HBO’s award-winning series “True Blood” continues to make headlines for its ingenious multi-channel advertising campaigns. HBO’s marketing team and creative agency Definition have released a Facebook application allowing “True Blood” fans to be featured in an episode of the series. Named “Immortalize yourself”, the app allows fans to literally insert themselves and their friends into a mini episode with the cast, where they became part of the plotline, creating a powerful piece of content meant to be shared.
“This is the type of experience our viewers have come to expect from us. To be able to give them fresh content, and make them a part of the experience is truly exceptional, and with the power of social media we can do that,” said Sabrina Caluori, Vice President, social media & performance marketing, HBO.
The Facebook app is the latest in a series of successful promotional initiatives. Upon the launch of the first season, a carbonated drink called Tru Blood was commercialized which replicated the packaging of the homonymous synthetic blood drink consumed by vampires in the series (you can visit the drink’s website at http://www.trubeverage.com/). Among other things, the website includes information on all their blood drinks (Type O, Type A, Type B, Type AB) and a type finder to figure out which blood drink is right for you.
On the occasion of the launch of the second season in 2009, HBO teamed up with BMW, to deliver a campaign targeting… vampires! The advertising campaign comprises national print, online and outdoor media, with print running in US Weekly, AM New York, New York Observer and trade outlets. Ads, featuring blood-red versions of the Mini Cooper and Mini Clubman, have headlines like: “Feel the Wind in Your Fangs” and “Type GO.”
Other brands featured include Harley-Davidson, Gillette, Monster.com, and Ecko. Kate Alini, Mini marketing communications manager, explains that HBO and Digital Kitchen, the network’s agency, approached Mini a month ago. “After evaluating it, we thought it interesting, fun, and unique. They came up with the concept and were dead on and authentic with our brand identity. But it was their concept,” she says.