We finally discover that the blacked out silhouette and disguised voice of “JP” is our very own SEO Wizard of Moz, Rand Fishkin!
When I found out that “JP” was Rand, it was hard enough for me to keep it a secret. I can’t imagine what Rand had to go through!
If you’ve been stuck under a rock at the bottom of the Pacific for the past couple of months, here is the quick rundown:
A guy who calls himself J.P. wants to propose to his longtime girlfriend during the big game (and wants to keep it a secret). At first he put out the online call to get donations, and raised $75,000. Then he realized it might take a little longer to raise the $2 million+ for a 2007 Superbowl ad (which were close to being sold out anyway). So – he has decided to proceed by getting the sponsorship attention of an existing Superbowl advertiser.
Unfortunately, the advertisers fell through and CBS failed to air the spot independantly… so the proposal did not go down during the Super Bowl, as planned. Instead, Rand’s mom gifted a $3000 commercial spot during Mystery Guest‘s favorite show – Veronica Mars.
Without further ado:
And Geraldine’s response:
What a great couple. They are my new idols. Too bad she didn’t puke… that would’ve made for good TV.
Even though I had nothing to do with it, I do feel bad that the spot didn’t run during the Super Bowl. Though, on a much smaller scale, I know I’ve had my share of disappointments in projects. For Rand and Joe Morin to put so much work into something this fun and exciting, it must be a bit disheartening for it to not turn out as originally planned.
I honestly don’t see why the spot didn’t air during the Super Bowl. There was so much buzz going around that it would have inevitably been a success all around.
I’ve been hearing a lot of drivel from naysayers the past few days. Chatting with Joe, it was inevitable for such a large undertaking to pick up some criticism along the way. I’m sure there will be plenty more of it coming, but it’s just sad to see it directed at Rand, who is so caring and helpful to even those that he does not know.
Nonetheless, I am glad that everything worked out in the end and I have no doubt that it was a wonderful experience for all involved.
There are some great tidbits in this SeattlePI article:
–“Veronica Mars” cast members got win of Fishkin’s proposal plans, too. Fishkin said he expected to get a congratulatory call from a few cast members around 10 p.m. Tuesday. Morin also said Kristen Bell found out about it, and requested the couple’s address. (Expect goodies in the mail, kids!) One of the “Veronica Mars” writers plans on embedding ifilm of the proposal and response into the show’s official blog.
–How he did it: Fishkin resorted to extremely clandestine behavior to make sure Geraldine didn’t have a clue of what was going on. When he’d blog or maintain the site, he’d use a different browser, one the savvy Geraldine — she works at Cranium, after all — didn’t even know existed. “I used Opera, which really sucks for e-mail. And I’d clear the history every time I logged out.
–He fielded media related calls at work. Since he and his mother Gillian co-own seomoz.org, he could come up with all sorts of excuses as to why he had to rush out to be at the office at odd and sometimes ungodly hours. His mother jokingly said to him, “If she doesn’t think you’re having an affair by now, you’re nuts.”
–His plan if DeRuiter headed for the bathroom when the proposal aired: “I’ll just use the pause button. We have one of those Comcast (DVRs). Thank god for that little device.”
–Morin’s take on the experience: “I wouldn’t wish what I’ve been through in the last 30 days on anybody! It’s been good news, bad news, good news, bad news…daily!”
–On the other hand: “When she finds out what lengths he’s gone to, I mean, wow. All this planning!” Ten people around the country put their lives on hold to work on this behind the scenes on it, he added, and none of them are getting paid.
But he believes Fishkin “really is one of those guys that you’d go out on a limb for. He’s really generous and giving of himself. And I wouldn’t think twice about doing it again.”
Congratulations and all the best to Rand and Geraldine!!!