Category: Movies

‘The Nun 2’ Movie Promotions Prepare You To Be Terrified

‘The Nun 2’ Movie Promotions Prepare You To Be Terrified

Movie promotions excite me, but what excites me, even more, is the brilliant incorporation of the unique aspects of movies into their respective promotional strategies rather than just deploying generic or conventional advertising. For instance, in my previous blog post on the promotion of the Tamil movie, ‘Maaveeran, I mentioned how the installation of a transparent banner, featuring the movie’s poster, on the facade of a cinema hall, made the people passing through the set-up recreate the iconic ‘overhead stare’ of Sivakarthikeyan in the film. Unless ‘Maaveeran‘ has a sequel/prequel/spin-off, this activation is certain to not be repeated for any other movie as it is closely associated with the film’s theme. In this regard, I recently came across some exciting stuff from the makers of the movie, ‘The Nun 2‘. I feel psyched about a couple of those strategies. So, lemme share them in this blog post!

“Creepy” nuns, all over the place:

As a part of the movie’s marketing campaign by ‘Warner Bros. Pictures‘, around twenty “creepy” nuns (humans dressed up as the evil entity, ‘Valak’ that features in the movies, ‘The Conjuring 2’, ‘The Nun’ and ‘The Nun 2’) have been set out in public to carry out a candlelight stroll.

The army of nuns flooded across some significant landmarks of different cities in the United States of America, like Brooklyn, New York, San Francisco, Miami, Denver, Atlanta and Washington, D.C, in Canada, like Montreal and Toronto, in England, like London and in India, like Mumbai.

Apart from swarming landmarks across different cities of various countries, the nuns made their appearance at the annual horror events, like ‘HorrorHound Weekend‘ and ‘Popcorn Frights‘ and at the movie’s exclusive screenings, like the annual speculative fiction fan convention, ‘Fan Expo Canada‘.

Below are the posts from the official X accounts of ‘The Nun‘ movie, ‘Warner Bros. UK‘ and ‘Warner Bros. India‘ on the stunt…

Across cities in the United States of America…

In London, England…

In Mumbai, India…

Throwback to a similar ‘”Creepy” nuns, all over the place’ stunt for ‘The Nun’:

Upon noticing these “creepy” nuns on the move, the excellent marketing campaign of the 2022 science fiction horror film, ‘M3gan‘ might occur to you, but I’d like to convey here that ‘The Nun‘ had similar promotions way back in 2018.

Here’s a look back at the movie’s campaign.

In Sydney, ‘Roadshow Films‘ and ‘OMD‘, in partnership with ‘Habitat‘, orchestrated a campaign, wherein unsuspecting morning commuters were in for a fright from a bevy of demonic nuns. Likewise, ‘Warner Bros. Canada‘ studio, in collaboration with the agency, ‘Rooftop‘, set out three teams of six nuns each to hit the streets, chanting in Latin and distributing double-sided prayer cards encouraging fans to share on social media using “I Hate #NUNDays” (NUNDay, a wordplay on Mondays). The activations in Canada were created to mark the studio’s partnership with ‘FanExpo‘, which has been considered a part of the Canadian strategy for the movie. Though these stunts appear to be relatively small-scale compared to that of ‘The Nun 2‘, they are equally creative.

Terror appears when you least expect it – A “creepy” newsstand:

Toward the end of ‘The Nun 2‘ trailer, you’d see the protagonist, ‘Sister Irene‘ gazing at a Valak-like artwork on a book at a newsstand. Upon hearing rapid footsteps, she gasps and then turns back only to see nothing. Again, as she turns slowly toward the newsstand, the Valak appears right in front of her from nowhere and has her in a chokehold.

The makers of ‘The Nun 2‘ kind of recreated the above scene.

A ‘The Nun 2‘ branded newsstand was placed in Venice Beach, California. Unsuspecting beachgoers felt shocked as a Valak popped out of the newsstand while they got closer to the prop and started having a look at the magazines. It’s just like how it makes an appearance in the scene from nowhere. As a result, it scares the shit out of them.

Below is the post from the official X account of ‘The Nun‘ movie on the stunt…


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So, how are these promotions gonna help the movie’s opening weekend prospects at the box office?

Upon encountering unusual sights of nuns in public, passersby would be nudged to stop by. Capture photographs of, or probably take selfies with the nuns. In the ‘The Nun 2‘ trailer, you’ll notice the girl named ‘Sophie‘ say ‘I saw a nun‘. If you notice the copies in almost all the X posts above, you’ll see the hashtag, ‘#ISawANun‘. So, any passersby noticing the nuns could later excitedly say, “I saw a nun” to their families and friends. Also, if they share their clicks, with nuns, on social media, they could probably include the hashtag, ‘#ISawANun‘. Thereby, the film’s producers make the audience recreate a moment of the movie. This would pave the way for user-generated content, helping organically to get the word out about the movie. And thereby, evoking interest in the film.

With respect to promoting movies in the annual horror events aforesaid, there’s a key takeaway point. FIND WHO & WHERE THE AUDIENCE FOR YOUR MOVIE IS AND THEN INVENTIVELY PROMOTE IT THERE.

So, in the aforementioned way, the promotions might help the movie’s opening weekend prospects at the box office.

Hope you liked the promotions for the movie, ‘The Nun 2‘ and my take on the same. Lemme know your feedback on this blog post’s comments section.

Photo Courtesy: Warner Bros. India

P.S. ‘The Nun 2‘, which is a sequel to ‘The Nun‘ (2018) and the ninth instalment in ‘The Conjuring Universe‘ franchise, is scheduled for a theatrical release on September 7, 2023. Do watch in Cinemas!

Look Back: A “Natural” Billboard to Promote ‘Maaveeran’

Look Back: A “Natural” Billboard to Promote ‘Maaveeran’

After a brief hiatus from blogging, I’m here again!

This time, I’ve come up with my second article in the Look Back‘ series, wherein I share interesting aspects I gather on the marketing of the movie or web series, which I watched on an over-the-top (OTT) platform and felt satisfied.

Recently, I watched the Sivakarthikeyan-starring Maaveeran‘ on prime video. I loved the movie a lot. It’s a very interesting film that brilliantly blends a fantasy aspect into a sensible narration. Having been so satisfied with the movie, I’ll share information about an activation that Maaveeran‘s producer, ‘Shanthi Talkies‘ had executed to promote the movie’s theatrical release.

About the movie, ‘Maaveeran’

The movie is about how a cowardly character named Sathya (played by Sivakarthikeyan) transforms into a brave personage and takes on a corrupt politician. In the movie, following an accident, Sathya starts hearing a voice, which foretells the problem that lies ahead for him. Whenever he hears it, he gives an overhead stare in anxiety as to where the voice comes from. And that ‘overhead stare’ has been leveraged by the film’s producer to conceive a brilliant marketing idea.

About the marketing idea…

On 13th July, a day prior to Maaveeran‘s theatrical release, ‘Shanthi Talkies‘ posted a video on its official X account on the installation of a transparent banner, featuring the movie’s poster, on the facade of PVR Sathyam Cinemas at Royapettah, Chennai. The video shows the poster being hand-drawn using black paint. The banner is then mounted overhead using four poles. So, when the light, especially the sunlight around noon, is blocked by the black paint in the banner, the poster’s shadow appears on the floor beneath the set-up. The shadow nudged anyone who passed through the installation to look at the overhead artwork. In the process, the person recreated the iconic ‘overhead stare’ of Siva Karthikeyan in ‘Maaveeran‘.

Below is the post from ‘Shanthi Talkies‘ on its official X account…

VJ Abhishek ideated this innovative concept.


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Recognition…

Karthik Gowda, Executive Producer of ‘Hombale Films‘ (The production house behind the movies, ‘K. G. F: Chapter 1’, ‘K. G. F: Chapter 2’ and ‘Kantara’ which became pan-Indian sensations) has appreciated the marketing idea via his official X account.

Below is the post from Karthik Gowda on his official X account…

Sivakarthikeyan has a history of some unique, interesting and brilliantly executed marketing ideas for his movies like ‘Remo‘, ‘Velaikkaran‘ and ‘Seema Raja‘. Now, with the aforementioned marketing idea, Maaveeran has joined the admirable list!

Photo Courtesy: Shanthi Talkies

Look Back: A “Spooky” Twitter Bot to Promote ‘Ouija: Origin of Evil’

Look Back: A “Spooky” Twitter Bot to Promote ‘Ouija: Origin of Evil’

When I feel satisfied completing a movie or web series on OTT, I google to know its critical reception, box-office performance, and the whereabouts of its actors. Above all, I spend relatively more time looking up the marketing endeavor put behind the movie. A lot of those marketing strategies would be as interesting as the associated movie or web series. For quite some time, I’ve been wishing to blog about such initiatives in an organized manner (although I’ve blogged considerably and randomly on movie marketing). It is not just that I love to put them down, but also because they deserve to be raved about for the creativity invested to conceive, design, and execute them. So, here I am to fulfill my wish with the ‘Look Back’ series, wherein I’ll retell the interesting aspects I gather on the marketing of the movie or web series I watch.

Kicking off the series…

Recently, I watched the 2016 American supernatural horror film, ‘Ouija: Origin of Evil‘ on Netflix. I loved the movie. So, I dug up to know its marketing initiatives. As a result, I got to know a handful of promotional events done for the movie, but the one that interested me the most is the campaign titled, ‘Ouija Knows All Twitter Bot‘. Therefore, I begin the series with this article on the initiative.

About the movie, ‘Ouija: Origin of Evil‘…

A widow (Elizabeth Reaser as Alice Zander), with her daughters, carry out a phony séance business at her home. Upon bringing the Ouija board to the business, they make contact with an evil spirit existing there. Consequently, the entity possesses Alice’s 9-year-old daughter (Lulu Wilson as Doris Zander). The movie then focuses on the event’s after-effects.

About the campaign, ‘Ouija Knows All Twitter Bot‘…

The movie’s distributor, ‘Universal Pictures’ and the Digital Marketing agency, ‘Addison Interactive’ collaborated on the campaign, which invited fans to tweet random questions to the Twitter handle, ‘@OuijaKnowsAll’. The questions posted were like, “What is my name?” and “are ghosts real?“. The agency-curated customized bot facilitated the Twitter handle to reply with a GIF image, which showed a planchette sequentially moving over the letters on the Ouija board per their order in the answers. The alphabet under focus on each movement of the planchette displayed beneath the board. Within the confines of the GIF image, the alphabet got added in an incremental manner post each movement and ended with accurate answers to the questions.

Reply to a few other questions had Doris Zander replacing the Ouija board and planchette in the GIF. For instance, a question like “Will Rihanna win a Grammy for her 8th album ANTI?” had the image say “OF COURSE“.


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About the offline promotions…

Real-world giant projections, installed at the annual Halloween events, ‘Haunted Hayride’ and ‘Halloween Horror Nights’, entertained people waiting in the queue. In conclusion, the ultimate goal was to get everyone buzzing around the movie.

Outcome…

Influencers and celebrities jumped on the bandwagon of posting questions, resulting in the campaign’s reach getting amplified. As a result, the initiative garnered 355,000+ questions and 23,000,000 impressions on Twitter by then.

Per Deadline, the movie debuted at 3,167 theaters with cumulative gross earnings of $14M in its Week 1.

Recognition…

As an entrant to the Clio Awards program, the agency submitted the below video and photo to the medium, ‘Theatrical: Social Media’ within the entry type, ‘Theatrical’, and the category, ‘Single Platform Campaign’. Eventually, the campaign won Clio Gold.

Source: Clios

‘Raaj Kamal Films International’ Has Set Out Interesting Promotions for ‘Vikram’

‘Raaj Kamal Films International’ Has Set Out Interesting Promotions for ‘Vikram’

It has been quite some time since I wrote about movie marketing. With this being the case, when I noticed the legendary actor Kamal Haasan’s upcoming film, ‘Vikram’ – one of my most anticipated movies of 2022 – promoted all along by some innovative and interesting initiatives, it became inevitable to feel excited and urged to put them down. So, here I am with this blog post.

The compelling promotions gradually ramped up the hype of Lokesh Kanagaraj‘s directorial besides the K-Town sensation Anirudh‘s chartbuster album. Now, let me provide an account of the endeavors.

1. Vikram Non-Fungible Tokens (Vikram NFTs):

Fantico‘, an NFT and gaming company owned by ‘Vistas Media Capital‘, is offering limited-edition Vikram NFTs in its soon-to-be-launched metaverse, ‘Vistaverse’ (To be set operative in partnership with Lotus Meta Entertainment) by collaborating with Raaj Kamal Films International (RKFI).

The NFTs will serve as a ticket to the metaverse experience. In addition, it will offer its buyers utilities like…

  • Access to unique artworks of characters
  • Digital avatars
  • Props
  • Posters
  • Film memorabilia
  • Fan interaction moments
  • Private screenings
  • Access to by-invite only to a traveling Vistadome party
  • A choice to convert some of the NFTs to actual underlying tangible assets

The NFTs will also give preferential access to virtual land sales in Mumbai and Chennai in Vistaverse, which RKFI claims to be the first such in-game asset to be launched in India.

Actor Kamal Haasan unveiled Vikram NFTs along with the movie’s trailer on 18th May 2022 at Cannes Film Festival.

Vikram NFTs arrived for presale on 28th May 2022 over here: vikram.vistaverse.io

As one may know that NFTs are one of the secure ways of trading, I consider the initiative to be smart in monetizing the brand.


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2. ‘Vikram’ branded artworks executed directly over train engines and coaches:

Raaj Kamal Films International, along with Southern Railway, has branded the WAP 7 class locomotive or engine at Erode with the official first look of ‘Vikram’. Below is Southern Railway‘s tweet about the collaboration…

Also, ‘Vikram’ branded graffiti have been executed over a couple of double-decker coaches of Uday Express, which plies to and fro between Coimbatore Junction and K.S.R Railway Station (Bengaluru).

Chennai-based graffiti writer and street artist ‘A-kill’, Pune-based artist ‘Afzan Pirzade’, who specializes in portrait arts, and Karthik SS of Chennai art studio, ‘108 Collective’ have come together to realize the artwork.

Previous notable arts of ‘A-kill’ in Chennai are the widely popular mural featuring two sisters smiling together in Kannagi Nagar and the HIV/AIDS awareness street art across Indira Nagar MRTS’ main façade.

Afzan Pirzade’s painting, along with Lobster, as part of the ‘Paint my city’ project for the Kumbh Mela festival 2019 was one of the most widely shared images of street art done for the event.

In Chennai, Karthik SS and his team were behind the initial concepts and sketches for the murals present on the walls of Andhra Mahila Sabha hospital in Durgabai Deshmukh Road, Adyar. The arts are also being sold as NFTs in the marketplace, ‘JupiterMeta’.

In post-pandemic times, I could recall the makers of the 2022 Indian period romantic drama, Radhe Shyam’ coming up with a similar strategy, wherein they put up the movie’s posters over Delhi Metros. But, the promotion over train for ‘Vikram’ spans across Tamil Nadu and Karnataka because of the medium chosen i.e. Uday Express.

3. Kamal Haasan surprises his fans from behind them while they adulate him:

In the below video uploaded to the YouTube channel of ‘Sony Music South‘, fans of Kamal Haasan are shown adulating their favorite star. The highlights are the moments we watch them getting surprised as they either see Kamal Haasan or hear his voice from behind.

This promotional video follows suit of Chadwick Boseman and Puneeth Rajkumar surprising their fans.

4. A brief reunion of old pals, wherein ‘Panchatanthiram‘ meets ‘Vikram‘:

This is yet another short promotional clip for ‘Vikram‘, which is uploaded to the Youtube channel, ‘Moviebuff Tamil‘. It features actors Jayaram, Ramesh Aravind, Sriman, and Yugi Sethu enacting the respective characters portrayed by them in the 2002 Tamil language comedy film, ‘Panchatanthiram‘. Kamal Haasan and Simran are the movie’s leads. The short video appears as an extension to Panchatanthiram. In other words, the video is a light-hearted attempt at the concept of ‘Panchatanthiram‘ meeting ‘Vikram‘.

The video has been conceptualized and executed by Team Social Beat.

5. As dusk fell in Dubai, Burj Khalifa put on a visual spectacle:

Like Netflix promoted the launch of Volume 1 of Stranger Things 4 by making the rifts to Upside Down appear on monuments like the Empire State Building in New York and Gateway of India in Mumbai, Raaj Kamal Films International built anticipation for Vikram by putting on a visual spectacle on Burj Khalifa.

6. Raaj Kamal Films International‘s fusion marketing with Bisleri:

Raaj Kamal Films International collaborated with Bisleri in Tamil Nadu and Kerala to render limited edition ‘Vikram‘ branded water bottles.

Apart from the above promotions, the makers of ‘Vikram‘ organized a grand audio and trailer launch event in Chennai, set up a digital billboard with the movie’s poster at the airport, facilitated the incorporation of customized emoji to select hashtags on Twitter for the film, and devised a handful of pre-release events. So, it was an all-out effort from Raaj Kamal Films International, in association with Turmeric Media, in creating sky-high expectations for the film. Also, the film’s cast and crew involved in a slew of shows (Including Super Singer Junior 8 on Vijay Television and Big Boss Malayalam on Asianet) and interviews on linear TV and YouTube channels respectively.

Featured image courtesy: Raaj Kamal Films International

4 Marketing Lessons, Businesses Can Learn From ‘Soorarai Pottru’!

4 Marketing Lessons, Businesses Can Learn From ‘Soorarai Pottru’!

A couple of days back, I watched the Amazon Original, ‘Soorarai Pottru’ on the OTT platform. The Sudha Kongara’s sixth directorial venture is not only moving but also is studded with a number of lessons for businesses to take away. In this article, I list them. But, before listing, I shall boil down the movie, which is loosely based on the life of G. R. Gopinath, founder of ‘Simplifly Deccan’ – India’s first low-cost carrier.

A brief on the movie…

Soorarai Pottru’ chronicles the inspirational journey of Nedumaaran (Suriya), an ex-Air Force officer, who is launching a low-cost airline in an attempt to afford flight travel to the less privileged. In the process of realizing his dream, Nedumaaran is hampered at regular intervals by Paresh Goswami (Paresh Rawal), a leader in the aviation industry and the one whom the former considers a role model. Amidst such tricky circumstances, Nedumaaran makes his dream come true. Alongside him is Sundari (Aparna), his better half, who apart from successfully running a bakery, stays with him through thick and thin in breathing new life into his dream.

Now, let me list the lessons I observed.

1. Empathize with the pain points of your customers:

While serving in the Indian Air Force, knowing his father dying, Nedumaaran rushes to the airport. When trying to purchase a flight ticket, he gets to know that the economy class tickets are fully booked, and he is short of the fare of a business class ticket. As he desperately wants to travel to his native, he even goes on to plead with his fellow passengers for the balance money. Also, he promises that he would return it to them but it goes in vain. So, he resorts to alternate modes of transportation. And by the time, he reaches his native, his father has already died.

Following these series of unpleasant experiences, he doesn’t stop with just painfully running into them but goes on to empathize. He empathizes from the shoes of all those who consider the prevailing pricing of airline tickets unaffordable. That very thought urges him to make the common man fly. And the result is… a low-cost airline.

2. Take into account the value-conscious aspect of the target market:

As a follow-up to empathizing with customers’ pain points, he formulates a business model that enables passengers to buy plane tickets, like they purchase soaps. With India being a value-conscious market, Nedumaaran decides to charge 1000 rupees per ticket as opposed to the market rate of 10,000. Simultaneously, he negates various value-adds. He doesn’t provide newspapers. No extra food or staff. And to top it all, he decides to operate his flights for six trips a day as against the 2 trips by existing players. Eventually, he drops costs but at the same time ensures in delivering a quality service.


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3. Team up with another business to do fusion marketing:

In a chapter of the late American Business Writer Jay Conrad Levinson’s book*, the author has listed twenty ways in which guerrilla marketing differs from the old-fashioned brand of marketing. In one of the ways, the writer defines traditional marketing as an approach, which suggests a brand to observe its industrial market completely to decide which of its competitors are to be utterly defeated by it.

Conversely, he proclaims guerilla marketing as an outlook, which advocates a brand to discover businesses that possess the same kind of potential customers/clients and standards as it does, so that the brand can collaborate with the selected businesses in their marketing endeavors.

By opting for the latter, the author asserts that a brand is expanding its marketing reach, but reducing its marketing cost as it is sharing the expenses with the fellow business. And, he puts forth the term Fusion Marketing, which guerrillas use for this viewpoint.

Now, coming back to the movie. As Nedumaaran partners with his wife Sundari to sell food to his passengers, he provides hospitality to them and at the same time, earns extra money for his family (A collaboration with another catering service would have dented his profit margin).

Towards the climax, a couple of young men, who just completed a trip in Nedumaaran‘s flight, render a casual positive remark over the food. This implies that Sundari‘s expansion of her products beyond her bakery has become fruitful and it’s a win-win situation for the entrepreneurs.

Also Read:

4 Examples of Captivating Fusion Marketing Campaigns (And Why They’re So Great)

These are the 10 Best Burger King Marketing Campaigns of 2018

4. Identify your competitor(s) (If necessary, cut across industries):

Way back in 2019, in a letter to its shareholders, Netflix wrote, “We compete with (and lose to) Fortnite more than HBO.” This was owing to Netflix considering the online game, ‘Fortnite’ as its competitor in entertaining its customers, and eating up their free time in the process.

Likewise, Nedumaaran doesn’t view another airline that offers flight tickets at relatively affordable prices as his competitor. Instead, with 1,000 rupee tickets – way below market rates – he wants to meet the Indian Railways head-on.

So, for a business, it is essential to identify its competitor(s). If necessary, it has to do so by cutting across industries because sometimes your competitors may end up in another industry, as in the case of Netflix.

That’s it with my observations and interpretations pertaining to the lessons, which businesses can take away from ‘Soorarai Pottru’. Hope you liked reading the write-up. Let me know your opinion(s) in the ‘Comment’ section.

* Guerrilla Marketing: Easy and Inexpensive Strategies for making big profits from your small business

Featured image courtesy:

2D Entertainment and Sikhya Entertainment

‘Soorarai Pottru’ goes the breathtaking ‘Red Bull’ way! (But, not exactly)

‘Soorarai Pottru’ goes the breathtaking ‘Red Bull’ way! (But, not exactly)

Hope you remember the Austrian skydiver Felix Baumgartner’s breathtaking descent from over 24 miles (39km) above the earth! It was way back on October 14th, 2012 when the spellbinding feat was achieved as part of the Red Bull Stratos project, wherein the company invested 30$ million and raked in 500$ million through sales.

Whenever I think of Guerrilla Marketing stunts, this famous, record-breaking space jump instantly occurs to me.

Now, here is an instance of Guerrilla Marketing from the makers of Tamil actor Suriya starring ‘Soorarai Pottru’ along the lines of Baumgartner’s astonishing 2012 feat. But, not exactly.

To be more precise, if it was Felix Baumgartner reaching the stratosphere for Red Bull, then it is a board containing the autographs of thousands of Suriya’s fans for ‘Soorarai Pottru’.


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The makers of the movie have orchestrated with a German crew to accomplish this ‘OUT OF THE WORLD’ task by fastening the board to an unmanned high-altitude balloon.

Suriya posted a brief video on this promotional effort, dubbed ‘Tribute to my anbanafans!!’ on November 11th, 2020 to his social media profiles.

The clip provides a glimpse of the board floating across space. Also, the altitude last shown in the video appears to be 35km above the earth! ‘Soorarai Pottru’, the first big-ticket movie from Tamil Film Industry to be directly released on an OTT platform, goes for a world premiere on Amazon Prime Video on November 12th, 2020! The latest Guerrilla Marketing stunt from team ‘Soorarai Pottru’ finishes the movie’s vigorous pre-release promotions on a high note.

Featured image courtesy:

2D Entertainment and Sikhya Entertainment

Hark back to the Interesting Promotions for ‘Cinthol’ and 1967 Tamil Film ‘Adhey Kangal’

Hark back to the Interesting Promotions for ‘Cinthol’ and 1967 Tamil Film ‘Adhey Kangal’

Being movie enthusiasts, my father and I use to deliberate about them now and then. Recently, my father re-watched the 1967 Tamil mystery thriller, ‘Adhey Kangal’, produced by AVM Productions, on Amazon Prime Video. After watching the flick, he mentioned recollecting a then print marketing strategy for ‘Cinthol’ and A. C. Tirulokachandar’s directorial effort.

He said the production house or the Godrej Consumer Products Company Ltd (GCPL) owned brand had then strategized newspaper advertisements quizzing readers the number of instances on the brand name ‘Cinthol’ featuring in the movie. And, they were asked to mail their answers to the address specified in the advert. Likewise, there was a contest where consumers were encouraged to dispatch ‘Cinthol’ soap’s wrappers by post. Also, the advertisements carried an announcement on considerable rewards for winners of the contests. Thereby, prodding the readers to watch the movie as well as to purchase ‘Cinthol‘ soaps.


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It was a scene from the movie that enabled my father hark back to the strategy.

The narration of the scene sets off with the heroine and her friends shown indulging actively in social work. One among them bathes a couple of kids of the locality. A little one who awaits in queue for his turn carries Cinthol Body Talcum Powder (Probably!) and soap apiece, with the sides of both products carrying the brand name facing the camera. The lady who helps in bathing gets the soap from the kid. And then comes a close-up where the woman shows the brand name more prominently and then unwraps the soap’s cover.

In this day and age when product placement or embedded marketing has become more apparent even in TV News Channels – brand names affixed to laptop’s top cover – it is interesting to know of an instance in yesteryear and the print marketing strategy coupled with it.

‘The Curse of La Llorona’ impressively jumped on the ‘Avengers: Endgame’ bandwagon

‘The Curse of La Llorona’ impressively jumped on the ‘Avengers: Endgame’ bandwagon

'The Curse of La Llorona' impressively jumped on the 'Avengers : Endgame' bandwagon

It’s a rarity to see a flick in a movie series, generating massive frenzy all over the world before its theatrical release. Now, when I try to recall one such rare movie, Avengers: Endgame of Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), pops up without a shadow of a doubt.

Since the movie, Avengers: Infinity War ended in a suspenseful manner, fans were left with utmost anxiety as to not miss the film’s sequel. Also, as the sequel, Avengers: Endgame (22nd movie of MCU) being labeled as the last movie of the franchise, the eagerness among the fans got immense. These aspects laid the groundwork for the “last installment” of one of the most memorable franchises of Hollywood to ride high.

For brands looking to promote their product/services, the movie appeared as a significant vehicle to unleash their prowess in marketing. Thereby, we have been observing various brands impressively riding the Avengers: Endgame wave either by associating themselves with the movie or by ambushing the same.

What appeared more interesting in these strategies was a movie doing a marketing ambush at Avengers: Endgame. Wherein, the ambush extended beyond the universe…SHARED UNIVERSE!

Before describing the movie’s marketing ambush, let me brief about a series of promotional contents shared by Marvel Studios for Avengers: Endgame.

A month before the release of Avengers: End game, a series of character posters featuring the MCU superheroes were shared on social media. Superheroes, who survived the snap of Thanos like Tony Stark, Steve Rogers and Thor in ‘Avengers: Infinity War’, appeared in full color. Whereas, the heroes, who turned to dust such as T’Challa, Peter Quill and Gamora, appeared in black and white. Also, each poster featured the tagline, ‘AVENGE THE FALLEN’. As the Hollywood Reporter puts, the tagline offered a new definition of the Avengers title and a callback to 2012’s first Avengers movie, wherein Tony Stark told Loki, “If we can’t protect the Earth, you can be damn sure we’ll avenge it.

Check out the character posters below…


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The Curse of La Llorona‘s marketing ambush at Avengers: Endgame:

On 25th April 2019, the day before the release of Endgame, the following poster was released in the social media of the movie, The Curse of La Llorona

Also Read: Dindigul Thalappakatti’s marketing ambush at the 2019 IPL!

The poster featured the titular character, La Llorona looking off camera and the tagline, ‘AVENGE THE CHILDREN’, rephrasing ‘AVENGE THE FALLEN’. The tagline appeared in a similar font and carried the spark effect from the original posters.

The rephrased text makes more sense to the movie’s crux as La Llorona persistently tries to drown children. Also, the social media post carried the text, ‘Twice the scares, half the time’ with the hashtag, ‘#LaLlorona’.

When all is said and done, it’s really impressive to notice The Curse of La Llorona, the sixth installment in The Conjuring Universe doing a marketing ambush at Avengers: Endgame of Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Photo Courtesy: Fotor and The Curse of La Llorona

Experiential Marketing Campaigns: Warner Bros. Pictures’s ‘The Nun’ vs 24AM STUDIOS’s ‘Seema Raja’

Experiential Marketing Campaigns: Warner Bros. Pictures’s ‘The Nun’ vs 24AM STUDIOS’s ‘Seema Raja’

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Experiential Marketing Campaigns: Warner Bros. Pictures’s ‘The Nun’ vs 24AM STUDIOS’s ‘Seema Raja

Previously, in my article titled, ‘Experiential Marketing Campaigns: Warner Bros. Pictures’s ‘IT’ vs 24AM STUDIOS’s ‘Velaikkaran’, I presented you the similarities between the marketing tactics of ‘Warner Bros. Pictures’ and ‘24AM STUDIOS’ for the 2017 American supernatural horror film, ‘IT’ and Tamil social thriller movie, ‘Velaikkaran’ respectively. As a follow-up, in this write-up, I share my thoughts about the Experiential Marketing Campaigns of ‘Warner Bros. Pictures’ and ‘24AM STUDIOS’ for their recent offerings, ‘The Nun’, an American gothic horror film and ‘Seema Raja’, a Tamil action comedy drama film, respectively.

Warner Bros. Pictures’s photo booth at ‘FANEXPO Canada 2018’ for ‘The Nun’:

Fan Expo Canada is a fan convention being held year after year in Toronto, Ontario. As part of the event for 2018 (August 30th 2018 – September 2nd 2018), ‘Warner Bros. Pictures Canada’ had put up The Nun-branded photo booth for the purpose of activation for the movie. Wherein, the fans stepped inside a mobile mirror room and clicked a selfie with the lookalike of the scary Valak. Taking a snap with the entity’s double in a room with an eerie backdrop created an illusion of posing with 100 of such creepy Valaks. When exiting the booth, people were provided with a complimentary photo, sharable in social media. Also, it was advertised that fans will get a chance to win prizes including passes for the advance screening of ‘The Nun’. The customized photos had the movie’s name and theatrical release date i.e. September 7.

Atop the booth was the call-to-action, ‘SHARE YOUR #LASTPRAYER’, which was prominent enough to encourage people to share their photos using the hashtag, ‘#LastPrayer’ in social networking sites. The phrase, ‘WITNESS THE DARKEST CHAPTER IN THE CONJURING UNIVERSE’ was imprinted over the exteriors of the booth along with the movie’s name, theatrical release date and the technologies in which the flick is going to be available in theatres like IMAX and Dolby Cinema.

To prepare audience for the feel, which the movie is going to deliver them, replicas of tombstones rigged with bells (Reminiscent of a nightmarish graveyard sequence from ‘The Nun’) were erected over a couple of false burials at the booth’s entryway. And, a couple of effigies of a faceless nun (Reminiscent of the character appearing in the movie) were placed at the top of the booth.

An announcement, about The Nun-branded photo booth, was put out by ‘Warner Bros. Pictures Canada’ and ‘FANEXPO Canada’ in social media.

Check the replies to the below tweet to have a look at the customised versions of the photos, captured at the activation!


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24AM STUDIOS’s karaoke booth at popular multiplexes for ‘Seema Raja’:

Karaoke Booth in Luxe
Couple of karaoke booths (One for adults and the mini version for kids) placed at ‘Jazz Cinemas Luxe‘ at ‘Phoenix Market City‘ in Chennai

24AM STUDIOS’, apart from deploying traditional marketing tactics, has been a production house, which has been interacting with the movie going audience using innovative ways for their films.

For their debut venture ‘Remo, the studios had employed Cupid Standees’ campaign, which served as a perfect example of how content can be personalized in such a way that it resonates with the target audience.

For ‘Velaikkaran’ (24AM STUDIOS’s second film), the makers had made the slum set, featured in the movie, open for a public visit.

People do not pay attention to advertising; they pay attention only to things that interest them.

I came across the above phrase in the book, ‘Guerrilla Marketing: Easy and Inexpensive Strategies for making big profits from your small business’ written by the late American Business Writer Jay Conrad Levinson. The recent promotional strategy of ‘24AM STUDIOS’, for their third production venture, ‘Seema Raja’, Seema Raja-branded karaoke booth appears as a perfect illustration of the above quote.

Of late, a lot of people seem to actively express themselves in platforms like ‘musical.ly’ and ‘Dubsmash’. So, there seems to be no better time than the present to roll-out the offline customer engagement marketing tool, karaoke booth. Karaoke booth is where people can privately render their vocals for pre-recorded music and eventually combine both.

The booth unveiled for Seema Raja, emphasizes the movie by offering the pre-recorded musical tracks of five songs from the film as of now. Also, it contains the lyric videos and the trailer of the movie. People can also try out Dubsmash with the teaser of Seema Raja.

The best from among the performers in the karaoke booth will be picked and provided with an opportunity to meet D.Imman (Music Director of Seema Raja). It has also been advertised that the performances of the people will be uploaded in YouTube. In order to encourage an online conversation around the campaign, hashtags such as ‘SingAlongWithSeemaRaja’ and ‘#SeemaRajaKaraokeBooth’ have been created.

This participatory tool powered by ‘CanLah! Studio’, has been placed in popular multiplexes like ‘Palazzo’ at ‘The Forum Vijaya Mall’ and ‘Jazz Cinemas Luxe’ at ‘Phoenix Market city’ in Chennai, ‘Cinipriya Complex’ in Madurai and ‘FunCinema’ at ‘Fun Republic Mall’ in Coimbatore. This approach should have helped the movie to gain more exposure among the theatre-going audience.

A Special Midnight Screening for ‘The Nun’:

To make fans feel utterly terrified, ‘Warner Bros. UK’ offered them an opportunity to watch ‘The Nun’ at midnight on September 6th 2018, inside Brompton Cemetery (a London cemetery in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea). To get a pair of tickets, the fans had to visit www.seeitfirst.com and enter the code, BCM37X.

Click here and watch fans appearing panic-stricken by faceless nuns, jumping out at them at the cemetery, before the screening!

A Special Touring Talkies Screening for ‘Seema Raja’:

Touring Talkies’, an almost defunct concept, is the practice of screening films under a tent, usually covered with a thatched roof or a ceiling using asbestos sheets. ‘24AM STUDIOS’ tried reviving this thing of the past by arranging ‘Seema Raja’ shows at three locations of Tamil Nadu namely ‘S.E.V Matriculation School’ (Natham Road, Madurai), ‘St. John’s Vestry Anglo Indian School’ (Trichy) and ‘Cluster Media Academy’ (Peelamedu, Coimbatore) at 7:00 PM on September 16th 2017. The hashtag, ‘#SeemaRajaTouringTalkies’ was created to nurture an online dialogue around the campaign.

Apart from karaoke booths and touring talkies shows, ‘24AM STUDIOS’ came up with Seema Raja-branded mini trucks, carrying bioscopes equipped with head phones, which traveled across Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry. Wherein, people were able to watch the videos of Seema Raja. Customized hashtags, ‘#SeemaRajaBioscope’ and ‘#SeemaRajaBioscopeVandi’ were launched to integrate this street marketing drive with the online space.

Leveraging the marketing tool,360° video’ to encourage the audience to go through an immersive experience:

To promote ‘The Nun’, ‘Warner Bros. Pictures UK’ had released a 360° video titled, ‘The Nun – 360 Experience – Official Warner Bros. UK’ in its YouTube channel. In the video, the fans get a chance to virtually traverse through the cloistered abbey, featured in the movie.

Click here to watch the 360° video!

Conclusion:

In addition to being interesting, the aforementioned experiential marketing campaigns of ‘Warner Bros. Pictures’ and ‘24AM STUDIOS’, for ‘The Nun’ and ‘Seema Raja’, offer some important takeaways such as the right place (or) platform where a campaign has to be deployed and the ideal partnership to be involved in, to plan and implement a striking marketing strategy. To top it all, the campaigns had boosted a significant pre-release buzz for the respective movies and have become memorable!

And, here ends my blog post about the Experiential Marketing Campaigns of ‘Warner Bros. Pictures’ and ‘24AM STUDIOS’ for ‘The Nun’ and ‘Seema Raja’ respectively. Now, let me know your opinion on my article in the comments section!

Amazing ads that helped ‘Tamizh Padam 2’ get massive pre-release buzz

Amazing ads that helped ‘Tamizh Padam 2’ get massive pre-release buzz

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Amazing ads that helped ‘Tamizh Padam 2‘ get massive pre-release buzz

Coming up with the right titles and honing the creative

This was Fox Home Entertainment’s game plan to pull off its amazing Blu-ray stunt at Walmart for Deadpool 2.

Likewise, to promote Tamizh Padam 2 (a sequel to the 2010 Tamil Parody film, Thamizh Padam), the below note appears to be the game plan of its makers.

Picking up movies (or) news that made headlines and honing the creative

To turn the film, Thamizh Padam into a franchise, Y Not Studios and Director C. S. Amudhan (Director of Thamizh Padam and Tamizh Padam 2) have pulled out all the stops.

The sequel’s large-scale promotion commenced with a bold and a wacky poster. Since then, each step in the movie’s marketing drive has been simple yet effective. At the same time, all seem to appear cost-effective (or at least so, when compared to the prevailing regional movie promotions).

Here’s a rundown of the amusing ads, which Y Not Studios rolled out in the lead-up to the release of Tamizh Padam 2.

First, here’s one of the early poster, advertising the initial release date of Tamizh Padam 2, in theaters… and Tamil Rockers. Wherein, Tamil Rockers was mentioned as the movie’s ‘Official Piracy Partner’. Actor Siddharth tweeted out the poster first from his Twitter handle.


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On the eve of Women’s Day (2018), Actor Madhavan shared a ‘soup song’ for women (part of the film) in Twitter.

Then, in May, Director Venkat Prabhu shared the ‘official first look’ of the film’s press release. The note briefed the ‘reasons’ behind the delay in the release of the movie.

On May 31st, Tamizh Padam 2 teaser dropped. All along, every single announcement above the movie triggered a significant online conversation. To top it all, the teaser kicked up the already prevailing excitement.

Following the viral photo showing a group of leaders including German Chancellor Angela Merkel and American President Trump, C. S. Amudhan tweeted a still featuring actors Shiva, Iswarya Menon and few others on June 12th.

Soon after the release of Tik Tik Tik (advertised as India’s first space adventure), a poster – featuring actors Shiva, Iswarya Menon and Sathish – was released on June 24th. All three in casuals, wearing space helmets and playing cards in space (Supposedly!). The poster carried an announcement about the release of a full video song on June 26th.

As a follow-up to the announcement, on June 26th, the video song titled, Naan Yaarum Illa got released. The song was sensational and raised further expectations over the movie.

To announce the ‘U’ rating, obtained by Tamizh Padam 2 from censor board, the makers shared the following ad

And finally, as a countdown to the movie’s release, a series of posters popped up in the social media of Y Not Studios.

‘Timely ones’ like…

‘Even more timely ones’ (within a matter of hours) like…

The social media presence of Tamizh Padam 2‘s cast and crew (especially the ones of director, producer and production house) has been crucial… crucial in pumping up the excitement towards the movie. The weird tone of the movie did translate well in their social media. But, in taking the franchise forward, it is ideal to complement it with an exclusive social media account. Such an account for the franchise can come in handy in mobilizing the fans in an even better way.

(Photo Courtesy: Y Not Studios)