Monday, June 29, 2009

A New Interstellar and Online Community (at the same time!)

Seems like the last time we talked about Peter Jackson, it was surrounding his fantastic revival of Tolkien's Middle Earth - a peculiar world populated by men, women, dwarfs, elves, orcs, giant smouldering cave monsters and hobbits (among others).

Now Jackson's about to invite us to observe a new community by creating yet another new world. This one seems set to be steeped deep with Swift-like satire. District 9 is a new sci-fi movie set to hit theatres in August. The story is about a community of interstellar refugees who come to Earth and are marooned here. They're isolated by our government in District 9 - a slum in Africa (see some metaphoric connections??) where they're hated by locals and managed with less and less patience by world governments. Check out this trailer for the film:

I've got to hand it to the marketing guys who're developing this campaign. They've already created three YouTube videos, twitter feeds, facebook pages, and almost four separate websites, including one for the MNU (the company contracted to guard humans areas from alien contamination), the Everyone Deserves Equality blog (which has articles written by aliens and alien-supporters), Math from Outer Space (self-evident), and then large topographical maps detailing the breadth of District 9.

Hustling up excitement in the online and movie going community isn't anything new (see the "I Believe in Harvey Dent" campaign websites used in the lead up to the Dark Knight). But by doing it in an effective and all encompassing way, Jackson is charting into new water. If their use of social media and multiple online portals works to galvanize movie fans and whip up online hype (and thus offline theatre line-up hype) - we may see this creative marketing strategy become increasingly prominent for everything from upcoming features to toothpaste.

That might mean the TV and radio ad heavy buys might be a thing of the past to be supplanted by an increasing reliance on social media and online community creation to get out the word about products.


John Horn said...

I don't really like how your insertion of media has spilled over into our supercool ad-space and link-margin. I will, however, blame and not you, Kurt Buddy.

And, yes, viral marketing - and mobile marketing - is totally the way to go. In fact, many post-secondary institutions are allowing their current students and alumni to download content and create their own message that will, ideally, entice future students to attend the school. Results aren't totally in yet, but the idea is catching fire. It's where the future is going...


Kurt Heinrich said...

Definitely where the future's at. Unlike Blogger's graphically challenged format.