2009 PRO Awards: AC/DC Album Launch

Posted on by Chief Marketer Staff

Agency: Arnold Worldwide
Client: Walmart

Walmart wanted to make a big splash for AC/DC’s new Black Ice release, their first studio album in eight years. They agreed to sell the CD exclusively at Walmart, along with exclusive rights to the AC/DC LIVE Rock Band Track Pack and assorted AC/DC apparel and merchandise.

To attract a wide audience and build on the band’s cross-generational appeal, they created an experiential mini-shop in 3,000 Walmarts. Located in the apparel section to promote cross-sales, they featured Rock Band video gaming units to test out the new AC/DC track pack game. They were merchandised with Black Ice CDs and apparel, and additional promotions from partners Sony, Pepsi, Doritos, Amp and Sirius.

A mobile tour was used to generated buzz in Los Angeles and New York. Black Ice Cream trucks were outfitted with the new CD and listening stations for both the game and the CD starting at midnight on the release date. Angus Young lookalikes emceed the events and built excitement for the chance to win concert tickets and merchandise giveaways. National TV, network radio, online, out-of-home, pop-up retail and Walmart in-store channels were used to market the products.

PR reached nearly 137 million people and generated more than 3,000 media placements. During the campaign period, nearly 2 million CDs were sold and Black Ice was the first AC/DC album ever to debut at No. 1 and was the highest selling debut album in Sony and Columbia history.

Return to the list of 2009 Pro Awards winners.


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