Hollywood movie channels use conventional content to engage users on social platforms such as Facebook and Twitter, leaving less space for innovation. Sony Pix wanted a novel engagement strategy for their social presence. The challenge was to create unique content and break away from the clutter.
Sony PIX was promoting the first “Interactive Premiere” of Hollywood blockbuster MIB 3 on Indian TV screens. Our task was to promulgate the interactive premier with an unconventional content strategy that educates and engages users.
MIB3 is all about aliens. But Indians seldom relate to the concept of aliens and the majority is ignorant about them. The insight was to introduce aliens via colloquial references and get users to interact with the premiere. Our approach towards aliens was unconventional. We took the liberty to establish humans with unearthly behaviour as aliens – be it pan-spitting individuals or rickshaw drivers who refuse to ferry people around. We labelled humans with unruly behaviour as ‘aliens’.
Instead of creating regular content buckets a guerrilla marketing approach was chosen. In a bid to create curiosity 10th March (the day of the MIB 3 premiere) was branded as ‘Anti-Alien Day’. The campaign was divided into 3 phases – Teaser, Sustenance and Reveal. The strategy was to create a buzz around aliens and in turn promoting the premier.
Characters sporting quirky names and varied ‘alien’ traits were created. For example, Pan Thookiya (Red spitter-us) was a character that loved painting the town red by spitting tobacco. Over 10 days, 8 characters with unruly behaviour were introduced via Facebook posts. Simultaneously, a Twitter contest urging users to get rid of these aliens by re-tweeting was launched. To add to the momentum, in the second phase, a Facebook app was created. The app let users eliminate aliens by sharing, commenting and tagging, thus creating a buzz. The user could eliminate 2 aliens every day. After 10 days of alien-busting, MIB3 premiere date was revealed. The next 5 days focused on content around film-trivia.
- The campaign took an unconventional approach to create a buzz.
- On Facebook, the campaign went viral and accomplished a 6.5% growth in fans while ‘Talking about’ reached 108,000. The figures represent a very positive interaction among fans. There were a total of 66,000+ likes and 3,000+ comments in just 7 days.
- Followers for the SonyPIX Twitter account went up by 8% in 15 days. The interaction witnessed a total of 2,700+ replies, 3,300+ re-tweets and 6,600+ mentions. The reach went beyond 305,000 and the hashtag #PIXAntialien trended globally on 1st March 2013 and 2nd and 4th March 2013 in India.