- Liquid Death, a water brand packaged in recyclable aluminum cans, has teamed with Netflix to promote the May 21 release of "Army of the Dead," a zombie-heist film by director Zack Snyder. Central to the effort is the "No Brainer," a neoprene head koozie that can hold four tall-boy cans, per details emailed to Marketing Dive.
- The No Brainer featured in an infomercial that aired on late night television in select markets and can be purchased for $29.99. The campaign will also include out-of-home (OOH) elements in Las Vegas, where the film is set, including a digital billboard at Resort World and a "collection of misfits" shilling the No Brainer on the street.
- The campaign, made in collaboration with L.A.-based ad agency Party Land, sees Liquid Death continuing its tradition of edgy, quirky efforts to break through in a CPG category dominated by legacy players.
Liquid Death's partnership with Netflix to promote "Army of the Dead" with the No Brainer koozie utilizes several techniques to connect with the younger consumers that have both flocked to streaming services and are the target audience for the canned water brand. Liquid Death's sustainable business model — which includes both aluminum cans and a 10% profit donation to nonprofits focused on plastic pollution and clean drinking water — is in line with what millennial and Gen Z consumers want from brands.
The No Brainer is an example of quirky merchandise that also ties into the movie's zombie-heist premise, making it well suited for both an over-the-top film from the director of "Justice League" and "300" and a water brand that has used its edgy positioning to separate itself from traditional bottled water brands. Previous Liquid Death campaigns have centered around demons in hell and turned haters' comments into a heavy metal album.
"When you have two brands who view marketing from an entertainment perspective as Liquid Death and Netflix do, you have full permission to go as big and creative as you want," Party Land CCO Matt Heath said in emailed comments. "Brand partnerships work best when the products are aligned. 'Army of the Dead' and Liquid Death are a match made in hell."
Along with the infomercial, which taps into nostalgia for a former staple of late-night TV, the campaign includes a variety of OOH elements to create buzz with residents of Las Vegas, where the film is set. The digital billboard, OOH placements and "collection of misfits" roaming the city to promote the No Brainer offer the brands a chance to go viral on social media. The elements also demonstrate how OOH is primed for growth in 2021 as the coronavirus recedes and people return to outdoor activities and burn out on device-time.
Along with the "Army of the Dead" campaign, Liquid Death last week announced a partnership with entertainment company Live Nation to become the exclusive water at many venues and festivals in the U.S. The partnership is timed to the opening of large venues for concerts and sporting events that are set to return in large scale as the country reopens amid the rollout of vaccines. Live Nation will become an equity partner in the brand, which recently closed a funding round and counts Wiz Khalifa, Machine Gun Kelly, Steve Aoki, Tony Hawk and others among its investors.