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Passing the Buck

NBC made money this month a little differently than usual. It printed 5,000 faux $100 bills featuring The Donald instead of The Benjamin to generate “>ad money to a whole new level. To promote next week’s miniseries Traffic, it circulated 50,000 $1 bills featuring a small round sticker next to Washington’s noble mug indicating the show’s date and time. The series, inspired by the Oscar-winning movie, explores the world of drug-trafficking and money-laundering, so the network thought that using money was appropriate. It was also an intriguing twist on viral marketing. Imagine how many times the bills have changed hands since they came out a couple of weeks ago in Los Angeles and New York.

The network was careful to use removable stickers to avoid defacing the bills (and breaking the law). But does turning dollars into ad flyers cross the line or represent the ultimate in shrewd marketing?

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