathan Blum, the Vice President of Public Affairs.
In an interview with the Philadelphia Inquirer, Blum claimed that pulling it off was not difficult. He said that the team began fine-tuning the idea and putting the ad together in mid-March.
Fearing the hoax would be leaked, they instructed their ad agency, Paine & Associates, to send the ad to newspapers only two days before publication. Because Paine & Associates was a wellknown agency, this did not raise any red flags. Nor did the newspapers examine the ad once they received it.
A spokesman for the Inquirer said that if they had seen the ad "it probably would not have run."
Free Publicity
The CEO of Taco Bell(left)poses with an actor playing Benjamin Franklin next to a replica of the Liberty Bell.

Paine & Associates later boasted that the hoax earned Taco Bell millions of dollars of free publicity.
"More than 650 print outlets and 400 broadcast outlets covered the Taco Liberty Bell story, featuring mentions of the "Nothing Ordinary About It" ad campaign. More than 70 million Americans were exposed to the media event, through radio, print and television coverage, including NBC "Nightly News," "The Today Show," CBS "This Morning," CNN and USA Today. Additionally, more than 50 newspapers nationwide utilized a whimsical AP photo of the Taco Bell CEO next to a replica of the. Liberty Bell. Free publicity surrounding the Taco Liberty Bell story generated the equivalent of $25 million in advertising for Taco Bell."
According to Taco Bell's marketing department, their sales spiked upwards by over half a million dollars during the week of April 1st, compared to the week before.
填空题 I. Match the word with the appropriate meaning.
填空题 controversial
填空题 prompt
填空题 symbolism
填空题 enormous
填空题 confess
填空题 leak
判断题 II. True or False.Taco Bell purchased the Liberty Bell, one of USA's most historic treasures in 1996.
判断题 Taco Bell's announcement generated massive controversy.
判断题 The Liberty Bell was the property of the federal government.
判断题 The Liberty Bell was used in advertising for the first time by Taco Bell in 1996.
判断题 Taco Bell's sales increased largely because of the advertisement.
单选题 III. Multiple Choices.Why did Taco Bell announce to purchase the Liberty Bell?
单选题 After seeing the advertisement, thousands of citizens called the National Park Service in Philadelphia and the people work there were ______ .
单选题 Which of the following is not true according to the passage?
单选题 What can be inferred from the comments of White House press secretary Mike Mercury?
单选题 A spokesman for The Philadelphia Inquirer said that if they had seen the ad, ______ .
填空题 IV. Answer the questions. Does Taco Bell's advertising campaign seem successful to you? 19. Have you ever heard of marketing stunts that are similar to this? 20. Could you talk about your perception of the saying "this is no such thing as bad publicity"?