Bond keeps marketing to the 1% (maybe 0.5%)

The “old days”: Affordable James Bond lunchbox seen around U.S. school yards, circa 1965-66

If you’re not among the 1 percent — maybe the 0.5 percent — then the James Bond film franchise doesn’t really care about you.

The latest offering from the 007 store is a James Bond backgammon set costing 4,895 British pounds (about $6,040).

Here’s a description:

Introducing a backgammon board worthy of James Bond. The 007 Bespoke Backgammon Set is hand built for champions and aficionados by the world-renown Geoffrey Parker, the backgammon championship board supplier of choice. Individually handmade to order, each set has a unique three digit number – which 00 will you be?

If you’ve got the money, perhaps you can play a game of backgammon while you sit in your Aston Martin DB5 replica that the car company is selling for more than $3 million each.

Of course, those replicas aren’t street legal, so you can’t drive them anywhere unless you haul them to a race track that you can afford to rent.

That’s not exactly marketing to the masses.

Bond became a phenomenon in the 1960s. Kids took their (affordable) lunch boxes to schools. Parents bought (affordable) puzzles and games for their children. All of that hooked future generations of Bond fans.

Today? Not so much. Many studios use forums such as the San Diego Comic Con as a big marketing platform. It’s seen as a way to market to young people. Not the Bond franchise.

Eon Productions briefly (1994 and 1995) held a fan convention as the franchise revived as the 1989-95 hiatus ended.

Since then? Forget it. Bond is all about the 1 percent, maybe even the 0.5 percent.

Well, that’s how it goes.

UPDATE (Oct. 4, 2019): Bollinger has its own offerings for the 1 percent. Details below from a press release.

Bollinger Tribute to Moonraker Luxury Limited Edition

Moonraker, released forty years ago, featured James Bond whose mission took him on an outer space adventure. It was also the movie on which the Bond and Bollinger partnership began. To celebrate their 40 year partnership, Champagne Bollinger and 007 pay tribute to their shared heritage and revisit the space shuttle created by legendary production designer Ken Adam. Champagne Bollinger enlisted designer Eric Berthes to re-imagine the Moonraker space shuttle. Crafted from pewter and wood veneer, encasing a Saint Louis crystal ice bucket and a magnum of Bollinger 2007, the Bond vintage par excellence. Each numbered piece has been crafted and finished by hand, making it unique. Limited edition of 407 copies. RRP £4,500.

That’s about $5,500.

The Bollinger 007 Limited Edition Millésimé 2011

To mark the release of the upcoming movie No Time To Die, the 25th instalment of the James Bond series, the House has created a limited edition wine dedicated to 007, with a 2011 vintage inspired by the world of Bond. The jet-black 75cl bottle is adorned with the number “25”, formed from the titles of the previous films, which are similarly etched on the glass of the wooden box. The 2011 vintage, an atypical year, inspired Cellar Master to produce a unique champagne, created entirely from Pinot Noir from the Grand Cru village of Aÿ, where the House was first established in 1829. This is the first time that both the vintage and village have been used exclusively by Bollinger to make a dedicated wine. The excellent 2011 harvest in Aÿ, produced complex, powerful and harmonious Pinot Noirs, fully expressed in this characterful wine. RRP £150.

That’s about $184.

4 Responses

  1. I think spy Commander has a point here, the Real James Bond Fans has become a Elite Community. the Franchise is not really interested in who is or who isn’t it’s about keeping Tradition alive. and if you Believe in this as a Bond Fan that’s ok for the Franchise, the reason why this is my opinion, Why only produce a Limited amount of Aston Martin DB5’s for only a small amount of Elite Billionaires and not a reissue for the public at large ?

  2. I feel like in the Barbara Broccoli/Michael Wilson era, retail products other than product placement has never really been a focus. They’ll throw out the occasional nugget, like video games and the Funko POPs, but so much is, as you said, targeted to the upper crust. You’re never gonna keep the franchise going if kids don’t get into it at some point, and even the Lego set they made is a couple hundred bucks.

  3. Looking around the 007 Store, there’s still a reasonable selection of affordable items. I tend to view the high-end stuff as ‘aspirational’ for those of us currently without the means. It’s probably wise of the license holders not to flood the market with a lot of cheap junk too.

  4. Obviously there’s a Blofeld in the marketing office determined to erase general interest in 007.

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