Friday, October 18, 2019

Probably a Bad Idea

To be fair, I will grant that this promotional campaign is weird enough that it got me to post about it here on Augoeides. So maybe it's not a bad idea for all possible definitions of "bad." However, I do run into people from time to time who do magick even though they expect it not to work, and then are surprised or even shocked when it does. Spells are real and they can have real effects, and dismissing anything magical as an automatic joke can be problematic.

If your brand is called Liquid Death, why not hire a real-life Louisiana witch doctor to put a curse on your entire beverage inventory leading up to Halloween? That’s exactly what the Austrian spring water startup is doing with a campaign titled “Certified Cursed Liquid Death.”

In the campaign video, “practicing witch” Mystic Dylan is seen in a smoky warehouse preparing to cast an evil spell on cases of Liquid Death. “I call on the waters of Liquid Death and curse it with a witch’s breath,” he intones. “Curse this place, invade this product, invade those who would consume.”

Disclaimers at the end of the video warn that “Liquid Death is not responsible for what the demons do to you if you decide to consume it.” The video is running on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.

According to company co-founder and CEO Mike Cessario, if you’re going up against the beverage Goliaths of the real world, weirdness helps. “As crazy as the name is, it just also made so much sense for what the product mission is: to kill your thirst and help bring death to plastic bottles,” Cessario tells Marketing Daily.

He believes there’s a “false assumption” the wellness demographic isn’t interested in weird, tongue-in-cheek entertainment.

And that's all fine and good for a laugh - if they're not working with a real magical practitioner casting a real curse. According to the article this is being billed as a real magical operation, and if it really is cursed I don't recommend drinking the stuff. Meanwhile, Cessario sounds like he either doesn't know the difference between a real magical operation and a joke or just doesn't care.

Now hopefully any magician hired to do a stunt like this would just show off for the cameras without actually casting a real curse, so odds are this is basically a big joke. Still, with the way the campaign is structured it's hard to tell - and I'll freely admit that's probably the point.

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1 comment:

Paul said...

Someone gave me a can of this during the man burn at Burning Man. I thought it was so strange, but I certainly never forgot it.