Creative marketing efforts for brands like 20th Century Fox, HBO and Netflix were honored at The Clio Entertainment Awards Thursday night. From Blu-ray package takeovers to experiential activations, these campaigns stood out for creativity, innovation and for capturing the public’s attention in entertaining ways.
20th Century Fox: Deadpool 2
Twentieth Century Fox was named Studio of the Year due in no small part to their ongoing (and unusual) Deadpool 2 marketing efforts.
“The Ultimate Anti-Marketing Campaign” was honored for the studio’s theatrical partnerships to help launch Deadpool 2 into the public conscious. The studio took home Clio Grand awards for its Bob Ross parody, “Paintings,” Blu-ray package takeover “Photobomb” and a San Diego Comic-Con toilet seat cover that said, “This is all Fox could afford!” Twentieth Century Fox and its agency partners also received a Clio Grand honor for its 30-second trailer called “Holy $#itballs.”
Astonishingly, the studio was presented with a Clio Grand award for every Deadpool 2 campaign entered.
If garnering audience and media attention is a reason for winning, it’s no wonder that 20th Century Fox took home the top honors. Marketing for its Deadpool sequel has including everything from coloring pages to a Blockbuster store, and they’re not done yet. The studio will release Once Upon a Deadpool for a limited theater engagement this holiday, providing teenagers and their families with a PG-13 cut starring Fred Savage.
— Deadpool Movie (@deadpoolmovie) August 28, 2018
HBO took home a Clio Grand for its SXSW experiential marketing campaign that dropped guests into a 90,000 square-foot ‘wild west’ town. The experience was littered with Easter eggs designed to promote Westworld‘s second season.
Decorated, detailed and staffed by 66 actors, the secluded Westworld SXSW activation gained so much attention that the campaign earned 1.9 billion impressions in social media and news coverage. Tickets sold out in just two minutes.
Westworld easily became the most talked-about activation at the show. AList was in attendance and caught up with HBO’s director of program marketing and strategy.
“There is a lot of fertile ground with Westworld,” Steven Cardwell told AList. “The universe of the show makes it a marketer’s dream to further build it out and engage fans. We’re going beyond the impression of a traditional advertisement at SXSW. It’s about creating a true experience that brings impact and buzz for us.”
— Westworld (@WestworldHBO) March 10, 2018
Netflix: Netflix is a Joke, Stranger Things
The popular streaming platform took home three Clio Grands in 2018.
When Netflix wanted to tease its new comedy line-up, it used cryptic billboards that said simply, “Netflix is a Joke.” The guerrilla marketing campaign had consumers wondering whether it was an ad or an attack. The truth was revealed at the Emmy Awards when Netflix debuted a series of ads in which stand-up comedians were inserted into popular shows like House of Cards, Stranger Things and Orange is the New Black. Both campaign elements—the billboards and subsequent TV spots—took home Clio Grands.
— Netflix Is A Joke (@NetflixIsAJoke) September 22, 2017
Another campaign winner was for the second season of Stranger Things. Netflix wanted to reach audiences in Brazil, who still hadn’t caught on to the show’s phenomenon. The company transformed its channel into one hour of free, ’80s-themed TV that included a free episode of Stranger Things and faux commercials that told viewers how to sign up on devices of the era.
Dubbed “Stranger Broadcast,” the TV takeover was a partnership with Brazil’s second-largest network, SBT. Additional commercials promoted fake products related to the series, such as bicycles and a “Walko Talko” and a documentary that mashed real news footage to imply chupacabra sightings were, in fact, the Demogorgon from Stranger Things.
See the full list of winners here.