AS: Star Wars advertising

Target’s latest campaign from Deutsch L.A. is a two-minute celebration of children’s love for Star Wars. While it’d be easy to take a cynical view of the spot—that Target and Lucasfilm are exploiting or pandering to our emotional connections with the franchise—the reality is that the spot simply works.

“Target has played a role in bringing Star Wars to life since the franchise began in 1977, when we were all introduced to a galaxy ‘far, far away’ with thrilling adventures and battles between good and evil,” said Rick Gomez, senior vp of marketing for Target. “We’re excited to bring an innovative experience to our guests for what will inevitably be the biggest pop culture moment of 2015.”

The retailer also created an online site, “Share the Force,” which Target is calling (of course) a “galaxy” of memories that is expanded daily by contributions from some of Star Wars’ estimated 147 million fans. The memories, shared as photos from social networks like Facebook or Instagram, will be permanently archived at Lucasfilm.

The site links back to Target where fans are then able to purchase various exclusive Star Wars merch, with items landing on “Force Friday,” Sept. 4. 

“We looked at the landscape of what people are doing around Star Wars and we realized that people are talking about the film and [the merchandise] but what no one was really walking about was this huge emotional connection that we all have to [the merchandise],” said Janet Higdon, creative director at Deutsch L.A.

“Star Wars is really special in that people love [the merchandise] as much, if not more, than the film,” she said. “Star Wars is one of the only properties where you can hold up that vintage lunch box and people have an emotional connection.”