In a welcome sign for a new expanded audience for the franchise, Star Trek is headed back to fast food. Back in February TrekMovie reported that one of the components of the merchandising for the new Star Trek movie would be at a major fast food outlet, noting ‘probably Burger King.’ And Burger King has just officially confirmed they will be doing a promotional tie-in for the new Trek film.
Paramount giving new Star Trek the tentpole treatment
Burger King made the Trek announcement in their quarterly investor conference call yesterday. In discussing various partner campaigns planned for next year, CEO John Chidsey stated "we believe our movie lineup with The Pink Panther, Star Trek, and Transformers will resonate with super fans and super families globally." TrekMovie has also independently confirmed the Star Trek/Burger King merchandising deal. Paramount and Burger King have worked together on a number of recent promotions, including this year’s Iron Man and Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull as well as last year’s Transformers movie. However this will be the first Star Trek promotion with Burger King. Burger King has also worked with the other major studios, including Fox for the recent Star Wars prequels.
Advertising Age discussion of the importance of fast food marketing
There are no details on the campaign yet, but other recent Burger King movie campaigns involved in-store promotions, internet campaigns/games, as well as targeted TV advertising (with separate campaigns for kids and adults). In-store campaigns usually involve special meals and toys and sometimes uniquely branded food items. For example, this summer Burger King offered the ‘Indy Double Whopper.’ These tie-ins should help the new Star Trek movie achieve its goal of breaking into the mainstream audience.
BK commercial for Indy 4
BK commercial for Star Wars Episode III
Star Trek: Fast Food pioneer
Burger King is the second largest hamburger franchise and fourth largest food franchise in the world, with over 11,000 outlets in 69 countries. This kind of deal is all part of Trek’s big comeback to the mainstream. In 1979 the first ever licensed tie-in for a McDonald’s Happy Meal was for Star Trek The Motion Picture, however since then food merchandising for Trek has not usually been a major part of the marketing mix. Star Trek III: The Search For Spock in 1984 had a free glasses promotion at Taco Bell and the last Trek film, 2002’s Star Trek Nemesis, only had a coupon promotion at Del Taco, a small regional chain. This return to the big time is a welcome sign for the new Star Trek.
1979 McDonald’s commercial promoting Star Trek TMP
1984 Taco Bell commercial for Star Trek III
More food promotions coming
In our earlier preview of Trek movie merchandising it was mentioned that there may not be additional food merchandising. However, according to multiple sources, Paramount and CBS have signed up at least one other major food deal that will be bringing Star Trek movie branded products to grocery stores, at least in the US (possibly world wide). This is also a welcome sign as supermarket merchandising is a great way to reach kids (and moms) who must be part of the expanded audience Paramount is seeking for Star Trek. Trek’s previous forays into supermarket merchandising have been hit and miss, but who can forget the ‘marshmallow dispenser’ from Star Trek V?
Past Trek film food tie-ins for ‘Star Trek V’ and ‘First Contact’
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