Friday, October 11, 2013

Will New Yorkers even notice?

NY is definitely the land of the weird.  Man in his underwear – must be the Naked Cowboy.  People talking to themselves – oh wait that happens everywhere now. 

But these past few weeks a couple of interesting promotions are making even jaded New Yorkers take a second look.  First there was a promotion for the new movie version of Carrie.  When a standard coffee shop argument turned telekinetic, even the most oblivious smartphone users reacted.  Here is the video that was distributed and run by various news outlets.

And this weekend, you may find a Star Trek character delivering your groceries.  GE has partnered with Star Trek to promote their “Brilliant Machines” with this commercial. 

For the local promo they have partnered with TaskRabbit to rebrand deliverers as TrekRabbits.  Post a task under $35 between 10/10 and 10/13 and you may find yourself randomly selected for a warp speed delivery. 

Hmm.  Sounds like fun, but will it really help GE sell stuff?  Or will New Yorkers assume that the characters are in town for ComicCon?  Likewise will viewers of the ‘sNice video go to see Carrie?  Will you?

McDaniel, M. (2013, October 7)  Customers Freak Out as Viral Video Unleashes 'Carrie' in a Coffee Shop.  Retrieved October 10, 2013, from

Golembewski, V. (2013, October 10)  Live Long & Prosper With Trekkie-Delivered Groceries.  Retrieved October 10, 2013, from


  1. The GE Star Trek commercial felt more like a Branding ad (i.e., similar to the Budweiser horses ad we saw in class), as it did not seem tied to a specific product but instead promoted their technological strengths, in this case their oil and gas fuel technology. Perhaps the commercial may have appealed more to tech-savvy consumers who know the TV show – but I’m not sure if the average person would be able to connect the dots and understand how this technology would benefit them. For example, a car consumer looking to buy a hybrid car might not care that it has the same GE technology that can help the Star Trek Enterprise accelerate at warp speed. I felt the same way about the TrekRabbits promotion – it seems like fun but perhaps more to promote the brand than to convince the consumer to buy something.

    As for the Carrie video, it seemed a bit over-the-top and psychotic, even for a horror film promo! It might convince true horror aficianados to see the movie, but probably not your average moviegoers. As for me, I always viewed the original Carrie as an interesting character study than a typical Friday the 13th-like shocker (though it’s been many years since I’ve seen it), and Sissy Spacek gave a great performance, so I’d rather just rent the original on Netflix!

  2. I had to watch twice the "Brilliant Machines" vide to find what is it about, as I am not familiar with GE, but have chance to see "Star Track".
    "Carrie" promotion is a very smart way to bring attention or specially revive the interest to the old story (movie). But personally, I think the promotion was a lot better than movie :)