Snuggie Blankets Market with Extensions

The “blanket with sleeves” is back with a bigger selection.

Snuggie, which shot to popularity this winter and became a pop culture punchline with parodies on YouTube, is returning in September with new styles and a kids’ version.

The product, marketed by Allstar Marketing Group, will still be available in the original one-size-fits-all version, but the company has added some new colors to the mix, including camel and hunter green plus Snuggie Wild Side, which comes in leopard and zebra print. There will also be a softer Snuggie variety available, made with a plush fabric, a kid-sized blanket available in two solid colors, and a pink one for adults to support the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. Allstar will donate $50,000 to the foundation on the behalf of that product.

A rep said that ads will support the new line, but the ads haven’t been shot yet.

Allstar Marketing spent $12.2 million on measured media in 2008 and $14.3 million from January to April of this year advertising the product. Those ads, which had all the hallmarks of the direct response genre (including an 800 number and a “special bonus” booklight), were quickly parodied.

One such clip called “Snuggie Cult” features the video from the ad but is dubbed by a man comparing the actors’ activities, such as reading, answering a phone call and doing homework, to those of cult members because of the blanket’s similarity to a robe. A similar video, called “The WTF Blanket (Snuggie Parody),” pokes fun at the premise of the infomercial, calling blankets without sleeves “confusing.” The dubbed voice makes crass jokes in an unenthusiastic tone and the poster’s description of the video says, “The WTF Blanket will cripple your social life.”

Together, the “Snuggie Cult” and “WTF Blanket” videos have received more than 5.5 million views.

All of that attention, plus exposure on Oprah, Ellen DeGeneres and The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, led to the sale of 5 million Snuggies within the first five months of its release.