Marketers See Opportunity to Exploit the End of the World

Tongue in Cheek, Aiming at a Sweet Tooth (New York Times)

In Mayan Doomsday, Marketers See $$$ Opportunity (NBC News)

The countdown has begun to the end of the world. According to constant and inescapable reminders on television programs, in the news media and on Internet sites, the world ends on Friday, December 21. Of course, most of the world is not buying into any of this and view Friday as just another day. Yet, there are two diverse groups who do see this day as being important – doomsday believers and marketers.

Marketers see Friday as a marketing opportunity. They know that many of their customers are aware of the Mayan myth surrounding the earth?s demise and are taking advantage of the day by rolling out special promotions. For instance, in these two stories we see several examples of how marketers have built short-term promotions around this day. For instance, travel firms are offering unique vacation packages built around the predictions of the last day.

Additionally, Jell-O is running an advertising campaign to mark the event that features one ad focused on days leading up to December 21 and another ad that will pick up the story the day after.

While the doomsday believers see this as useless, the rest of us should get a nice laugh from these spots.

For $12,021, The Curtis Hotel offered a “Party Like There’s No-To-Maya” special that included rental of an entire floor of the Denver hotel along with Doomsday supplies including anti-radiation tablets, freeze-dried food and gas masks. A tattoo artist was also included if guests wanted to mark the end of the world with some fresh ink.

What other one-time events have attracted the attention of marketers?