I was trying to translate in my mind right before I wrote to an English friend about the tricks that companies use to draw attention to their products and to drive sales. That's when the word gimmick sprang to mind. I must admit I've never used it before in discourse, and all my faint knowledge of the word is based on a few reading encounters that occurred many years ago. So, I started writing:
We have this ridiculous marketing gimmick about a soap bar that can kill 99.9 % of bacteria.
I was unsure gimmick was the right word since I hadn't used it before, so I looked it up in a dictionary and ran a google search on the phrase marketing gimmicks. I was happy to know that the phrase that popped out of no where in my head was correct and common.
Surprisingly enough, and right before I sent the message, the word ploy, which I've never used before either, and which was not part of the definitions or synonyms of gimmick, popped out of nowhere in my head. I applied the same verification techniques only to find out marketing ploys was just as good, but I can't tell if they are exactly interchangeable in this context or if there's any subtle difference.