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Posts Tagged ‘SAMCRO Edition’

Maisto “Sons of Anarchy” 1:18 Scale Bikes

Maisto “Sons of Anarchy” 1:18 Scale Bikes

There is now the Sons Of Anarchy collection of die-cast motorcycles.

Back in December, Maisto announced they worked closely with 20th Century Fox and Harley-Davidson to bring fans of the show 1:18 scale die-cast versions of the SOA motorcycles in association with the TV show characters: Jax, Clay, Opie and JT – the SOA Motorcycle Collection.

Not only can you now dress and ride like SOA outlaws, thanks to a flurry of licensing deals that includes everything from actual motorcycles at Bartel’s H-D to hats, games, stationary, jewelry, calendars, stickers, wall graphics and more.   Now while sitting in your work cube thinking about the winter cold you can have your very own die-cast outlaw motorcycle to stare at and think about how you can’t wait to ride in warmer weather!

The Maisto brand name was registered in 1990 by May Cheong, a vertically integrated manufacturer based in Hong Kong. The company has been manufacturing die cast replicas for over 40 years.  They have over 11,000 employees worldwide, and manufacturing facilities covering more than 2 Million square feet.

Sons Of Anarchy merchandise sales have grown 70% year-to-year since 2010.  This is not a U.S. only concept as the TV show is a hit in U.K., Australia, New Zealand, Germany and the Netherlands.  And with the TV show committed through a seventh season merchandise sales will only increase.

Previous SOA/H-D license deals blog post HERE.

Photo courtesy of Maisto, 20th Century Fox and Harley-Davidson.

All Rights Reserved © Northwest Harley Blog
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Limited edition Son’s of Anarchy motorcycles

I called this back in 2009 with a post called Bottling Ideas.  UPDATE: Actually now that I’ve re-scanned the blog it was even earlier with a post in 2008 called Harley SAMCRO Limited Edition Motorcycle HERE.

I’m talking about the FX television series “Son’s of Anarchy (SOA)“, and a new deal with Harley-Davidson for custom motorcycles made by 20th Century Fox Consumer Products as part of a flurry of licensing deals for SOA that includes clothing, leather jackets, hats, t-shirts, games, calendars, stationary and much more.

Thanks to Bartels’ Harley-Davidson the bike maker will produce 100 limited edition Son’s of Anarchy motorcycles that will retail for about $25,000 each at Harley dealers this fall.   Now TV viewers can further tap into the motorcycle club fantasy… who doesn’t want to pretend to be a ‘clubber’ and ride a faux outlaw biker motorcycle, right?

I can’t think of another TV show that cuts across multiple gender identities, social boundaries, is a taboo breaker, a mainstream manufactured product for the rebellious and the dispossessed.  If ever there was a Harley-Davidson brand ambassador it would be Kurt Sutter’s (@sutterink), Son’s of Anarchy!

SOA is about to enter its fifth season, and is now the most-watched show in its history among total viewers 18-49. The most recent season the show averaged 5.5 million viewers per episode. It was also the number three DVD release among TV shows in 2011.  And after growing online merchandise sales for FX’s top-rated show about 70 percent year-to-year since 2010, Fox is shifting to brick and mortar retailers like Spencer Gifts, Transworld/FYE and Hastings.

I wouldn’t be honest if I failed to mention that this feels like a disaster for any person who rides to a rally thinking they’ll have instant club admiration.  However, it could be shrewd marketing of misbehavior and we’ll see a formal offering from the motor company every year!  Any of the “noise” generated in the press and blogosphere helps in terms of show profile, helps H-D reinforce how the middle finger of rebellion built the brand.  And isn’t that all that matters in the end?!

I don’t have a Kurt Sutter man-crush, but he does deserve a big shout-out for remaining true to the setting in the TV show without becoming stereotypical.  We know it’s hard work compared to the Laffing Devils crap the Discovery Channel is trying to pass off as good TV.

Here are some previous SOA blog posts made over the years: OMG New Media Darlings; Men of MayhemBikes, Bullets & Brawls; Mail Room of LifeBottling Ideas; Be Good & You’re Lonely; Sutter Shout Out; Season 3 IdeasWorking The SOA Trail

Photo courtesy of SOA and RatRodStudios.com.

All Right Reserved © Northwest Harley Blog

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Happy New Years!

Now that the champagne toasts are made and the ball dropped, it’s time to start thinking ahead:  What’s your riding resolution for this year?  Will you ride your motorcycle more often to work?  Take that epic journey or stay close to home?  Will you buy a new ride or enhance the existing one?

Before going forward let’s take a quick look back.

Over the years I’ve posted the occasional summary of the more popular and least liked stories from the past 12 months.  It’s not my “helper-monkey”, but the good folks at WordPress.com state their rankings algorithm is based on how many people read a particular article.  The average is the sum of views divided by the number of days and its gets even more complex if you are the sort of person who likes to verify computations.  I don’t.

The final tallies can be a little mystifying, to be honest.

Are readers giving a “thumbs-up” because they liked the content of the article or just the topic itself?  I don’t find these summaries a really useful exercise because some of the better written articles (IMHO) will sometimes have the fewest views.  It’s the old adage that writing about or reposting the nip slips, exposed undies and ever-presence dysfunction from the celebrity train wrecks for the whole world to see will bring a whole lot more views if that’s your goal.  But, if nothing else, the summary does provide a snapshot of what struck in my readers’ collective fancy during the past year.

In 2011, I posted 88 new articles (about 7 per month).  That brought the total archive on this blog up to just over 800 posts.  I uploaded 165 pictures (or about 3 per week).  The busiest day was September 25th (during the Vagos and HAMC shooting in Reno) with 1,120 views on an article I posted in 2008 (HERE).  Clearly the social behavior and the attraction of the events in Reno was a big draw, but I’m mystified why the more current article (HERE) had fewer views?  Maybe it’s a SEO thing.  I also want to provide a shout-out to the large number of UK viewers who consistently visit the blog.

Here are the 2011 most viewed highlights:

Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs Flying Colors in Oregon
OCC Family Feud Ends
Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs Are New Media Darlings
Vagos MC Meeting In Grants Pass
Harley SAMCRO Limited Edition Motorcycle
Harley-Davidson’s SwitchBack
Vintage Motorcycles – Honda CB750
Harley Engine History
“Green Nation” Busts On Saint Patrick’s Day
No Angel
The Day Laughlin River Run Changed
Men Of Mayhem
A “Legend Bell” Full of Mystery
Harley Snubbed In Benjamin Button Movie
Operation Black Rain Nets Oregon Mongols

I enjoyed this past year—and I hope you have, too.  If I’ve done my “job” right as editor of this blog, then your visits will have helped make your motorcycle hobby a bit more meaningful.  Hopefully you’ve become closer to your motorcycle and grown your relationship with friends that you’ve met on the road.

Happy 2012!

Photo’s courtesy of WordPress.com and Northwest Harley Blog.

All Rights Reserved © Northwest Harley Blog

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SOA FXD Dyna Superglide

SOA FXD Dyna Superglide

I was flipping TV channels last night and landed on FX during a commercial.

Nothing so special about that… WAIT… they’re advertising a Sons of Anarchy custom Harley-Davidson FXD Dyna Superglide motorcycle with a Custom Reaper paint job!

THAT… idea seems very familiar.  Sure enough, I blogged last year about how H-D marketing ought to consider developing a SAMCRO Limited Edition motorcycle and now they are doing it.

I don’t know if Eagle’s Nest Harley-Davidson (13900 Harlan Road, Lathrop, CA) saw the post and acted on my idea, but they indeed developed a promotional giveaway campaign with the SOA producers and created a unique branding tie in to the television show.  In my view, that’s creative marketing!  Or rather its good strategic co-branding/partnering with the right ingredients that make sense for the manufacturer and producer.   Kudo’s H-D!

Before you haters get tripped up on this idea and launch a barrage of poser comments…  Let’s maintain perspective here as the “Reaper” bike is like co-branding NASCAR merchandise.  It’s an “ingredient brand” motorcycle that will appeal to enthusiasts who like and/or identify with the show.  Think about the Indianapolis 500 and the Indy 500 themed or co-branded pace cars with GM.  Just because you wear a race t-shirt and drive a 1989 Pontiac Trans-Am Pace Car does not make you an Indy 500 race car driver!

I’m sure anyone who rides the “Reaper Bike” knows who they are and what they are about and wouldn’t pass themselves off as a club affiliated biker.

Photo courtesy of SOA web site.

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dear_santaWith Christmas fast approaching, I thought it was a perfect time to ask Santa to grant some of my motorcycle wishes. Here’s what I want this holiday season: 

  1. Santa, please save Harley-Davidson from the economic meltdown. I want Harley, the key American motorcycle manufacture and underdog, to overcome all of its issues and be restored to the high-flying innovative motorcycle manufacture it once was. I long for bigger blocks, tight cylinder liners, tight head gaskets, 4 valves per jug, liquid-and-air-cooled, more HP, more torque and fewer problems. A $55 stock price would be nice too.
  2. Put an end to those Japanese-Harley clones. Japanese manufactures: stop trying to copy Harley and instead come up with your own breakthrough cruiser that delivers a superb motorcycle riding experience. Even better, make sure your engines sound flawlessly “Harley-like” on the American highway system before you debut them.
  3. Help Harley’s SAMCRO motorcycle vision come true. I know there are a lot of naysayers that doubt an OMC vision of a limited edition motorcycle launch will come to fruition, but I’d like to see it happen. I think this savvy idea could challenge traditional branding business models and create much more buzz in the competitive co-branding market.
  4. Help Harley win an exclusive product placement in Ben Affleck’s film about Arizona Republic journalist Don Bolles. He was killed in 1976 while working on a story about political corruption and organized crime. Rumor is Clooney will be lead and he rides motorcycles!
  5. Help reduce the number of federally protected gray wolves shot in Wisconsin by Harley hunters during deer season.
  6. Please, please, please help Harley marketing. The “sex sells” strategy with Marisa Miller is not working. Emotions are clouding their judgment.
  7. Hold the line on Summerfest beer prices. A recession is no time to raise beer prices and we need to keep the “suds” charges low.
  8. Lastly, please provide riders prolonged exposure to the wind so that all may find extended periods of uncontrolled euphoria.

My list may not be long, but my wishes aren’t going to be easy to grant. I hope Santa has some business-savvy elves ready to buckle down and work on my list. Let’s not stop there — send your wish list or comments below.

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soa_wingFor a company that has been around since the dawn of time Harley has been most successful in what’s called “licensed lifestyle” items.  You’ve seen all the pet products, footwear, jewelry, under garments, furniture, Burger King toys, and other companion products which promote or extend to items that people use as a badge of identifying themselves with the Harley brand.  Some might argue that Harley could win the “Motorcycle Whore Award” for the brand that has most “sold out” and sticks their logo on about anything.  Remember the Harley-Davidson cake-decorating kit made available in baking stores and on web sites?  It was licensed by Bakery Crafts.

hd_icing_kitI’ve written previously about Harley’s brand promise and their movie product placements.  They have had a number of successes, but that cake-decorating kit was bad, illogical and a case of product dissonance between the companies core identity and how to reach untapped markets.  It diluted the brand.

But we live in an age of relentless co-branding so, what should Harley do?  I suggest they leverage the success of the TV show Son’s of Anarchy and launch a co-branded SAMCRO Edition Motorcycle.  Make it a limited edition “Reaper Crew” model specializing in the club paint theme and graphics.  This embraces the free spirited and rebellious associations of the Outlaw Motorcycle Club while nurturing family relationships that maintain a loyal motorcycle community.  A core identity for Harley.  As a bonus they could throw in a DVD set of Season #1, a wallet cheat sheet of the biker language and club terminology, a unique skull-head key FOB and maybe even a t-shirt!   We’ll talk about SAMCRO cologne later!

There is precedence (Clapton/Fender, Jordan/Nike, BMW/007) for a product and “sell-lebrity” co-branding and the key to any brand extension is make sure it connects with what people love most about the brand. 

A SAMCRO Edition motorcycle might be just the ticket.  What do you think?  Would you consider buying a SAMCRO Edition motorcycle from Harley-Davidson?

Photos courtesy of FX Networks and Bakery Crafts web site.

All Rights Reserved © Northwest Harley Blog

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