Brand Partnerships…. For the Throne

While social media had a good laugh about the coffee cup goof-up in the latest episode of game of thrones, few are aware that Starbucks received publicity worth more than 2 billion dollars without investing a single penny. This coffee giant sure lucked out, because the cup that started it all wasn’t even a Starbucks cup to begin with, it simply looked like one. Thanks to people’s perceptions and the memes on social media, Starbucks received more than 10000 mentions on the internet, TV and radio, which would have otherwise cost a staggering amount of money. This got us thinking about the brands that are in paid partnership with this TV show, and what strategies they have employed to promote Game of Thrones while bringing in the big bucks for themselves. A few of the most innovative and buzzworthy brand partnerships are listed below:
Shake shack: This popular burger chain launched two new items, a spicy Dracarys Burger and a Dragon Glass shake. These items are available in the Madison Square Park Shake Shack in NYC. To be able to order these items, you need to speak Valyrian, a fictional language spoken by the characters of Game of Thrones. In case you are dying to try the burger, but you are not confident about your Valyrian grammar, they have a guide ready for you. Way to increase engagement and revenue, Shake Shack!
Oreo: This cookie brand, which is a household name, released a limited-edition pack of Game of Thrones-themed cookies, embossed to represent the four Great Houses of Westeros and the White Walkers. They did the entire theme video of Game of Thrones, but with Oreo cookies. This video went on to become a massive hit on YouTube and proved that all you need is a great idea to get great publicity.
Urban Decay: This makeup brand is not new to the industry thanks to its much raved about products. However, they revamped their brand presence completely with their launch of new the Game of Thrones range.  Their eyeshadow set with a pop-up iron throne and shade names like “Lannister Red,” “Winter is Here” and “White Walker.”, are a collector’s item. A highlighting palette called “Queen of Dragons” has been embossed with the shape of dragon eggs; while lip/cheek stain, eyeliner, lipstick and make-up brushes have been made to look like Jon Snow’s Longclaw sword and Arya Stark’s Needle sword. For all the Game of Thornes geeks who also happen to be makeup enthusiasts, this is a dream come true. We totally see this campaign taking Urban Decay’s revenues to a whole another level.
American Red Cross: In our opinion, this was the most impactful brand partnership of all. The American Red Cross held an experiential marketing campaign that reinforced the “bleed for the throne” theme for a good cause. Guests were invited into a large, decorated space, where they experienced next level recreations of the key moments from the show using audio, visual and physical interactions from the point of view of the lead characters. There was also a campaign outside where they could donate blood for the Red Cross.
While some of these brand partnerships translated into huge publicity, some made great revenue and yet others like the Red Cross made great impact, all while generating hype for the final season of the mammoth TV show. It is always fascinating to observe these trends, and we hope you had as much fun reading about these as we had while putting together this list for you!

No comments