How brands jumped on to the 'Friends: The Reunion' bandwagon

Brands like Bumble India, Zomato, John Jacobs Eyewear, and many others have come up with quirky messages around the much-anticipated episode of the American sitcom to stream on ZEE5 in India

e4m by Tasmayee Laha Roy
Published: May 24, 2021 8:49 AM  | 4 min read
Friends: The Reunion

Friends: The Reunion has flooded all social timelines and brands are also taking note of it. As Zee5 gets set to broadcast the special reunion episode in India, brands are ensuring that this made-for 'moment marketing' event doesn't go waste.

While ZEE5 is making the most of this opportunity, brands like Bumble India, Zomato, John Jacobs Eyewear and many others have come up with quirky messaging around the much-anticipated episode of the American sitcom.

John Jacobs Eyewear for instance put up a creative on social media with a message that said, “To everyone with eyewear issues, we've got you! After all, what are F.R.I.E.N.D.S for?”

For them, their approach to crafting content is centred around delivering conversation starters and topics that resonate with their audience. “Leveraging innovative content around trending conversations enables us to strike the right chord with our customers. Keeping our topical strategy fresh helps us increase our engagement and create catchy scroll-stoppers. This strategy also gives our content space to stand out and become memorable well beyond the trend of the day,” Mahalaxmi Iyer, Head Of Brand Marketing said.

Food delivery aggregator Zomato hits the right soft spot of food with a nostalgia theme with the undercurrent of the Friends Nostalgia and emphasized another reunion that Indians can't wait for.

“Overall it is always an interesting idea to ride on something that is already in the news. Friends has been an iconic sitcom that continues to be one of the top watches of all times. The fandom associated with it brings in a good opportunity for brands to create good content around but only if it is positioned in a way that it fits in. Zomato for instance keeps doing such messaging regularly but contextually bringing it back to business. That is the kind of messaging that works best for moment marketing initiatives,” Sanjay Mehta, Joint CEO, Mirum India.

How do such initiatives help brands?

“Moments are important. And they will be marketed. The Friends Reunion is a moment in itself. Moments such as these have happened before in the physical word with brands that have broken up and reassembled after years. But then that was not a digitally-led world as today is. Therefore this is an important vehicle to use and monetize for brands. Today, moments such as a reunion, and that too a Friends reunion is even more important as the pandemic has not allowed much for it. This fills the pandemic void. This fuels vicarious living of a different order altogether even,” said brand expert and founder of the Harish Bijoor Consults Inc Harish Bijoor.

HBO Max will debut FRIENDS: THE REUNION special on Thursday, May 27 in the US, the one-year anniversary of HBO Max’s launch. “Friends” stars Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry, and David Schwimmer return to the iconic comedy’s original soundstage, Stage 24, on the Warner Bros. Studio lot in Burbank for a real-life unscripted celebration of the beloved show. 

FRIENDS: THE REUNION will feature a variety of special guest appearances including David Beckham, Justin Bieber, BTS, James Corden, Cindy Crawford, Cara Delevingne, Lady Gaga, Elliott Gould, Kit Harington, Larry Hankin, Mindy Kaling, Thomas Lennon, Christina Pickles, Tom Selleck, James Michael Tyler, Maggie Wheeler, Reese Witherspoon and Malala Yousafzai.

Zee 5 too is looking forward to the airing of this grand episode. Manish Kalra, Chief Business Officer, ZEE5 India said, "We are extremely excited to bring ‘FRIENDS: THE REUNION’ exclusively on ZEE5 for the Indian market. ‘FRIENDS’ is amongst the world's most-watched and loved sitcoms and it is a great opportunity for us to present their reunion, something that the world has been talking about, on ZEE5 for ‘FRIENDS’ fans in India. ZEE5 is the home of entertainment for millions and fans across regions and languages can enjoy ‘FRIENDS: THE REUNION’ from the safety of their homes.”

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