But why? In a podcast recorded during the movie's big opening weekend, Rick Mathieson and Rick Wootten talk about marketing campaign behind "It," which includes an ambitious VR experience, guerrilla marketing and more.
But was any of it even necessary? Or was this a movie that was just destined to make a killing?
As Rick & Rick continue their rants, raves and ruminations on marketing, media and popular culture, they turn their attention to a recent ADWEEK article citing research that finds 44% of Millennials think of their pets as 'starter children.'
Anyone who's ever had a child knows just how naive that is, of course. But you can't fault younger Millennials for being clueless about something they haven't yet experienced.
You can, however, fault self-styled marketing gurus who claim there's somehow some secret to marketing to this demographic that only they can reveal.
By now, most marketers understand that demographics are growing increasingly irrelevant. Technology now allows us to target the consumers most likely to purchase our products, regardless of superficial categorizations based on age.
As Fiona O'Donnell, Senior Lifestyle & Leisure for research firm Mintel once put it so well:
Companies or brands that successfully market to Millennials are ones that recognize that there is no such thing as a 'Millennial'—just individuals or groups of individuals who are at a similar life stage and have lived similar experiences. They want to be treated for who they are, rather than lumped together and labeled.
That's not to say those shared life experiences aren't important or leverageable. But ultimately, like all individuals, they want what they want, no matter their ages.
Of course, that doesn't mean Rick Mathieson and Rick Wootten aren't going to have a little fun at their (and the so-called gurus') expense.
The Ricktators sound off here:
RICK & RICK RULE THE WORLD: 'PEAK MILLENNIAL' & THE 'FUR BABY' ECONOMY
Their mission: To share a little of their ongoing stream-of-consciousness about all things cool in movies, TV shows, comics, video games, media, marketing and advertising. You name it, they've probably got something to say about it. Either way, it's going to be fun.
All the Ricksomeness starts here:
RICK & RICK RULE THE WORLD: VIDEO GAME MOVIES & ROBOT BUDDHIST PRIESTS (EP1/PT 1) ON ITUNES (6 MIN)
You knew somebody would eventually do it—and from the looks of it, Trixi Studios did it up right.
Using Apple's ARKit, the animation studio emulated the experience of A-ha's famous '80s music video "Take on Me."
According to Vocativ, it took the videographers 16 weeks to rotoscope the frames to create the original, this proof-of-concept app puts you into the video's fantastical world instantly. Check out this info video for more. —Rick Mathieson
We're McLovin' this new promotion from Mickey D's, which turns their recyclable drink trays into boom boxes for your iPhone.
It's not the first time this has been done, of course—Coca-Cola once famously turned a magazine print ad into a speaker system for mobile phones as well. But that doesn't make McDonald's promo any less fun (our loud).
As goes Whole Foods, so goes the future of grocery stores?
A lot has been made of Amazon's recent announcement that it will acquire Whole Foods for a whopping $13.7 billion (insert your own "Whole Paycheck" joke here).
Many have speculated the brand will continue to operate as it has, with enhanced pre-ordering and home delivery. But Amazon may have something far bigger in mind.
As Business Insider recently pointed out, Amazon released a video back in December on a concept it calls 'Amazon Go'.
Here, shoppers use an Amazon Go app to pre-order items in a virtual cart. When they get to the store, they simply walk in, scan the app at a turnstile, pick up the items they want, and walk out the door, without ever digging for cash, writing a check, swiping a card—or ever standing in line.
Using what Amazon calls "Just Walk Out" technology, Amazon Go leverages "deep learning algorithms, computer vision and sensor fusion" to keep track of what you pick up in-store. It'll even know if you put something back, or picked up additional items, and update your order. Everything's automatically charged to your account when you walk out the door.
It's a fascinating and compelling vision. It's also one shared by many others, of course.
It's been well over a decade since I started chatting with Seth Godin, Tom Nicholson and others about the concept—and how elements of it have already been applied for brands such as Prada and Tesco—as showcased in my books, The On-Demand Brand and Branding Unbound.
What I think is especially elegant about Amazon's concept is that it at least appears to remove the need for things like RFID tags to be applied at the item level, and for readers to be set up throughout the store—something that has so far proven costly and impractical. At least from this video, the technology appears to be completely invisible to the customer. The first Go location opened for Amazon employees in Seattle earlier this year.
It'll be a blast to see how the concept develops, and what role if any Whole Foods ultimately plays in its evolution.
However things play out there, it's hard to imagine some version of this concept is not just the future of Whole Foods or even just the grocery category.
KLM Airlines is thinking beyond the flight to help visitors to Amsterdam make their way around town.
Its new audio-enabled, location-aware "Care Tag" offers audio tips on things to see and do, based on where you are at any time. What's interesting is it consists of a speaker and an offline GPS module, so there's no telephony or Internet connection required. The voices even come from KLM crew members.
"At KLM we always go the extra mile to give you the best personal service during your flight," the airline says on a special site set up to promote the tags. "And now we are also looking after you during your stay. With the Care Tag, it feels like our crew is always with you to help you around."
Indeed, it's a perfect example of a travel brand using digital, data-based technology to extend the brand experience in a unique and compelling way.
Not exactly turning turning swords into plowshares, but perhaps it's even better.
The Humanium Initiative recycles metal from illegal weapons busts and forfeiting programs and then makes it available for commercial production by brands. As FastCompany reports, the idea is to make your products "a symbolic result of a less violent world."
Small wonder it won the Innovation Lions Grand Prix at this year's Cannes Lions Festival.