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How X-kom.pl promoted left-handed mouse on PornHub and went crazy viral (5 min read)

X-kom.pl – one of the leading electronics retailers in Poland. The company owns a chain of stores across the country and an e-commerce platform. X-kom has experienced stable growth in the electronics market, but in order to attract customers, the company decided to implement an unusual marketing strategy involving ads on Porn Hub.

?Strategy & Tools

Highlights 


  • 2002 – X-kom opens its first store in Częstochowa, Poland 
  • 2011 – X-kom’s growth is reflected by its partnership with a local football club, Raków Częstochowa. X-kom has been the team’s main sponsor ever since.
  • October 24, 2018 – X-kom becomes the first Polish company to launch an advertising campaign on Pornhub.com

The right pretext

X-kom managed to find a perfect pretended reason for advertising on Pornhub.com. The company’s press release stated that before launching the social campaign, they were looking for a place where one can find a lot of left-handed users. Research and surveys pointed the marketing team towards Pornhub. The ads, which were focusing on selling a computer mouse, included taglines such as: “Is your right hand busy?” or “Why aren’t you using a mouse for left-handed people?”. In this way, X-kom managed to find a reason to stay relevant in this relatively new advertising space of a porn site.

Social justice element

To add a tongue-in-cheek element, X-kom spokesperson stated that their ads were in fact a social campaign against the discrimination of left-handed people. This cheeky justification for the tech retailer to be present on a porn site generated more media interest. The media reaction was generally positive, and the tech company received praise for being brave and for trying new marketing outlets.

Target audience

X-kom ads on Pornhub.com appeared next to porn content that used specific tags, such as #geek, #gamer, #fortnite or #thewitcher. In this way, X-kom made sure that even on a porn site, they were targeting gaming enthusiasts who might actually be interested in new computer hardware and accessories. A special landing page was created to showcase the campaign as well as actual devices for left-handed people.

Being the first

The final interesting aspect of the campaign, which ran only for a few days (until the end of October 2018) was that X-kom was apparently the first Polish company to advertise on Pornhub. The porn site is known for linking to other pornography content, but this was a breakthrough marketing project, and it received a lot of well-deserved media coverage and Internet attention, e.g. on wykop.pl, a Polish social network similar to reddit.com or digg.com.

?Psychology

Bizarreness Effect - Element of surprise

Pornhub's users did not expect computer mouse ads on the porn site, neither were they used to seeing a seemingly social justice campaign for left-handed people. Although the social element quickly proved to be a humorous take on implied masturbation, people viewing the ad still might have been taken off guard.

Attention ratio

X-kom ads on porn sites were relatively simple and did not distract the users from other content. The black banners matched the site’s background, but the humorous message and a discreet CTA were just the right amounts of information that could interest its viewer.

Contrast principle

X-kom mouse ads were unusual for Polish Pornhub users. When contrasted with other ads on the website, they were a refreshing element. While users could buy their electronics from another retailer, X-kom forced itself into their subconsciousness as being the brave one that is not afraid of controversial and humorous techniques.

Framing effect

X-kom used positive framing for their ad. Pornhub's users could have felt understood and their presence on a porn site was normalized. Porn sites can be seen as a source of specific pleasure, and X-kom acknowledged that and positioned itself right in the middle of this peculiar environment without stigmatizing porn.

Social cognition

X-kom created relatable advertising banners that were easy to connect with and created a sense of familiarity for computer users, who were in fact possibly using a mouse while browsing the internet.

?Window of Opportunity

X-kom campaign of 2018 proved that going out of the comfort zone and the right use of controversy can generate very positive feedback, both from the media and Internet users. X-kom managed to overcome stereotypes and targeted the audience that was overlooked by other advertisers. The whole campaign, although short-lived (only a week), made its mark in Polish marketing industry.

It didn’t have to get results directly on Pornhub, but the amount of media coverage was definitely worth it.

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