Today’s consumers are more sophisticated than ever, and they’re hip to the often wily ways of advertising. That means in order to get noticed and sell their wares, companies have to get a lot more creative…and strange. Here are some companies that promoted their products by making other, bizarre products.
Are $300 basketball shoes just too much for your budget? Do you also like pizza and are too lazy to pick up a phone and order one? Then Pizza Hut’s “Pie Tops” are just what you need. They’re shoes enabled with Wi-Fi — at the press of a button, the shoes connect to a smartphone app that automatically orders your favorite, pre-arranged pizza. They look great with a Pizza Parka, another jokey Pizza Hut offering. It’s a winter jacket made out of the same insulating material that delivery workers use to keep pizzas warm on the drive over.
Kentucky Fried Candles
In recent years, KFC has thrown out its down-home comfort food image in favor of a sillier aesthetic. They’ve got a different comedian playing founder Colonel Sanders every few weeks, and they’ve released promotional comic books, records, paintings, sunscreen, and “Finger-Lickin’ Nail Polish.” Their most recent offering: a candle with the scent of their famous fried chicken. KFC released the candle only as a social media giveaway, reserved for KFC fans who enter a contest to come up with new KFC products.
Cheetos are delicious, of course, but what makes them so tasty is what also makes them a bother to eat: All that Cheeto dust that stays on your hands…which turns into a goopy paste if you try to lick it off, and then that takes forever to wash off. Cheetos’ marketing department has decided to finally acknowledge the problem with Colour de Cheetos. For only $11.99, the stuff will temporarily turn your skin the same color of Cheetos, so you don’t need to dispose of the dust.
Part of the charm of the first Guardians of the Galaxy movie was a soundtrack of ‘70s pop chestnuts. The second film, released earlier this year, was similarly propelled by a classic pop “mixtape.” Fans could download the tracks, buy the soundtrack album…or just find a specially-marked bag of Doritos. A tiny digital music player was built into the packaging, which included control buttons and a handy headphone jack.