The four leading actresses of the film and
TV series 'Sex in the City' and director
Michael Patrick King.

Material Girls Make ‘Sex and the City’ a Marketing Bonanza

May 16, 2008 03:31 PM
by Anne Szustek
The movie won’t hit U.S. theaters until May 30, but product placement and marketing tie-ins are already taking center stage.

30-Second Summary

The New York lives of “Sex and the City” characters Carrie, Samantha, Miranda and Charlotte are seen by many women as symbols of feminine empowerment—partly because of their strong commitment to retail therapy. And that view is not lost on advertisers.

Several companies feel that aligning their clients’ products with the elite standard of living depicted in the show will accord higher status to their brands. With Jimmy Choo and Manolo Blahnik now household names thanks in part to protagonist Carrie Bradshaw’s $700-a-pair shoe habit, brands are lining up to rake in the retail dollars of the movie’s audience.

Case in point: Jodi Watson, whose high-end accessories rental site Bag, Borrow or Steal was approached by New Line Cinema about a marketing partnership, said that the deal was “a real Cinderella story.” And Skyy Vodka and bar-and-grill chain Houlihan’s, both among eight of the movie’s official sponsors, are to be part of a cocktail line featuring drinks named for each of the four main characters.

A similar marketing success of note was evening soap opera “Desperate Housewives,” which boosted its 2004 premier when, in a bid to reach its namesake target market, marketers promoted the show on dry cleaning bags.

But while advertisers see the “SATC” movie as a happy ending, some just want the hype to end. Chicago Tribune columnist John Kass created a get-out-of-film pass for men who may be subjected to seeing the movie, and Gawker wonders in jest whether suburbanites buying into the movie’s featured items will “feel fabulous.”

Headline Link: ‘“Sex and the City” Film a Marketing Dream’

Video: Long ‘Sex and the City’ trailer

Background: ‘Stars at Sex and the City Launch’

Historical Context: ‘Ad for Television Show Becomes Element of the Show’

Opinion & Analysis: ‘Imaginary women’ making guys’ lives miserable

Reference: ‘Sex and the City’

Related Topic: ‘Fashion and “Sin Sectors” Flourish Despite Economic Downturn’


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