Canned water start-up, Liquid Death, created a series of 100 custom skateboard decks using Tony Hawk’s blood as paint.
“Our Tony Hawk blood is harvested straight from the source,” the Liquid Death website reads, below a video of Hawk getting his blood drawn in a warehouse.
Did they go too far? Is this too much gore to actually make sales?
Apparently not. This wild partnership and marketing tactic proved to resonate with Liquid Death’s target audience, Gen Z and millennials, because the skateboards sold out in 20 minutes, retailing at $500 each.
Each deck comes with a certificate of authenticity and the blood is sanitized before being mixed with paint. Designer Will Carsola and screen printer Prime Skateboards helped bring the vision to life.
Ad agency Humanaut, the masterminds behind this concept, definitely pushed the boundaries with this project. But, it’s not off-brand for Liquid Death. To sign up for their exclusive perk club, you must “sell your soul.” Their site warns: “contract binding for all eternity.”
Hawk’s partnership with Liquid Death also featured nerve-wracking verbiage, stating that the contract will run “to the ends of the Earth and for the rest of time, including any applicable afterlife, reincarnation or similar post-mortal existence.”
A percentage of the skateboard profits benefit 5 Gyres, a non-profit which works to reduce plastic pollution, and The Skateboard Project, Hawk’s non-profit which builds skateparks for youth in underserved communities.
“I am deeply thankful to have a connection with my fans, and I appreciate how Liquid Death connects with theirs,” said Hawk. “This collaboration is taking those connections to a new level, as I have literally put my blood (and soul?) into these decks.”
This boundary-pushing campaign surely drew a new line for brands, mixing shock factor and creative strategy with a niche market. I, for one, am curious to see what’s next for Liquid Death.