Expect a Lot of Sponsored Tweets and ‘Experiential Marketing’ During the Oscars


Vanity Fair publisher Edward J. Menicheschi tells Stuart Elliott of The New York Times that “Oscar night is Vanity Fair’s Super Bowl“, and the mag will go all out this year to prove it.

The brands sponsoring the awards and the top two magazines covering them (VF and People) plan to stage “events” rather than simple advertisements or social campaigns. What will those events encompass?

The “Vanity Fair social club”, sponsored by L’Oreal and Chrysler, will host more than 100 “influential” media folks covering the Oscars. They’ll be pushing the #VFSocialClub tag well over a week before the event itself, though the Academy apparently has not required them to hype its own sponsors in exchange for press access. Baby steps…

People went a bit more modest with its “Fan Experience”, inviting 300 sweepstakes winners and their guests to basically sit around and watch the proceedings from ringside seats on Hollywood Boulevard.

As for the companies trying to siphon off some of that all-important eyeball-time, sponsor Banana Republic will go unofficial with “a YouTube celebrity [appearing] live on the red carpet in a custom version of a dress from the Banana Republic spring collection.”

In other words, expect an even less organized version of E! Live from the Red Carpet. Sounds nondescript, though the actors on hand will probably prefer avoiding one spokesperson rather than waving while running away from both Ryan Seacrest and Guiliana Rancic.

We’re a little more interested in the potential of the “vending machine powered by Twitter” which will supposedly give stuff to viewers who tweet participating brands’ hashtags, though we’re a little concerned about shipping costs…

In our humble opinions, the biggest sponsorship coup goes to WeWork, which provides office space for startup companies; its brand name will adorn all the clubby influencers’ spaces. Using the world’s most indulgent night to promote practical products? What a concept!

@PatrickCoffee patrick.coffee@adweek.com Patrick Coffee is a senior editor for Adweek.