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The Sopranos? Yellow cabs?

“A dead person? In a yellow cab? In the middle of New York? And his/her arm is hanging out! What happened? What’s that sticker? Oh, it’s just a fake body. That was funny.”

That’s basically how the producers and marketeers of The Sopranos, a television show about the mob, want you to see not only their campaign, but the show. The show itself is about a family of mobsters and their daily lives. It’s funny, witty and serious at the same time. So how to market something like that and attract attention? Because nowadays a television show doesn’t necessarily have to be good to get good ratings (i.e. Jersey Shore), but it needs a certain image to go with the name. Television shows have to become brand names.

And how do you create an image, a brand and recognition for something as complex as a television show? Because the classical ways of marketing might not work, a product can be marketed from a rather simple perspective, shoes need to be trendy, headphones need to produce good sound, but a television show is a service, and a particularly hard one to differentiate from other similar services.

In this case the marketeers of The Sopranos decided to do something that represents the show and shows consumers what the show stands for and what it’s about in a single funny experience. I’m referring to the first sentence in this post. What were you thinking when you saw this? Probably something similar to the first sentence. And in my opinion, that’s why this campaign is good. It gives consumers the urge to “at least try and watch the show once”.


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