26 December 2012 1563 Views

Viral Marketing Is (Partly) Saving Hollywood

by Dan Koelsch

This past week, Mashable posted an infographic from Allmand Law that shows how the film industry in America is able to avoid bankruptcy despite ticket sales declining. Check out the infographic after the break, along with my commentary on the components that deal with our niche.

As you can see above, social media and viral marketing have played an important role in studios’ business plans. Unfortunately, the infographic focuses more on films that had a more directly viral presence, such as screening demands and well-tended Facebook pages. It ignores the more complex viral marketing that we at MovieViral like to focus on, such as ARGs and other interactive components. However, I can see why they didn’t bother.

It’s hard to measure the financial impact of a costly campaign like “Flynn Lives” for TRON: Legacy or “Why So Serious?” for The Dark Knight Rises. Sure, lots of people get involved, but how does that actually translate into ticket sales? Merchandising seems to be only place where revenue could easily be found with ARGs. For instance, The Rocket Poppeteers Depot for Super 8 sold t-shirts, patches, and stickers that only players of the ARG would bother getting. Unfortunately, this means that even if those sales figures could be found, they probably don’t mean much to the bottom line.

Let us know what you think about all of this. Can the financial benefits of complex ARGs like Flynn Lives be tracked? On a side note, is it more important to have a larger audience be part of your ARG, or to have a much more immersive experience that less people will follow? Give us your insights in the comments below.



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