We trace the use of various visual assets and thematic consistency in the post-release social media marketing strategy of Bulbbul.
The shelf life of an OTT movie release is considerably more than that of a theatrical release. Marketing it over social media brings forth the unique challenges and opportunities. Various assets can be released, consistently over a course of time, to keep up the momentum post-release. They get more and more personal and narrational over time, as the first wave of awe and surprise about the storyline wears off, getting replaced by conversations among viewers and stories of impact. We take a look at the phenomenon through the lens of Bulbbul and its social media strategy.
Bulbbul is a Clean Slate Films production that was released on Netflix India on June 24, 2020. Here, the focus will be on the post-release timeline of significant content pieces and how visuals assets and consistency was used by the marketing team to strike a chord on social media.
Acknowledging and celebrating appreciative art towards a new release is not only a great way to support and encourage artists but also to leverage their channels for promotions. To get this right, one of the main elements is to have a thematic consistency in all your posts that other artists can include in their work.
The dark, smoky, reddish hues used in promotions have been so consistent that they were easy to replicate for others, making it easy for the production house to share it. On June 26, two days post-release, Clean Slate Films shared a creative by Studio Fiction.
On June 29, Tripti Dimri penned a personal note about how she grew up into a confident young woman, battling her childhood and teenage insecurities along the way. Similar posts were put up by producer Anushka Sharma and actor Paoli Dam, on the same day. These posts, by prominent female faces associated with the movie, helped add a personal touch to the marketing efforts involved in promoting the movie. And, they are in sync with the overarching theme of a girl’s journey into womanhood.
Deep dive into the characters
Since the beginning of July, the production house has been sharing posters and videos (that use a mix of real imagery and animation) to promote the storylines and significance of individual characters. While in the case of Binodini, the video asset spills out her entire character arc, the treatment for Indranil is comparatively subtle.
In either case, the viewer would be able to truly appreciate the brilliance of the creative and the details put into it, after they have seen the movie, propelling related conversations.
Adding value with tidbits
Another set of posts the production house has been putting up since the beginning of July are small snippets of information about the show, behind-the-scenes and makers under ‘Did You Know?’. Such posts help add depth to the experience and make it an enriching experience for the viewers.
The trick lies in choosing the fact that is truly awe-inducing. For example, the production house recently shared for Bulbbul was 12 years in the making.
Moments and memes
Moment marketing and memes are key to keep up the momentum for all entities, big and small, on social media. Towards mid-July (July 13 and July 14), Clean Slate Films shared two memes on Instagram, in sync with popular conversations and templates of the time. They depicted four consecutive emojis with the third one being a typo to reflect on how Satya is a pure soul and the supernatural element — the woman around which the story revolves — is to be afraid of.
Though these strategies are not entirely new as they have been tried for theatrical releases before, the differentiation comes from the fact that these are shareable assets that can direct people to watch the movie on Netflix, an OTT platform. They are not merely promotional assets, their shareability is a major factor in their contribution to the movie’s success. And, they have to be consistent if they wish people to be invested in the narrative despite shot attention spans, reeling them in to watch it at any time as they see fit.