Some 350 million people around the globe are expected to tune-in for Kings Charles’ Coronation that kicks off at 8pm on Saturday AEST.
Impressive as the numbers are, it’s important to remember the Queen’s funeral managed a global TV audience of four billion, while the final of December’s FIFA World Cup pulled 1.5 billion eyeballs.
Since Charles ascended to the throne back in September, support from the Monarchy in the UK has actually dropped to just 44 per cent, while 25 per cent of Brits say they are indifferent to it, and 29 per cent stated they had a negative view.
Still, that’s not stopped a number of British brands from attempting to cash in, unveiling their very own Coronation-themed products.
Fabled British retailer Marks & Spencer expects to sell more than a million commemorative tea and shortbread tins, as well as 255,000 metres of its “Union Jack Coronation Bunting” for the thousands of street parties expected across the country.
Some in the family will cash in too. Carole Middleton, mother of the Duchess of Cambridge, is selling items through her Party Pieces company, including flag bunting at £4.99 ($A9.40) for three metres.
According to London research firm Hall & Partners, the success of any Coronation-themed brand is its ability to fly the nostalgia flag.
The agency’s research found that 81 per cent of Brits and 83 per cent of Americans said they enjoy things that reminded them of the past.
And 65 per cent responded in the affirmative when asked if they were more likely to buy from brands that they remember from their childhood. Younger generations, aged 16 to 34 years, were even more likely to do this (74 per cent in the UK and 70 per cent in the US).
Kurt Stuhllemmer, partner at Hall & Partners, said: “Invoking positive emotions with nostalgic marketing campaigns is a powerful way for brands to connect with people but should be used in moderation and with sensitivity to avoid coming across as outdated or tone-deaf.”
Anyway, in honour of Australia’s new King, here B&T presents the best (and possibly worst) of brands flying the Coronation flag. Check them out below:
McDonalds launches limited edition gold Coronation ring
Macca’s in the UK is getting into the Coronation spirit unveiling a competition that sees customers go into a draw for the chance to win one of 50 nine carat commemorative signet rings.
For the romantics among us, the ring comes with the Macca’s logo and the Royal Family’s insignia.
And it doesn’t stop there. The fast food chain will be lowering the cost of some menu items to help celebrate the big day, while it has also teamed up with the Philharmonic Orchestra to record a special Coronation version of its famous “I’m Lovin’ It” jingle.
Heinz launches ‘Kingchup’ commemorative tomato sauce
Planning on some hot chips to celebrate Australia’s new King? Well, condiments purveyor Heinz has got just the accompaniment – a specially named, limited edition ‘Kingchup’ tomato sauce.
Each bottle is numbered uniquely – making each of them one of a kind. According to Heinz, number one has been sent off to King Charles III himself.
“Based on previous demand for Heinz limited edition products, we expect these to sell out fast,” the company said in a statement. “If you want to be one of the few to get your hands on a bottle, you’ll have to be quick!”
Celebrations unveils monster chocolate Charles bust
Confectionery brand Celebrations has unveiled a life-size bust of King Charles III made entirely of chocolate. The tasty but meltable sculpture – which took a month to create and weighs over 23 kilos – was carefully constructed by chocolatier Jennifer Lindsey-Clarke using 3000 individual chocolates from Celebrations tubs.
“The team studied hours of footage of the King to capture his true likeness and the resemblance is uncanny,” Celebrations senior brand manager Emily Owen proudly delcared.
However, it remains unclear what fate awaits the cocoa-ladened King.
The Times plays the nostalgia card in new campaign
UK newspaper The Times and The Sunday Times are celebrating the Coronation with a new campaign highlighting the historic nature of the event.
Called “The wait is over”, the campaign shows a young Charles and reminds its readers that he’s actually been King-in-waiting for over 70 years.
“Our journalism provides everything people need to savour this special moment in history and our campaign aims to capture the sense of anticipation about the event,” The Times marketing director, Louise Agran said.
Grocer Tesco opens commemorative pop-up pub
Tesco is opening a pop-up pub in London’s Farringdon after temporarily re-naming a real pub, The Castle, as “The King in the Castle” for Thursday and Friday this week. The usual drinks will be served, as well as a trifle-inspired Bellini. All proceeds will go to The Prince’s Trust charity.
Meanwhile, in 60 participating Tesco stores, shoppers will be able to take a photograph and pose like a king on a gilded Tesco-branded throne while being served finger sandwiches, gin and tonic and other British food and drinks.
Artist makes portrait of King Charles out of Marmite on toast
An artist has “raised a toast” to the new King by creating a portrait of Charles’ face using 42 slices of white bread and a large jar of Marmite.
Nathan Wyburn, 33, an artist from Cardiff, said he wanted to celebrate Coronation week by using ingredients from the King’s favourite sandwich spread.
Wyburn said: “When I found out that the King himself actually loves Marmite as part of his favourite sandwich, that seemed even more fitting to know that he would totally approve of this.”
Uber unveils its own Coronation carriage
Ride share platform Uber is getting in on the Coronation action, getting its hands on a gold-plated carriage to ferry Charles fans around central London.
The company’s ‘Coronation Carriage’ will operate right up until Saturday’s big day at London green spot, Dulwich Park, with slots available to book via the Uber app.
Uber UK general manager Andrew Brem commented: “What better way to celebrate one of the most significant events of 2023 by riding like King Charles III in a horse drawn carriage. We’re always looking for new ways to add a little Uber magic to peoples journeys, so we are over the moon to be able to bring the Coronation Carriage to Uber.”
IKEA launch Coronation commemorative chicken meatballs
What better way to celebrate the King’s big day than from a bad dose of indigestion from IKEA.
In honour of Charles, the Swedish DIY store in the UK has rejigged its meatball recipe to reveal its Coronation chicken balls which appear to be meatballs with a curry-inspired sauce.
IKEA claim the recipe dates back to Queen Elizabeth’s Coronation back in 1953.
IKEA’s not actually selling them in its in-store restaurants, rather it’s encouraging Brits to make the dish for any accompanying street parties and the likes. Here’s the recipe below for anyone who’s possibly interested.
INGREDIENTS (serves 4-6)
For the chicken meatballs:
500g HUVUDROLL chicken meatballs or plant balls
For the Coronation sauce:
200g mayonnaise (or plant-based alternative)
100g Greek yoghurt (or plant-based alternative)
2 tbsp medium curry powder
2 heaped tbsp mango chutney
a pinch of cayenne pepper
1 tsp lemon juice
40g dried apricots, finely chopped
1 tbsp chopped coriander
Heat the balls (chicken or plant) in a frying pan with cooking oil at medium heat for 8–10 minutes, turning regularly.
Meanwhile, in a large bowl, mix the mayonnaise (or plant-based alternative), Greek yoghurt (or plant-based alternative), curry powder, mango chutney, cayenne pepper, lemon juice, sultanas and apricots. Season to taste and add more lemon juice if needed.
On a plate, layer the cooked meatballs on top of the sauce.
Sprinkle on coriander. Serve hot or cold, and enjoy!
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