Microsoft sent out some First Aid kits as per a marketing plan to spread awareness about the newly launched Internet Explorer 8 beta web browser. The whole idea was to promote the new and popular feature of IE8 beta called Web Slices. The first aid kit was a humorous take to fix injuries while slicing the web without IE8.
Gizmodo guys were one of the few people who got this kit, titled “Precautionary End-User Irresponsible Internet Slicing Emergency Accident Kit“. Packed inside were scissors and bandaging equipment, and it carried a warning that “slicing the web without IE 8 can be hazardous“.
Web Slices is a new feature of IE8 that lets you keep up with frequently updated sites directly from the Favorites Bar. If a Web Slice is available on a page, a green Web Slices icon will appear in the upper-right hand corner of the browser. When new information becomes available, the Web Slice will become highlighted. When you click on the Web Slice in the Favorites Bar, it previews relevant information. Clicking on the preview takes you directly to the site for more information.
Such gifts and gimmicks really have a viral impact on marketing efforts. Send out something funny to a blogger, and the blogosphere will buzz about it. The bigger the blogger, more the buzz. I bet now everyone knows what web slices are and you are eager to try it.