Home > online marketing, technology > Run, zombies! Run to your nearest B&Q

Run, zombies! Run to your nearest B&Q

Here’s a great idea for a fun and social running app themed by Zombies via Kickstarter.com.  I like the idea that you get rewards and achievements for completing set runs in certain times.  I’ll be watching to see how it turns out as the possibilities are huge.

Ever since George A Romero’s seminal living dead series of movies (Night / Dawn / Day of the Living Dead), zombies have occupied a special place in peoples’ hearts and minds brains.  Of course, in the same way Steve Jobs didn’t invent the touchphone or tablet, Romero didn’t invent zombies – he just crystallised an existing concept.  In fact the idea of the living dead has existed in mythology as far back as ancient Persia and medieval China.

But before you write zombies off as just the domain of horror geeks – Michael Jackson’s Thriller, 28 Days Later and Brad Pitt in the upcoming World War Z show how mainstream the phenomenon is.

What exactly makes the zombie phenomenon so infectious is difficult to put a finger on.  Is it the hysteria surrounding communicable disease, the threat of enemy which can’t be killed (because they’re already dead), humans’ morbid fascination with cannibalism, the religious overtones in resurrection or simply the green light for gore?

Whatever it is Zombies are a marketeers dream.  The number of zombie movies in the last 30 years alone (hundreds according to Wiki), the massive zombie gaming genre, top trump cards, toys and fashion demonstrates that there’s money in them brain eaters.

However, the influence on popular culture extends well beyond a rather geeky sub-genre of entertainment.  They’re now being used to market DIY shops…

Westlake hardware stores located in seven US states have used the zombie concept to great effect.  You can select supplies for survival whether you’re still human or you’re already toast; there are pdf guides for zombie defence and zombie proofing, fake new reports, top tips for such things as zombie drywall damage repair and cross-links to products you’d never consider in the zombie apocalypse, but might just want now.  I can’t see this going on at B&Q or Homebase… but then again, we live on an island so have nothing to fear.

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