Need for Speed Marketing Campaign
By Megan Robinson
There are different ways a film can be promoted such as radio interviews and advertising and T.V. shows. The
decision to use a particular style of marketing may depend on the target audience and demographic. For
example, a T.V. show maybe more successful because it is very visual and has an immediate impact. On ‘Need
for Speed’ the marketing campaign was quite large including all the below:
• Absolute Radio: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iegrFqgGG3k
• E3: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yMgJbdly1_I
• Graham Norton: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b03wxt98
• IGN: http://uk.ign.com/videos/2014/03/12/aaron-paul-plays-need-for-speed
• Jimmy Kimmel:
Part 1 - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7HJup5V6qA4
Part 2 - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4yLgTs13NN0
• Radio 1: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p01sz9n4
• Radio 1Xtra - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vko_5p-1UJ4
• Top Gear: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4OjfH_LbyHY
• WWE Raw: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8UEu0lwXfcA
The film Need For Speed uses cross media convergence, which is where different media platforms are
converted together to promote a film. This is why there are different media platforms used above for Need For
Top Gear is a British television series about motor vehicles, particularly cars. It
appeals to people in their late 20’s and above who would watch BBC 2. It is
broadcast throughout the world in 170 different countries and reaches 350
million viewers. On 2nd March 2014, Aaron Paul was featured on the
programme and used to promote the film, ‘Need for Speed’. It is clever
marketing to use a programme about cars to advertise a film that is about
cars and speed as it will relate to the target audience more.
The Graham Norton Show
Aaron Paul was a guest on ‘The Graham Norton Show’ on 28th February 2014. He was
there to talk about ‘Breaking Bad’ which has attracted a wide audience and has been
acclaimed as one of the greatest TV dramas of all time. He was also promoting his new
film, ‘Need For Speed’. ‘The Graham Norton Show’ is on BBC One at 22:35 for about
an hour so it is most likely going to attract a very wide ranging audience of young
adults to middle-aged adults. People who watch ‘The Graham Norton Show’ know
that the celebrities will be trying to promote recent films, shows, music. ‘Need For
Speed’ was promoted on this show because Aaron Paul is a very popular actor has had
success with ‘Breaking Bad’ already. People watching will be very interested in
knowing about his new film. Also the show was aired in late February and the film was
going to be released two weeks later so it is still fresh in people’s minds and they will
be looking out for it at the cinema.
The most successful I feel from the two marketing campaign I have discussed
is ‘The Graham Norton Show’ because they can reach out to wider audiences
than ‘Top Gear’ audiences. Also ‘Top Gear’ is more about cars and the reason
Aaron Paul is on it is ‘Need For Speed’ is about cars and they did talk about
the cars on ‘Breaking Bad’. I think ‘The Graham Norton Show’ is more
successful as he brings out the best in people and makes them look good.
Also he invited Ant & Dec, Jaime Dornan from ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’, Naomi
Campbell and Ellie Goulding on that particular show. They are all very popular
and people will still watch it even if they haven’t heard of Aaron Paul. This is
very clever marketing. Graham Norton encourages his guests to discuss films
and shows, music together and so also makes the audience involved. There is
also lots of humour on this show so it makes people feel more attracted to
the show and people on it which will therefore encourage them to watch the
Aaron Paul and Dominic Cooper both star in ‘Need For Speed’. They are both attractive
males and are both good actors. Many people have heard of Dominic Cooper who has
been in ‘Mamma Mia’, ‘Captain America: The First Avengers’ and ‘Abraham Lincoln:
Vampire Hunter’, is a very well known actor. So using the star theory, you would think
he would be the best choice for the marketing campaign for ‘Need For Speed’.
However, I don’t agree that he is the best choice because Aaron Paul is more well
know than him as he has starred in ‘Breaking Bad’ which is widely regarded as one of
the greatest American television series of all time. By its end, the series was among
the most-watched cable shows on American television and received numerous
awards. In 2014, ‘Breaking Bad’ entered the Guinness Book of Records as the highest
rated show of all time. For this reason I feel that Aaron Paul is by far the best choice
for promoting ‘Need For Speed’.
One of the main aspects of the film industry is it’s huge marketing campaigns,
even the smallest of movies can make millions of dollars at the box office. The
main aspects of the marketing process for films are:
Background: ‘Need For Speed’ was released in 1994, as a racing video game.
Identifying the audience: The key audience was males ranging from 15-30 for
both the racing video game and film.
Thinking ahead: Distributors for ‘Need For Speed’ would have looked at the
audience research, focus groups and surveys from the racing video game.
In post production of films the producers want to get feedback so they can make any changes. They do this by having
advance screenings which can then lead to changes being such as lines being dropped or scenes scrapped.
There are two types of advance screenings, they are both different but share one element which is that they both want
to get audience feedback. The first one is testers, which is like a first showing for film studios to see if everything works
well or not. The film is shown to people in the target audience for the film and then feedback is given on that. There is a
website called ‘Ain’t It Cool News’ which airs verdicts from people have been testers, this can sometimes cause issues
with the headlines that sometimes don’t have much substance. To become a tester you need to be selected by the
‘National Research Group’ (NRG) and they spilt people up into four groups, males under 25, males over 25, females under
25, females over 25. They approach these people on the street with a clipboard and ask them a few questions.
The second type of advance screening is talkers, this is people who give a more indirect form of feedback. They see the
finished product and won’t able to make any changes. The studio wants responses for future marketing campaigns. These
people would normally see the film a few weeks before it is released. A company that manages talker screenings is
‘SeeFilmFirst’ and they select people to be talkers by asking questions online about the genres of films they like. They
have to make sure they get the right audiences otherwise the results could damage the film because they are not
appropriate to the audience’s interests.
The rules of good copy still apply: Copy plays an important role in film marketing, the copyright elements which are
• A strong headline to capture the audiences attention.
• Show social proof through star endorsements, audience numbers, critic reviews or awards.
• Convey your big idea/theme through compelling taglines.
Test: In the film industry, it can be difficult to know the impact of trailers in the cinema, posters on walls and ads in
magazines. There is no way to understand the effectiveness of these promotional items and how they raise awareness. So
the only way they gain an understanding is through customer research which needs to be conducted regularly.
Anchorage for a film means ‘the fixing of meaning’ through connotations and signifiers (signs)
and can be a main technique in print advertising. In ‘Need For Speed’ this is mainly the use of
women and the use of cars. The posters that advertise the film both show this in their Mise en
Scene and this is also shown in the latest cover for ‘Need for Speed’ video game. These are both
positive and attractive things for the target audience of males aged 15-35. Also in the poster the
Mise en Scene shows the typical genre because it has the helicopters in the sky and the setting is
outdoors which shows there will be lots of racing and action, therefore making it more
interesting. The text on the posters shows drama and emphasises the action genre because it
looks like fire and makes the film look explosive. On one of the posters they show the main stars
of the film which will have a major impact on the audience because that will be a main factor on
them choosing to see the film. All of the factors discussed above are anchor points that will
attract the target audience to the film and therefore are a good use of the marketing campaign.
Synergy is when there are products sold that are related to a film. They help to promote the
film and advertise it by having products related to it. The main synergy for the film ‘Need
For Speed’ is the video game that was released in 1994. The game has been very successful
and therefore when the film was being released this had a major impact on the audiences
that would go and see it.
Unique Selling Point (USP) is something about a film which makes it individual and stand
out. The unique selling point for ‘Need For Speed’ is the use of attractive women and the
use of cars, they are highly attractive to the target audience because this is typical of their
likes. The posters that advertise the film both show this in their Mise en Scene and this is
also shown in the latest cover for the ‘Need For Speed’ video game.
Synergy and USP