Social Media and the Film Industry Brandon LeClair Garren Horne
Background• Simple Incorporation – During the height of MySpace’s popularity, movie studios offered free layout coding, trailers, and countdown clocks to put onto pages.• The Power of the Trailer – Trailers become a social media staple after Apple Trailers debuts and allows sharing. YouTube sharing sees a significant rise, support on MySpace and Facebook grows quickly• Facebook Pages – Pages, a feature incorporated into later versions of the Facebook layout, allows movie studios to create fan pages for films. Users can then “like” the movie to receive content updates, which they can, in turn, share with their friends
Active Social Media Markets• Facebook• Twitter• Eventful• YouTube• Google+• GetGlue
What is Eventful?• Eventful is: Eventful is a leading digital service connecting consumers with entertainment and live events.• Over 20 million people visit Eventful each month – Users can find activities to partake in, from movies, concerts, and sports to family fun and nightlife. Promoters can create their own events and share it with the Eventful community.• Demand It! – Eventful’s most successful feature – over 100,000 artists, comedians, filmmakers, studios use Demand It! to interact with fans and determine content and locations of performances.• Social Media Marketing Campaigns – Eventful maintains campaigns for artists, studios, filmmakers and more, including social networking, email, mobile, and more
What is GetGlue?• GetGlue is: A leading social entertainment destination where users check- in and share what they’re watching, listening to, reading, and playing.• Users earn rewards (usually stickers) for check in’s – Users can request real copies of their stickers once a month (in intervals of 30)• GetGlue is partnered with over 50 major entertainment companies – Including NBC Universal, Dreamworks, Sony, 20th Century Fox, ESPN, etc.
Why Do Studios and Filmmakers Use Social Media?• To provide commentary and insight into the project in real time (from production to release and beyond)• For promotional contests and sneak previews• Facilitating collaborative efforts with fans and undiscovered talents• To build hype and conversation about the movie• Transparency• Directing traffic to the movie website• Sharing news, press releases, etc.
How Effective is Social Media?• Box Office Profits show direct correlation to social media activity – The Most Popular Summer Blockbuster Movies in Social Media• The success of The Help• Making Avatar the most successful film of all time• Toy Story uses progressive media to reach an older audience
The Rise of Viral Marketing• Viral Marketing – Marketing techniques that use pre-existing social media outlets to increase brand awareness or achieve other objectives, typically spread by word-of-mouth through channels on the Internet. It may take the form of video clips, pictures, websites, Flash games, software, or text messages• Cloverfield – Released January 18 th, 2008 by Bad Robot, Cloverfield launched its viral campaign on July 1st, 2007 with a cryptic teaser trailer attached to Transformers. That day, the website 1-18-08.com launched, and featured still photographs (more being added at random intervals), giving clues to the movie.• Facebook Pages – The site began revealing pieces to a large-scale ARG (Alternate Reality Game) in the fall of 2007, including fake (yet extremely convincing) Facebook pages for all of the characters in the film, being updated in real time. MySpace pages were created as well.
Cloverfield• The title of the film was not confirmed until November 16th, 2007• Clues were implemented in ABC’s Lost, and NBC’s Heroes• Cloverfield went on to gross over $170 million nationally
Made by Social MediaCloverfield was one of the first films to havesuccess by promoting via social media, but in 2009, one film built a campaign entirely via the Internet, and in turn, created one of the most successful movies of all time.
Paranormal Activity• Filmed in 2007 for under $15,000, director Oren Peli teamed up with Eventful in August 2009 to create one of the most successful social marketing campaigns of all time• The film opened in 13 college towns on September 25th, 2009 – Audiences were encouraged to tell their friends about the movie, and get them to “demand it” in their city by visiting Eventful.com
Paranormal Activity• October 2nd, 2009 – Thanks to viewers in only 13 towns, and a single teaser trailer released quietly on YouTube, “Paranormal Activity” became a trending topic on Twitter, and the Eventful Demand It! page had received 75,000 requests. To accommodate the increasing demand, Paramount Independent quickly released the film to twenty additional major markets.• October 3rd, 2009 – 33 screenings in 20 markets sell out, Paramount Independent commits to releasing the film in an additional 40 markets the following Friday.• October 6th, 2009 – After receiving requests from virtually all markets nationwide, Paramount agrees to release the film nationwide if users can achieve one million unique “Demands” on Eventful.com
Paranormal Activity Just How Powerful is Social Media?On October 10th, 2009, the Eventful.comcounter hit one million requests (taking in over 400,000 in the initial 24 hours)Paramount releases Paranormal Activity nationwide on Friday, October 16th, 2009
Paranormal Activity• Paranormal Activity took the top box office spot for the weekend of October 16th by substantial margin• Over 1,500 markets (including Bangor) held special midnight screenings the first weekend, all of which sold out• Paranormal Activity went on to gross over $193 million domestically, making it one of the most commercially successful horror films of all time
Paranormal Activity• Sequels 2 & 3 – While Paranormal Activity’s legacy guaranteed its sequels a huge national release, Paramount Independent again chose to partner with Eventful.com (and their Facebook tie in application) to allow users to “demand” the film be screened in their city prior to the release.• Want to Host the Premiere? – The top vote-getter would host the official premiere of sequels 2 and 3, with the rest of the top ten receiving special screenings as early as a week before the wide release. Members of the cast and crew appeared in each city to hang out with fans, chat about the movies, and thank those who participated
Additional Social Media Successes• Grave Encounters – A 2011 Horror Film that used Eventful and Facebook to rack up “demands”. The film eventually garnered so much attention on the two outlets that Video On Demand providers for Time Warner Cable, Comcast, and DirectTV agreed to offer the movie to their customers because no major studio was willing to release the film domestically.• American Reunion – Playing directly into their target market, Universal Studios is relying solely on Facebook to promote the upcoming sequel to the American Pie franchise. Trailers have been released based on “likes”, and additional content is shared exclusively with fans prior to being made available on YouTube, Apple Trailers, etc.• Twitter Success – Jonah Hill (Superbad, Moneyball) recently took to Twitter to encourage his followers to find him new fans and help him surpass co- star Channing Tatum. If successful, Hill would “leak” the first trailer to he and Tatum’s upcoming film, 21 Jump Street.