There's one thing in common between the Hogwarts Castle, the lost city of Atlantis and the island of Eroda in that none of them exist. But then, you're unlikely to see any travel promotion for Hogwarts or Atlantis.
As for Eroda, well, the absence of a land mass destination isn't exactly stopping some adventurous marketers from doing the big tourism push.
3 Twitter Followers
A quick visit to Eroda's website doesn't even reveal where it can be found, just a map drawing of the island that resembles a dead leaf, bereft of familiar land masses surrounding it to even suggest location or scale. Additional information reveals that Eroda consists of four villages with their share of pubs and fish markets dotting a grassy landscape bordered by eye-catching cliffs. Attractions include its "famous" lighthouse, deep-sea diving school, movie theater, gift shop and even its own brewery.
Sounds idyllic enough for sure, but even in the absence of solid geographical facts, it's certainly attracted enough social media traffic, with at least 17,000 Twitter followers to date. Many of them reportedly claimed they booked a vacation there via social media. Oddly enough, the website contains no contact information whatsoever.
2 Fine Line
One theory floating around social media is that the whole Eroda scheme revolves around a forthcoming solo release by One Direction vocalist Harry Styles. Slated for release Dec. 13, the album, Fine Line, seems to be awash with clues linked to the fake island of Eroda. Astute observers claim the island's name spelled backwards reads Adore, which happens to be part of a song title on the release. That's further reinforced by Eroda's slogan, "Welcome to Eroda. We adore you," which as a standalone marketing pitch wouldn't otherwise make much sense.
Other potential tip-offs include references on the Edora website to cherries and watermelons, also mentioned on the release's song list. Then there's the Twitter account, which was launched in October, right around the same time Styles dropped the album's lead-off single "Lights Out."
1 Fake Ad
Granted, we're dealing with a lot of circumstantial scenarios, but the whole Eroda campaign is quite reminiscent of another fake marketing ploy back in 2004. Fans of the castaway suspense drama Lost might recall a television commercial for Oceanic Airlines, which might have convinced a few unsuspecting viewers, although most weren't fooled by the fake ad, which referred to the flight that crashed onto a mysterious Pacific island that kicked off the show.
Come to think of it, Oceanic might be the best way to visit Eroda.