Using Facebook to advertise isn’t new, but Reyka Vodka has found a new way to push the marketing capabilities on the social media site one step further. Using Facebook Live, the company set out to wish every single Icelandic resident Gleðilega hátíð, or “Happy holidays.”
Although Iceland isn’t a huge country, it’s still home to over 320,000 residents. Fortunately for Frikki, the lucky man tasked with the job, the list of names was narrowed down thanks to the campaign creators over at Red Tettemer O’Connell + Partners.
“Although there are over 320,000 people living in Iceland, the Icelandic Naming Committee has listed just 4,512 approved Icelandic names,” Frikki says. “I will now read each name, wishing Gleðilega hátíð to each Icelander. Oh, and because Reyka is a vodka, these wishes are only for those of legal drinking age. So if I call your name and you are under 21, I am not talking to you.”
You can watch him start his difficult task here.
If you’re wondering about the “approved names” bit, here’s how it works: Foreigners are allowed to keep the names they have already been given, but native-born Icelanders are not permitted to have names that don’t comply with the Icelandic Naming Committee’s list.
This may seem a bit strange, but the Naming Committee exists because they are the ones who decide whether or not new names are a good fit with the country’s language and culture. If a native-born Icelander wants a name not featured on the list, they must submit it for approval. Factors that are considered when analyzing new names is whether they are compatible with Icelandic tradition and grammar, the possibility that they could case the bearer any type of humiliation, whether the name correlates to the bearer’s sex (with some exceptions), and whether it only contains letters from the Icelandic alphabet.
Watch Frikki finish wishing more Icelanders happy holidays here where you can see him get miffed by a waving stuffed puffing. “OK. These things are flying rats,” he grumbles. “I know you guys think they’re cute, but they’re not. They’re delicious, yes—but cute, no. Annoying. Terrible. They taste very good with vodka, actually, now that I think about it. Maybe I’ll have some later.”
As you watch the videos, you can see Frikki slowly grow a bit crazy, easing his hysteria with shots of Reyka as he trudges through the list. Toward the end of the whole ordeal, men with Viking helmets and a girl in a swan dress come barging in to interrupt him. When Frikki finally arrives to the end of his list, he visibly relaxes and finishes off with a fond farewell.
“Reyka has now wished everyone a happy holiday. I will now be enjoying a little holiday cheer of my own, if you don’t mind,” he says. And just when he thinks it’s done, the phone rings with more name requests. “I never agreed to this!” he bellows. “I’m not doing this. It’s been a pleasure. Goodbye.”
A pretty genius way to use Facebook Live for the holidays.