The Snuggie blanket launched nationally on direct-response TV in October, just as the economy was slowing to a crawl, so the timing seemingly couldn’t have been worse. However, it turns out the timing couldn’t have been better.
The quirky little blanket with sleeves has become the raiment of the zeitgeist, with more than 4 million units sold in just over three months and more than 200 parody videos on YouTube.
[Scott Boilen, president of Allstar Marketing Group, Hawthorne, N.Y] said he’s heard reports of customers swamping stockers and grabbing all the Snuggies before they even reach the shelves at Bed, Bath & Beyond or Walgreens, the first two retailers to carry the blankets.
The timing worked well on many fronts for Snuggie. With conventional advertisers pulling back, remnant time for direct-response ads has swelled. And because apparel and other consumer-product sales are down, plenty of idle Chinese factories are eager for business.
Ads tout the Snuggie as a way to cut heating bills and let folks curl up on the sofa with their hands free. With a growing number of consumers hunkering down and looking to save money, two Snuggies and two book lights for $19.95 is starting to look like a pretty good deal.
And something about the Snuggie just matches the spirit of the times. “It’s a tremendous value in today’s tough economic times,” Mr. Boilen said. “In this type of economy, people are looking for a value, and this is certainly a value at the price point. … People are staying home more, and it makes them feel good.”
Is your life shrouded in a cold blue haze? Do arrows with $ symbols appear when you try to raise the thermostat? Is your blanket slightly too small? If so please join us, the Cult of Snuggie. There will be punch and pie.