Back to the Future of Advertising


Its #BackToTheFutureDay. The day that’s been 30 years in the making, is finally here.  At 4:28 PST Marty McFly, The Doc and Jennifer will arrive in some made up city in California to do something about their kids!

I’m Sergio Vargas, the newest Product Manager here at and I’m a HUGE Back to the Future fan.  Just last weekend I watched the first movie at Radio City Music Hall with a live symphony to play the score along with the movie.  Watching it got me thinking about brands and how they were used in the movies.

First and foremost is the DeLorean.  You can’t begin to talk about these movies without thinking about the time machine.  I’m 32, so I wasn’t really around when the car came out and started receiving all the bad reviews. All I know is that because of Back to the Future, I would totes buy one if give the chance and money.

Back to the Future II kicked things up a notch and had much more prominent product placement.  Obviously there are the self tying Nikes, which I’m still waiting for. Wait a tic…

Then some more less subtle references like when Marty goes into The Cafe 80s he asks for a Pepsi, by name.

It’s hard to fault the filmmakers here because using these products helped make the movie’s future within reach.  You got the feeling that maybe there was a chance we would have hoverboards (by Mattel) by now.  This trilogy’s legacy may end up being just how much they have done to bolster the products and brands it aligned itself with.  Back to the Future may keep inspiring advertising campaigns and products for many more years to come.  Case in point, here’s one that was released just this week for Toyota’s fuel cell car:

Today I wore my BTTF tshirt to work, will go to Best Buy to pick up the Back to the Future 30th Anniversary Blu Ray set, watch part 2 on my big screen TV (they def got that right) and hopefully I’ll be able to find a Pepsi Perfect.

Its evident that Dr Emmett Brown and Marty were and still are brand influencers.  Its not some new way to advertise, its the future.