Domo, the fuzzy brown creature from Japan with a trademark enigmatic open-mouth expression, is taking 7-Eleven stores by storm this fall.
From collectible Slurpee cups filled with Fuji Frost by Fanta, and flocked Slurpee character straws to Big Bite hot dog containers, coffee cups and even an exclusive Domo Attack! Energy drink, Domo will have 7-Eleven customers seeing brown, interrupted by red and sharp white teeth.
Created by Japanese illustrator and director Tsuneo Goda as the mascot for Japanese public television station NHK in 1998, Domo has a unique look and personality that quickly catapulted the character into one of the Internet’s biggest sensations. Domo has achieved pop culture super-status through user-generated content and thousands of viral videos on popular Web sites like YouTube, Facebook and Flickr.
“Fuji Frost has a sweet red-apple taste, which is a tongue-in-cheek choice since apples are the one food Domo doesn’t like,” said Jay Wilkins, 7-Eleven category manager for proprietary cold beverages. “Because Domo loves Slurpee drinks and appears everywhere in our stores, theoretically Fuji Frost Slurpee drinks are Domo-proof.” Fuji Frost is named for Mount Fuji, Japan’s most well-known landmark.
A new three-part Webisode, which can be viewed exclusively online at www.slurpee.com and www.domonation.com, tells the story of Domo and his friends on a quest for a Slurpee beverage. Each of the 30-second segments will debut weekly on the two Web sites starting Oct. 1. The stop-action animated Domo video was created and produced exclusively for 7-Eleven by dwarf inc., the Japanese animation company that originally created Domo and all his friends.
Collectible cups feature Domo and his furry sidekicks enjoying Slurpee drinks and one showing Domo experiencing a Brainfreeze. A tiny flocked Domo character is affixed to premium Slurpee straws, selling for $1.99. From hip hop to wrestling themes, each of the four Slurpee straws features Domo sporting a different costume and accessories.
Coffee and Big Bite hot dogs, two of 7-Eleven’s best-selling proprietary items, also are getting into the spirit of Domo, as a limited offering through Nov. 15. To reach younger coffee drinkers, 7-Eleven is offering coffee in a special brown Domo cup for just 99 cents. Store signage promoting the coffee deal urges customers to “Obey the Domo.” Likewise, the Big Bite hot dog also will retail for 99 cents and be served in a cardboard “clam-shell” carrier resembling Domo’s face, with the mouth opening to reveal the food.
“You won’t be able to go to a 7-Eleven store in October and miss Domo,” Wilkins said. “We’ve let Domo fans know he’s coming with notices on Facebook and Twitter, and the online buzz about his 7-Eleven debut has already been building.”
A larger-than-life Domo candy display will feature Snicker’s and Reese’s candy bars in the open mouth of the character as well as a shelf to display Domo DVDs ($15.99), where available. Collectibles like Domo Qee miniature action figures in cup-like packaging ($9.99), Domo Manga comic books ($3.99), plush characters and apparel, like caps and T-shirts are also available. 7-Eleven has even emblazoned special-edition gift cards with Domo’s likeness. Domo is also front and center on much of the in-store product signage and storefront banners.
Big Tent Entertainment, the marketing and licensing company behind Domo, helped broker the deal with 7-Eleven. “Because Domo has such a hugely devoted, cult-like following among kids, teens and young adults, we believe he’s a perfect match for 7-Eleven and its iconic Slurpee brand,” said Big Tent CEO Rich Collins. “7-Eleven has created some very cool collectible items that will have Domo fans and Slurpee drinkers alike coming back for more.”