The Hellacious Marketing Campaign Behind MTN DEW’s Flamin’ Hot Flavor
When MTN DEW released its limited-edition Flamin’ Hot soft drink in August, it sold out within minutes online. The PepsiCo-owned beverage brand knew that because of its popularity, they would bring back Flamin’ Hot, a soda described as sweet with a spicy aftertaste, full time. Wanting to build excitement around the relaunch, the Knoxville, Tennessee-based brand planned a sizzling all-day party in the “hottest” place around: Hell—Hell, Michigan, that is.
Held on April 30, MTN DEW collaborated with public relations agency Golin New York and production company Motive, to host To Hell With MTN Dew Flamin’ Hot.
Hell, a small, unincorporated town with a population of just 72 in 2020, has selected Flamin’ Hot as its “official” beverage. The event received so much attention online that some 8,000 guests showed and had to be turned away due to capacity and thus safety reasons. Celebrity guests included DJ Pauly D, borne from MTV’s reality TV show Jersey Shore and chef turned rapper and celebrity Action Bronson, who played a two-hour set.
To build excitement ahead of the event, MTN DEW released a Flamin’ Hot collection, featuring apparel with fiery motifs. Here are three of the products, which fans can still purchase in MTN DEW’s online store.
The Flamin’ Hot Red Is The New Black Tee is a standard-fit, unisex tee, featuring a pocket on the left chest. Embellishments utilize the pocket in its design, with the MTN DEW Flamin’ Hot logo printed on the pocket face and a demon graphic poking out of the pocket.
The “Caution: Heat Ahead” Flamin’ Hot Hoodie features customization from the tip of the hood to the bottom of the sweatshirt. With a dynamite motif, branding is featured on the sleeve and back (shown above), as well as the side of the hood. A demon graphic, created to market the beverage, is shown carrying a torch along the bottom. The hood’s interior features a bold, allover print—but the sweatshirt is bold all around.
If the tee and hoodie are too daring, then the Flamin’ Hot Socks offer a “milder” way to show support for the Flamin’ Hot beverage. Available in one-size-fits-most, these socks feature an allover knit print with the Flamin’ Hot logo featured front and center.