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Marketing Lessons We Can All Learn From Minions

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Written by: Ali Razzi

Minions are everywhere. The marketing and promotion for this new animated movie has gone above and beyond what the public has come to expect from new movie releases. The minions have been inescapable, but how well has that really worked, and what lessons can other marketers learn from the minions campaign? 

Bigger Isn’t Always Better

A giant minion was scheduled to appear at a fairground in Dublin, Ireland last week, but the 30-foot balloon got loose from the ropes after heavy winds and floated into the street. It caused a huge traffic jam and the police had to come deflate the balloon and wheelbarrow him away, making a large scene. While this did get the movie some added attention, and a huge balloon floating towards you on your drive into work is certainly going to get you to remember the movie, this may not be the impact you want to make on future viewers.

Capture Both Mom and the Kids

Partnering with a variety of brands and products has gotten the Minions on everything, and that means it’s become a household name for both adults and kids. Sure, Minions is an animated movie for children, but parents are the ones that have to take their kids to see it. If they’re invested in the brand as well, that’s more likely to happen. In doing this, Minions now appear on products for children, which of course their parents buy for them, but also products that aren’t necessarily for children. They’ve been on Amazon shipping boxes, Tic Tacs, Twinkies, Swiffer dusters, and even the masthead of the Los Angeles Times. The visibility of the brand because of the large variety of products it’s featured on has greatly expanded the potential audience. We saw this with the Simpsons movie, when they inserted their own products into 7-11 stores for customers to interact with. They even held a competition to find which Springfield in America would get to host the movie.

Know How to Quit When You’re Ahead

With such an aggressive marketing plan, Minions are on the track to quickly becoming overexposed and annoying customers more than entertaining them. There’s even a Reddit group with over 26,000 members called “MinionHate”. We’ve seen this before with brands that are incessant with their advertising. You don’t want to burn people out from your product before reaching your sales peak, and you definitely don’t want to burn them out from your brand all together. Remember that moderation is more likely to work for your product than the $593 million dollar “let’s just put it on everything” tactic of the Minions.

For now there seems to be no escaping the Minions and all of their marketing ploys, but only time will tell if Universal’s extremely aggressive approach continues to grow their brand. Until then we can all just enjoy, or hate, everything yellow wearing overalls and glasses.

Ali Razzi is a Junior Associate at Flackable, LLC, a national public relations agency supporting the communications needs of registered investment advisors (RIAs) and other forward-thinking financial services firms. To learn more about Flackable, please visit www.flackable.com.

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