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Netflix won’t be running any ads in “The Witcher,” but it will team up with one of the world’s leading marketers to create ads using themes and characters from the show.

As the streaming giant prepares to launch the second season of “The Witcher” this week, Procter & Gamble’s Old Spice will launch an advertisement that will give the characters in the series the chance to wonder if the deodorant could cure some of the deodorant. their ailments. The video features actor David Broughton Davies, who played a role in the fourth episode of the show’s first season, as he runs a tavern full of peasants singing about the smell of the world in which is set. The Witcher “.

“Nobody can run / Nobody can hide / Perils of soundtrack”, they chant during a scene of the video, which lasts 75 seconds. The companies plan to air the piece in front of theaters and on social media – in the hopes that fans will share it and pass it on to their friends.

“We want our audience to actually want to research our posts and communicate about them,” said Matt Krehbiel, vice president of Old Spice, in an interview. “Our hope is not that an ad is something someone wants to ignore,” he adds, “but something that someone wants to share with their friends.”

As part of the initiative, Old Spice will strive to generate conversation in places where “Witcher” fans are likely to congregate. Old Spice will broadcast the video for “Witcher” on “Critical Role,” a live show focused on Dungeons & Dragons, and launch a custom chatbot with a similar personality to Dandelion, the poet’s character in “Witcher,” for Reddit. , where it can be found on R / SmellyBardBot. Fans can also enter a quiz contest at for a chance to win limited edition Old Spice deodorants with scents based on Witcher themes, such as “Smell of Surprise” or “Yennefer’s Underarm”.

The ambitious marketing alliance is helping solve a growing Madison Avenue problem. For decades, major advertisers have attached their commercials to some of the most popular TV shows. Increasingly, however, these series are appearing on streaming sites that do not accept commercials and refuse to interrupt their shows with commercial breaks. Such partnerships are also helping outlets like Netflix, which need to spread awareness of new content at a time when consumers are inundated with new streaming prices.

Other advertising giants have taken big steps to associate their products with streaming favorites. In February 2019, Anheuser-Busch InBev ran a Super Bowl commercial that did the unthinkable – it left viewers thinking more of HBO’s “Game of Thrones” than beer. The commercial showed a character from the HBO series beating the Bud Knight in a joust, then killing him in no uncertain terms. Still, the publicity allowed Anheuser’s Bud Light to connect with viewers who, at the time, were eager to see the show’s final season.

Netflix has assembled a team that strives to build intriguing teams with advertisers keen to stretch their marketing muscles. In 2019, the company developed a partnership with Coca-Cola which paired the company’s flagship drink with ‘Stranger Things’ but prompted the beverage giant to temporarily relaunch New Coke, the much-scrutinized product that was languishing after its debut. in 1985.

“We’re always trying to find that creative interaction between the brand we could work with and the audience for big content,” said Magno Herran, head of marketing partnerships at Netflix, in an interview.

Executives had to work to sniff out the elements of a suitable alliance with Old Spice. Both parties found several references in “Witcher” to the smell of people. Simply put, some of the characters had obvious body odor (and some smelled of lilac).

Done well, says Herran, the marketing alliances play on themes that will interest fans of the series and get them talking. “It really speaks unique to the audience,” he adds.

Old Spice and Netflix have been working for about six months “to get the tone right,” he said, and to make sure the whole effort feels “genuine” to fans of the show. No matter how funky things get with the characters from “Witcher,” the hope is that consumers won’t bow their noses at this latest marketing argument.