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“Entourage” seasons 7 & 8 featured a long-arc storyline based around Turtle brokering deals around a new-to-the-market tequila called Avión. The storyline involved Mark Cuban, Vince’s pornstar girlfriend, and a girl way out of Turtle’s league. It eventually ended with Turtle as a multi-millionare. Note: I understand that “Entourage” was a stupid show. I watched every episode and the movie. Don’t @ me.
Along the way, Avión received an amazing amount of product placement and buzz from the show. It was a new kind of marketing that led to huge growth for the company.
The most amazing thing is that Avión paid nothing for the attention.
On this week’s Dudes Doing Business podcast, we talk about the business of spirits with Avión Tequila’s Marty Williams. Marty tells us his compelling personal story from Australia to Penn State to working for a Mexican company in New York City. We dig deep into the tequila business, from harvesting plants, to distribution, to marketing strategy.
Marty also tells about how Avión landed the “Entourage” placement. It involved a Nantucket hot tub meeting between Avión’s founder Ken Austin and “Entourage” creator Doug Ellin. Ellin told Austin about how he was looking to turn Turtle from a stoned loser into a winner in the upcoming season. Austin told Ellin about the tequila. The rest is television history.
Avión got a ton of attention and brand awareness from the show, but it also created new challenges for the company. Marty tells us about how Avión explained to the world that the tequila wasn’t owned by Cuban (or Turtle), wasn’t a fake made-for-tv product, and wasn’t a flash in the pan.
Check out the episode, subscribe on iTunes, and follow Marty and Avión on twitter at @mlwil4 and @TequilaAvion.
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