"...The shows marketing team came up against a challenge to which they needed to change the demographics of their natural young audience and allow the show to reach a bigger audience. They decided to launch an integrated event level marketing campaign which consisted of explaining the back story (Prequel to the series) of the vampires and how they actual interact with society, living off their synthetic blood. They undertook an extensive viral marketing /alternate reality game campaign through the use of Bloodcopy.com. They utilised all available platforms to generate wide scale awareness, in order to get an audience early, and a solid, loyal audience. They were on Twitter, facebook, You Tube, and created a myspace account called ‘Blood’. They had online forums set up through HBO, Blood Copy, leaving messages and videos for people to see. One was an exclusive interview with Samson the Vampire. Some people even received plastic syringes with synthetic blood. They set up multiple websites, encoding web addresses into unmarked envelopes. They sent these out via post targeting high profile blog writers and others. HBO.com began selling the Tru Blood carbonated drink on September 19th 2009.
The shows marketing team created Breaking news stories, creating hype over the vampires and the synthetic blood. News segments were coming from the president, and department head authorities. HBO premiered two documentaries, entitled True Bloodlines. There were bus shelter and telephone booth advertising posters, banners, and billboards placed around the cities in the US. They had articles in magazines showing that the tru blood bottles had sold out, showing vampires drinking the product. They even placed cards in vending machines, indicating they had sold out of the tru blood. They used the New York Times newspaper, Rolling Stones Magazine, Los Angeles Times, Advertising Age etc to create hype and articles on the show. They even created a Vampires rights debate about whether or not people wanted them living in their neighbourhood. The American Vampire League was created to support the vampires rights. They ran several campaigns using the main stars in the show talking to presenters about the audience online as if they were being realistically interviewed. They gave out thousands of DVDs of the first show to attendees at the special Midnight Madness film festival. Blockbuster also provided free rental of the first show that was watermarked. In the second season of True Blood, the campaign created fake ads for real brands...."