The Icecreamists. Agents Of Cool. And Marketing Savvy.
For many people, really good ice cream is akin to sex. For the Icecreamists, ice cream IS sex. And fashion. And music. And all things hip.
A self-proclaimed revolution in ice cream, the new brand is dripping in trendy imagery, graffiti-like fonts, scantily clad semi-goth models, edgy ice cream accoutrements and witty taglines and quotes. Clever flavor names, trendy graphics, downloadable wallpapers - even t-shirts and a pendant of their logo - are a part of a marking effort that parallels that of a new movie release.
At present they are hyping their 'guerilla' or 'pop-up' store event named "God Save The Cream" in the basement of Selfridges this September, with an appropriately alluring flavor called The Sex Pistol (for the 18+ crowd only).
above: the Sex Pistol will be available at Selfridges beginning September 10th through November 1st.
The custom creation is an ice cream cocktail served with a shot of Absinthe. It contains such trendy energy and libido-inducing ingredients as ginkgo, biloba, arginine and guarana as well as a bit of Viagra®. Customers are limited to one serving per person, who must be 18 or older.
As you can imagine, this is the stuff that bloggers and PR people dream about.
Matt O’Connor, founder of The Icecreamists, says: “This is the perfect après shopping treat. Just one Sex Pistol will leave you feeling energised and confident – but please, don’t pester the staff!”
Although the Sex Pistol is getting lots of press, they offer tons more delectable items. Reading their menu made me drool. Their boutique ice creams are more like gelato, with only 6% fat and less air (35% as opposed to 150%). Their yogurts are offered with exotic fruit toppings and they have concoctions like champagne ice pops and ice cream sandwiches.
above: topless women donning thigh high black leather boots and dripping with melted ice cream sit in silver caned thrones compete with crowns and scepters all over their website.
In their own words:
The Icecreamists offers a unique experience for aficionados of freshly-made Boutique Ice Creams, Pure Frozen Yogurts and Ubercool Shakes. We hope pleasure seekers everywhere will enjoy the intoxicating allure of white alchemy as much as we enjoyed creating this new creed in consummate cool. The Icecreamists.
above: fresh fruits top their yogurts and champagne ice pops are among their unique treats
above: Ice cream sandwiches in addition to their premium ice creams are offered
The Icecreamists welcome fashionistas, bon vivants, raconteurs, troubadours, revolutionaries, disgraced politicians and lonely housewives.
above: Ice Cream cocktails Obamarama and Obamarama(At The White House)
Icecreamist: (adjective if using to describe) A person or persons addicted to or obsessed with ice cream. An extreme ice cream fanatic. Can be highly addictive and infectious.
Icecreamism: (Noun) A term used to define people suffering from an addiction to or obsession with ice cream.
The Icecreamists are anti mono-culture and ‘McWorld’ and celebrate diversity through creativity and the currency of ideas.
above: cryogenic cocktails frozen at -196°C and varous ice creams will be available at Selfridges for a limited time
Saving The World From Meltdown
In an age of pandemics, epidemics, foreign wars, global meltdowns and MP’s expenses, what’s left to believe in? The Icecreamists offer hope and consolation in the face of darkening economic skies and a dystopian society. An undimmed faith in the restorative power of pure, fresh boutique ice cream to soothe your soul and heal your anxieties. The Icecreamists is communal, spiritual and political, with a power to reach out and bring people together regardless of race, colour and creed.
above: T-shirts and a sterling silver pendant cast of their logo are offered at their online store.
Below is a reprint of an interesting article about the brand's launch from Marketing Magazine:
Breaking the mould: The Icecreamists
As one of the founders of the fathers' rights group Fathers 4 Justice, Matt O'Connor is no stranger to stirring things up. The organisation achieved the kind of publicity money cannot buy with eye-catching stunts ranging from pelting Tony Blair with condoms full of purple flour during Prime Minister's Questions to a protester dressed as Batman scaling Buckingham Palace. These activities put O'Connor on the front pages and landed him in some tense and challenging situations.
However, the veteran campaigner is on a new mission. While bringing fresh artisanal Italian gelato to the British public might appear frivolous when compared with winning rights for fathers, O'Connor is just as serious about it. He also claims that his latest objective chimes with his idealism, joking that he wants to liberate the world ‘one lick at a time'.
Next month, O'Connor is launching The Icecreamists ice-cream brand. Created by gelato master Roberto Lobrano and with its first store opening inside the Selfridges department store in London, the brand's stated aim is to become the ‘Hard Rock Café of the ice-cream world'. The store concept will include a house band and a cinema.
above: rendering of store interior
As creative director of Frederick's, the ice-cream producer licensed to manufacture Cadbury and Del Monte products, O'Connor is hitting the market from a position of strength. He says the difference between genuinely fresh ice cream and the mass-produced version is huge. He points out that fresh ice cream has a lower fat content and a completely different texture. O'Connor has been involved in every aspect of the business from the product development to branding and marketing.
‘There is no challenger brand in the market any more,' he says, referring to the dominance of Unilever's Ben & Jerry's brand. O'Connor accuses other manufacturers of suffering from a ‘poverty of imagination' that The Icecreamists aims to address.
Members of The Icecreamists' brand team are creating their varieties from scratch, travelling to Bologna in Italy to source the ingredients and coming up with a seasonal menu. O'Connor characterises the proposition as ‘boutique ice cream' and says he pays close attention to provenance and quality.
The brand, which is aimed primarily at 18- to 25-year-old women, will be backed with irreverent, ‘punk' marketing. Flavours will be launched in two collections - a spring/summer range focused on lighter fruits and an autumn/winter line skewed toward richer chocolate flavours.
O'Connor is relishing the freedom of operating without brand guidelines and supermarkets' prescriptive margins.
Frederick's recently launched its own brand, Antonio Federici Gelato Italiano, with some racy ads, including one depicting a priest and a nun that was banned by the ASA. However, it must tread carefully with its more mainstream licensed brands.
‘The supermarkets have defined views on category space, and some of the big players have strangled the space,' he says. ‘Bringing new things to market that people haven't tried before is a leap of faith and there is no middle ground.'
The team is also looking at sites in areas such as London's Covent Garden, and aims to open stores in New York and other cities. ‘There is no doubt that things are very tough in the UK at the moment. People are looking for a smile and we are offering them a bit of sunshine,' says O'Connor. ‘We are going to make Heston Blumenthal look like Ronald McDonald by the time we have finished,‘ he adds.
The Icecreamists TM is a registered trademark.
All images courtesy of the Icecreamists and their website by Contrast Creatives