Simpsons Movie Marketing Paying Off
Twentieth Century Fox's elaborate marketing campaign for its forthcoming The Simpsons Movie appears to be achieving the desired impact. Hitwise, a research firm that tracks Internet usage, said Wednesday that the Simpsons website was the second-most-visited broadcast TV website for the week ended July 21, accounting for 8.23 percent of the traffic. (No. 1 was NBC's America's Got Talent with 12.52 percent of the traffic.) Furthermore, today's (Thursday) Los Angeles Times reported that 7-Eleven stores that were converted into Kwik-E-Marts for the month have been doing land-office business. Swarn Sahni, who owns the 7-Eleven franchise in Burbank, CA that now displays the Kwik-E-Mart signage, told the newspaper, "The Simpsons fans are spending money like crazy. ... I usually sell 800 hot dogs a week. Now I'm selling about 3,000 a week." He also said that the store had sold 57,510 "Sprinklicious" doughnuts since the campaign began. Moreover, an appearance by the Simpsons characters on the Tonight show Wednesday created a stir as Homer led off by asserting that NBC stands for Never Been Crappier and that owner GE "fill the air with more dangerous hydrocarbon emissions than Rosie O'Donnell." Meanwhile, a website set up by promotional partner Burger King in which users can turn themselves into Simpsons-like characters has drawn so many web surfers that the company is reportedly having to deal with a backlash from angered customers who have been unable to access it.