Timberland Co. is basing its biggest-ever advertising and marketing campaign on a promotional affiliation with "The Lost World: Jurassic Park." The Universal Studios movie exceeded $92.7 million in gross receipts over its first three days in May 1997. Actors wear Timberland shoes and clothes in the movie. The company also has put promotional materials at the point of purchase in 1,500 stores throughout the US. Timberland officials believe the tie-in will help sales.
Full Text :COPYRIGHT 1997 Fairchild Publications, Inc.
NEW YORK-- When it comes to chomping meals on the go, three out of three tyrannosaurs prefer their main course to be dressed in Timberland apparel and footwear.
Timberland, the footwear and apparel company, is riding the coattails of what could very well be this summer's biggest box office hit: The Lost World:
Jurassic Park. Timberland's apparel and shoes have cameo appearances in the film and the manufacturer has launched its largest marketing and advertising campaign in conjunction with the movie in the company's 24-year history.
Product tie-ins with movies have long been popular for fast food and soft- drink companies. On a smaller scale, designer and apparel companies have furnished product to movies -- Brioni to James Bond, for instance -- but apparel companies in general have been less aggressive than other consumer-product categories in using Hollywood as a marketing partner.
Timberland has placed point-of-purchase materials in 1,500 retail doors across in the country -- in stores ranging from Foot Locker to Dillard's to Bloomingdale's. Although Timberland does not plan on producing any licensed Lost World merchandise and its product isn't easily identifiable in the movie (the actors spend most of the movie slogging through mud and muck), the company is banking on the film's overwhelming popularity to boost sales.
"We were more interested in the promotional deal," said Roger Rydell, vice-president of corporate communications at Timberland. In addition to point-of-purchase materials, Timberland produced a new print-advertising campaign and a 30-second television commercial in conjunction with Mercedes-Benz, another Lost World product partner.
Rydell declined to describe terms of the deal with Universal Studios or say how much Timberland is spending on the ad campaign or even how much it expects to make from the agreement. Industry estimates say such product tie-ins usually cost manufacturers more than a few million simply for the right to tie in to the movie.
"We've never done a movie projection before," Rydell said. "So we don't know what the monetary potential could be. However, since it's the largest promotion that we've ever done and it's coupled with an entertainment property that has the potential to be the largest grossing film in history, we're very confident that it's going to be a good traffic driver at retail."
Besides Timberland, several other major name brands, including Kodak and Burger King, also appear in the movie and are much more easily identifiable than the rugged outwear and boots worn by the cast. "That's just the nature of our product," Rydell said. "We were more excited with the opportunity to tie in to the hottest entertainment property of the year and use it to market our product, than to actually see our product appear in the movie."
The film, which kicked off the summer movie season this past weekend, shattered box-office records, grossing more than $92.7 million during its first three days. Universal expects to recover just about all of the $100 million it spent on the film. The first Jurassic Park earned more than $1 billion worldwide.
"We figured it would be a great environment for our product," Rydell said. "Since they were going to be off filming in the jungle, we thought it would put our product in a great light." Timberland's relationship with the film began as a request for footwear for the film's leading characters. It continued to evolve until it included footwear promotional rights to the film in select Timberland retail locations throughout the world.
As part of the association, Timberland is launching a contest in which consumers have the opportunity to win a trip to an authentic dinosaur dig. Consumers can enter at any retailer featuring the point-of-purchase materials. "It's an opportunity to go on a dig, with the paleontologists that served as consultants on the film," Rydell said. "The digs will take place in Alberta, Canada, at Dinosaur National Park and in Egg Mountain, Montana, he added.
On the licensing front, it's one down, one to go for Lost World as it looks past its $90 million opening-weekend record to go after the $1 billion licensing record set by the original Jurassic Park. Although officials at Universal Studios and DreamWorks SKG on Tuesday dodged questions about specific projections for Lost World licensed merchandise, the early box-office record gave a boost to those who look for the sequel to shatter licensing records as well.
Named Works: The Lost World: Jurassic Park (Motion picture) Contracts
Kaplan, Don. "Timberland ties in to dinosaur mania." Daily News Record 27.64 (1997): COV+. Popular Magazines. Web. 6 Dec. 2009.
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