NEW YORK What are the odds? Both Las Vegas and Vegas.com launched new campaigns this week.
Las Vegas, in the form of the Las Vegas Conventions and Visitors Authority, partnered with Sony Pictures Entertainment for a campaign centered on the March 28 release of 21. The movie, based on a true story, is about a group of college kids who won millions of dollars counting cards in Las Vegas.
The campaign includes two 30-second spots of clips from the movie that carry no branding for Las Vegas. In "Room Service," a young man in bed gropes for the phone and asks for room service. As the camera pulls back, it becomes obvious that he is not in a hotel. The operator informs him that there is no room service at the campus cafeteria. Then the "Someone's Vegas is showing" super flashes onto the screen, followed by more clips from the movie.
"Someone's Vegas is showing" is a reference to yourvegasisshowing.com, a site launched in January by R&R Partners, Las Vegas CVA's longtime ad agency. On the site users can make crests related to Vegas with sayings such as "Weekend MVP" and "Ratpacker."
The cross-promotion came about after a year of discussions between Las Vegas CVA, R&R and Sony Pictures Entertainment. In addition, Orbitz is running a Mullen-produced promotion to win a trip to Vegas.
"They hand held us through the whole shooting process about how to integrate themselves into our media campaign," said George Leon, evp, consumer marketing, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Los Angeles. "They knew the script and story and it was about getting both creative teams together to figure out what our objectives were."
In addition to the spots, R&R staged an after-party for the movie premiere that took place last week in Las Vegas. It continued the "Your Vegas is showing" theme by having local staples like showgirls and a magician at the party.
"For us, their movie exemplifies some of our brand ideals. Vegas stands for a message of transformation and people come here to do things they wouldn't do anywhere else," said Rob O'Keefe, group account director, independent R&R, Las Vegas. "You break away from who you are in everyday life and their movie is about kids who transform from who they are vividly."
Vegas.com's campaign, in contrast to the Las Vegas CVA, is about the jaded perspectives of venerable Sin City residents. Three 30-second spots point out all the wild and crazy things Vegas.com employees, and by extension readers of the site, see on a daily basis. (Vegas.com is not affiliated with the CVA.)
In "Backstage," a beaten-down Vegas.com employee travels through the backstage area of a show. He passes showgirls, synchronized swimmers in a pool and acrobats to arrive at an upfront seat as the show is about to begin. After taking a flute of Champagne, he wearily declines to be fed a strawberry by an attractive female companion.
Print and interactive will carry the same theme. Extra footage is being seeded in an attempt to make it go viral.