Some film makers still prep domain names as part of each movie’s online marketing strategy. Yet these days, movie websites pale in comparison to social media’s ability to generate buzz and attract audiences.
Ali Gray of The Guardian writes that a movie website will get more attention when it is shared on Facebook, Twitter, or Google+. Indeed, Gray writes, hashtags and Facebook page URLs “can do all kinds of heavy lifting.” Gray also cites recent examples of the movie website in its death throes.
“The Zac Efron movie That Awkward Moment had to opt for JustGetHorizontal.com (the film came out in January and the site is already offline). Cameron Diaz’s forthcoming comedy Sex Tape couldn’t have the obvious URL so the official site is at TheyForgotToDeleteIt.com (which redirects to the film’s Facebook page).”
For any skilled marketing consultant in Perth, the reality is all too clear: today’s businesses cannot afford to ignore the power of social media.
A Bit of History
The practice of putting up movie websites began in 1994 with the sci-fi film Stargate; the site has long since been taken down. Back then, anyone with at least basic knowledge of HTML can design their own movie site (or any website for that matter). Eventually, movie websites grew beyond animated GIFs and HTML codes. For instance, the website for the 1998 romantic comedy film You’ve Got Mail featured a full opening sequence.
Following social media’s debut as a marketing medium, teen vampire romance Twilight became the first movie to reach a million followers on Twitter. Meanwhile, the producers of horror film Paranormal Activity caved in under pressure from a million requests over social media for a U.S.-wide release. The public’s response resulted in a $15,000 film raking in a whopping $107.9 million domestic gross sales.
Social media marketing, then, takes into account a basic truth: businesses must go wherever people go. Considering that there are now around two billion social media users worldwide, it makes sense for businesses to promote their brands by means of such things as profile updates and hashtags. Today, social media should form a core component of any online marketing strategy, whether or not you’re in the film industry.
As the demise of movie websites goes to show, one’s chances of exposure without the help of social media are all but slim. Any business in Western Australia that wishes to launch a viral marketing campaign would do well to consult seasoned Perth marketing consultants like West Point Media.
(Source: “How Twitter killed the official movie website,” The Guardian, June 16, 2014)