If you pay any attention at all to social media or the news, more than likely you have heard of people finding random painted rocks throughout their city. Maybe you have even found a painted rock yourself. How we approach life, treat other people and what we deem as important seems to change with every generation. Today more than ever we see people trying to make a positive impact wherever they can.

For a while, and still yet, “pay it forward” has been a popular and growing trend. To some its something as simple as paying for a coffee or meal for an unsuspecting stranger. To others its donating to a good cause in their name. The goal of these painted rocks is to brighten someones day. Anyone can participate by simply painting a rock and leaving it in a public spot for a total stranger to find.

However, what happens when something that was intended to spread kindness turns in to a business proposition or marketing scheme? We have become so competitive and desperate to reach markets and grow our businesses that it seems with every good thing that is done, there is someone out there trying to use it for personal gain instead of just something that is good for humanity.

Recently, a member of the Simpatico team saw a rock posted on social media that had an advertisement painted on it instead of words or images of inspiration. As someone who works in the marketing field, this seemed like a genius guerrilla marketing tactic. Guerrilla marketing is a way for companies to advertise to and reach their markets in unconventional ways. Using the painted rocks was smart and creative. However, as someone who supports doing something good for humanity for no personal gain, this really crosses the line of using something done for the greater good for personal gain.

We would love to hear your take on the situation! Is using painted rocks for personal or business gain genius and creative or does it cross the line of morality? Sound off in the comments or send us a message!