Over the holiday weekend I was one of the millions of movie-goers who patiently waited in line to see “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. Since I had been eagerly awaiting its release for months, I was all too happy to be consumed by all the pre-release hype… and there seemed to be no shortage of it. For the entire week leading up to its debut it was almost impossible to avoid Indy – reviews, sneak peeks, trailers, banner ads and countless appearances by the stars on every show from Good Morning America to SNL. It was obvious that Paramount was going to exhaust every possible marketing avenue and surprise, social media was no exception.
According to ClickZ, “Starting Wednesday morning, Paramount offered Facebook users a chance to send their friends a small digital version of Indy’s iconic brown hat as a “virtual gift.” While some gifts require a $1 fee, the Fedora was offered as a free sponsored gift from the studio. The Fedoras became available at 4:30am on Wednesday morning, the day before the movie hit theaters. By 3pm, all 250,000 had sold out.”
And it didn’t end there…
“Each Fedora gift provided a link to the movie’s Facebook page, where fans could find local showings, read other users’ reviews, post messages, download widgets and other applications, and view stills from the film’s production. The page also included a space for users to upload videos and photos of their own, including an instructional video on “How to Crack a Whip Like Indy” and the infamous Annie Leibovitz Vanity Fair photos of Miley Cryus with a brown Fedora superimposed on her head. Paramount also ran a series of display ads on Facebook pointing users to the page. As of Thursday afternoon, the page had more than 62,000 fans.”
Promoting movies on social networks is nothing new, but Paramount’s campaign was impressive. They knew the buzz was building and did a great job cultivating it through the social networks with fairly straightforward viral tactics.
In my opinion, Indy came up a little short during this installment, but I still enjoyed seeing him crack his whip and make his trademark one-liners. Regardless, I have to commend Paramount on a great promotional performance. (Although I’m still waiting for my friend request from Indy to arrive.)