Being a team full of movie lovers it’s one of our favorite time of year here at Shout Out Studio, award season. We love to have
yelling matches lively discussions amongst ourselves about what we think the best film of the year was. But today we are taking time out for one of our favorite Oscars, that they don’t give: the Oscar for best Marketing. Here is our list of movies that marketed themselves with genius and finesse this year.
Luke Pierce – Inside Llewyn Davis
I’ll be honest. There was absolutely no way I wasn’t going to see Inside Llewyn Davis. It’s a Cohen brothers film and it’s about folk music. Talk about a hipster jackpot. I had been anticipating its release for a while, but it wasn’t until I heard about the concert that I got super excited. The concert was called Another Day/Another Time and it was a one-night benefit concert for the National Recording Preservation Foundation. It took place in September, about three months before the release of the film. The concert generated so much buzz about how good the music in the film is that it started to create the feeling that it didn’t matter how good the film was (although come on, it’s a Cohen brothers film). The concert was documented and is now playing on Showtime. There are talks of continuing the concert for more venues and showtimes in 2014. In my opinion, when a film can create such a buzz about something other than it’s visual appeal, that is a marketing win and Inside Llewyn Davis did it beautifully.
Gretchen Ardizzone – Frozen
I’m giving the award for best movie marketing of 2013 to Frozen. No, it’s probably not in my top five favorite movies of the year, but there’s something to be said for the strategic marketing behind the movie. It’s no secret that Disney set out to market this movie differently than they had in the past. Hoping to attract an audience beyond little girls who love princesses, pretty dresses, and musical ballads, initial marketing was somewhat vague. Early on I had seen several trailers for the movie, but every trailer I had seen included a goofy little snowman, named Olaf, and an awkward Moose. You can check it out here.
It wasn’t until later in October, a month before the November official movie launch, more details around the plot of the movie were released. Apparently, I missed this part of the marketing though, having it in my head already that it looked like it was going to be good. So over Thanksgiving weekend, I headed out to the movies with my son, to see what I thought was going to be a cute animated movie about a snowman and a moose. Not so much. If you haven’t seen it, you can check out this trailer for a more accurate portrayal of what the movie is really about.
Turns out I may not have been the only one confused, not realizing that the movie was about the relationship of two sisters, sprinkled with a little youthful love story, according to Forbes, “43% of audience members were male.”
I’ll admit I would’ve been less inclined to go see the movie had I not been introduced to it in the way that I was. Disney creatively selected elements of the movie that would appeal to a broader audience upfront, and captured their interest, myself included.
Colin Smith – Anchorman 2
When it came to building a campaign to get the attention of viewers in 2013, no one did it better than Anchorman 2. To begin, they had the popularity of the first movie on their side. But they did more than just make ads and send the star-studded cast out to promote the highly anticipated sequel. They took it a step further.
They created content that people wanted to share. Instead of having Will Ferrell appear on shows to talk about how great they all feel about the movie, they sent Ron Burgundy to do what he does, report the news. His features in Dodge Durango commercials not only boosted their sale but also brought a humongous spike in their website’s traffic. The team also took to social media, giving fans a chance to interact with their favorite newscast from San Diego.
They did something they weren’t able to do the first time around: they created a campaign that was able to stand alone and didn’t rely on the movie. The buzz surrounding the release of Anchorman 2 was one that stretched beyond that of a normal sequel.