Movie promotions on digital have taken a giant leap of faith. Gone are the days of promoting the trailer, songs and dialogues in silos, presently we are witnessing innovative digital strategies driven by production houses. The intention is no more about trending on social media (except for some) but to create content and curiosity.
Recently Yash Raj Films executed an extensive digital marketing campaign around the Shah Rukh Khan starrer FAN. Videos formed the primary digital marketing strategy, along with a bunch of interesting social media engagements around the movie. (Read: Inside The Jabra Digital Marketing Promotions Of SRK’s Latest Movie FAN)
Another movie that is creating buzz with its content and spooky digital marketing activities comes from the production house of Eros Now. Releasing today, Radhika Apte starrer Phobia is a psychological thriller directed by Pawan Kripalani. The film revolves around a young artist Mehak (Radhika) who has developed severe agoraphobia– the fear of open spaces, after having been sexually assaulted in the past.
Phobia is not a run-of-the-mill psychological thriller. The makers along with the marketing team didn’t want to follow the regular film promotion steps. This challenge ensured that the team came up with a radical promotional campaign with a strong focus on digital along with other forms of marketing.
Prior to the motion poster teaser and the trailer launch, the team launched six 30-second “What’s your Phobia?” videos. All these videos featured Radhika showcasing different forms of phobias such as Mysophobia (fear of germs), Astraphobia (fear of thunderstorms), Somniphobia (fear of falling asleep), Panophobia (fear of unknown), among other phobias.
Post this, the stage was set for the launch of the trailer. As of now, the one-and-half-minute video has fetched more than 2 million views.
Thereafter the entire digital marketing efforts have focused on building the buzz around the phobia factor. The next activity was building on the phobia factor but with a mixture of spookiness and fun. The team planned to play a prank on common people.
The idea of executing a spooky prank germinated from the movie trailer. Listening to fans, the marketing team was aware that the chopped finger lying in the ice tray scene really scared many. The same idea was taken forward in the prank where a chopped finger was given to employees to open the security door by the guard. Obviously the reactions were not funny at all.
The video has close to 50K views on YouTube. The idea to build upon phobias is interesting but the execution could have been better. The prank video looked half-baked, it could have been fun if the lead actress could have been part of the prank while it was executed.
However, the 360-degree promotional video released a week ago didn’t disappoint at all. Trusting on the growing trend of the acceptance of 360 degree experience, the two-and-half-minute video is engaging and at the same time brings the magical experience of 360 degree.
On social media, Eros Now has been sharing the trailer video, song and dialogue promos.
— Eros Now (@ErosNow) May 23, 2016
— Eros Now (@ErosNow) May 24, 2016
Parking aside the serious phobias, Radhika also reveals some of the funny phobias for the digital audience. For instance Aunty-O-Phobia – the fear of that one aunty who is always behind you.
Are you angry when someone calls you AUNTY? 😛 Well, then you're suffering from something called as Aunty-O-Phobia!https://t.co/wj2tGJctSh
— Eros Now (@ErosNow) May 24, 2016
Some more fun with memes:
— Eros Now (@ErosNow) May 6, 2016
— Eros Now (@ErosNow) May 7, 2016
And the evergreen selfie contest:
— Eros Now (@ErosNow) May 12, 2016
In the age of creating original content for web, Eros is not staying behind. The company has produced a series of short horror videos where you’ll be chilled to the bone. Hosted on the Eros Now platform, these short videos are indeed worth watching.
Eros has also shot an exclusive black and white six minute interview with Radhika. Again the content has been hosted on the portal with bits of it being promoted on social media.
— Eros Now (@ErosNow) May 18, 2016
Innovative digital promotions
Phobia is already out in theaters and the early reviews are not bad. The end of the weekend will decide the fate of the movie but for now the digital promotions haven’t disappointed at all.
Building a series of videos around phobias and also bringing the fun factor around it is quite interesting. The production house has not just copy-pasted content from the movie such as trailers and songs, but invested in creating a series of good original content. The short horror stories are a classic example.
Looking at Phobia’s digital promotions it will be right to say that finally, Indian production houses are stepping up the game of digital innovations in movie marketing.