Genius Marketing: Band Creates Stir with Cryptic Teaser Video

Rarely am I wowed by marketing messages.

A barrage of promotional emails litter my inbox daily. Some I open, others I delete and still others I open only to unsubscribe from (again).

But, then I received an email from My Chemical Romance. Not just any email announcing that the disbanded group of musicians were offering discounts on remaining merchandise or that the My Chem’s albums were available on vinyl.

Instead the subject line, “Watch This,” seemed to beckon me.

So I did.

What followed was a 34-second video of a flag waving and the piano lead-in to the title track of the band’s biggest album, “The Black Parade.” At the end a date flashed: 9/23/16.

The band posted the same video on its Twitter account – along with a spiffy new logo. Frenzied fans took to social media, trying desperately to find out what it all meant. The Internet hoopla caused a stir in the media as well, with reporters guessing at a reunion tour, a new album and finally (and correctly) a re-issue of the 10-year-old “The Black Parade.”

As a long-time My Chemical Romance fan, I’m disappointed that the big news was a reissue of an album I’ve had for a decade.

But, from a marketing standpoint, the approach was nothing short of sheer brilliance.

Here’s why:

  1. It piqued curiosity

The seemingly simplest of subject lines led me to click: “Watch This.” My initial thought was “watch what”? Afterward, I, along with the 629,028 other viewers, were left wondering what My Chemical Romance had in store.

My Chemical Romance's obscure video was marketing magic.

My Chemical Romance’s obscure video was marketing magic.

  1. It built anticipation

September 23 couldn’t come fast enough for fans who took to Twitter tweeting with the hashtags #MCRX and #TheBlackParade, causing both to trend within hours of the July 20 announcement. The video, by the next day, had been retweeted 140,000 times and liked 190,000 times.

  1. It got attention

The cryptic video – and little else – was enough for reporters from Spin, Variety, Entertainment Weekly, Rolling Stone, among others, to write articles and, in many cases, speculate about the future.

What marketing strategies have wowed you recently? Share your thoughts here.

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