- Hasbro has teamed with vacation rental website Vrbo to outfit a lakeside mansion with branding and gear from its toy blaster line Nerf, according to a press release.
- The 12-bedroom abode on Grand Lake O' the Cherokees in Oklahoma fits up to 30 people and features walls of Nerf blasters as well as themed bedding, décor and a dedicated training station. The first-come, first-serve listing goes live for booking at noon CT on Sept. 1, and the family that secures the spot will have their stay from Sept. 24-26.
- The scenic space also serves as the location for the latest season of the "Nerf House Showdown" series on YouTube. The weekly scripted-reality program, two episodes of which are already streaming, follows a diverse group of teen Nerf enthusiasts as they participate in a variety of activities, including an obstacle course on the water and spicy food eating challenges.
Hasbro is partnering with a leading vacation rental platform to provide fans with an immersive, memorable weekend tied to its Nerf brand. Along with the dozen bedrooms available, the toy blaster-themed house features five living areas, wraparound decks, a large yard, fire pit and easy access to the lake. The spaciousness is intended to provide the winning family a chance to unplug and spend quality time together, themes that animate Vrbo's latest advertising campaign as the company looks to spur consumers to travel again during the pandemic.
Prior to renting the house, Nerf used the venue as a location for its latest YouTube series, which will run 35 episodes. The digital content play draws from the reality TV competition playbook and comes as part of the brand's growing initiatives around amplifying diverse creators and expanding its social media footprint.
Earlier this year, Nerf joined video-sharing app TikTok and put out the call for a Chief TikTok Officer, asking established creators to apply. The CTO role, eventually filled by top account @Nerfers101, is responsible for generating 10 to 12 approved videos for the official Nerf page per month and works closely with Nerf's global marketing team. The marketer followed up that effort this summer with the Nerf TikTok Tourney, a crowd-sourced tournament event promoting its Nerf Hyper Blaster line.
As brands try to stoke consumer enthusiasm during an uncertain period, outside-the-box partnerships could be more appealing. Earlier this week, packaged foods brand Oscar Mayer revealed it was adding its famous Wienermobile to ride-hailing app Lyft's vehicle fleet. Lyft users in select U.S. cities who ordered an XL ride in recent days were surprised to be picked up by the 27-foot-long, hot dog-shaped car.
Home-sharing is another method of catering to diehard fans who may be looking for a more holistic branded experience. Two years ago, chief Hasbro competitor Mattel created a pop-up Airbnb listing based on Barbie's iconic Malibu Dreamhouse. The glitzy, mid-century modern home celebrated the doll line's 60th anniversary.