If you have watched Kiran Rao’s Dhobi Ghat then her second film Ship of Theseus holds promise of intrigue and visual delight. Rao known for her offbeat marketing strategies takes the offbeat route with the promotion of this film too. “Vote for your city” is one such campaign, which is an integral part of the film’s digital campaign.
Ship of Theseus is due to release on July 19, 2013 in India, after having performed very well in the global film festival circuits and winning prestigious accolades.
Disney UTV Studios has planned the release of the film in five cities – NCR, Mumbai, Pune, Bangalore and Kolkata. Through the “Vote for your city” digital campaign, film buffs across India can get the film released in their city via an online voting mechanism on Facebook.
To participate you can log on to Facebook and vote for your city from the list provided or add your city and get a chance to watch the movie on home ground. Even non-Facebook users can participate in the activity. This is the first time that a studio in the country is giving its audiences a chance to choose and decide the release of a movie in their city. One you vote for your city the voting results pop up on the screen.
The Twitter handle of the Ship of Theseus along with the Facebook page is buzzing with little snippets of information about the film, its plot and its characters.
This campaign is pioneering as it is the first time that a studio in the country is giving its audiences a chance to choose and decide the release of a movie in their city. By keeping the campaign open to non-Facebook users it has widened its reach and this is really something worth appreciating.
You can see the voting results which again is a huge plus.
The strategy behind the campaign was to not limit the release of the film based on any pre-conceived notions and instead have the audiences make that choice for themselves. Thus it puts power in the hands of the people.
The promotion of the Ship of Theseus, mainly directs all efforts on the online medium. The underlying theme of marketing for this film is ‘Think about it’ and all content has been created with this end in mind. By posing questions to engage with people on social media platforms the idea is to get people to think. It is well integrated along Facebook, Twitter (993 tweets, 514 followers) and YouTube (2,65,613 views).
Extensive on-ground activation at places such as art galleries, cafes and restaurants, colleges and theatres takes care of the offline integration element in marketing plan of the film.
It has also been reported that Kiran Rao along with Anand Gandhi, the director of the movie, have hired a group of enthusiastic management graduates from various management colleges to work on promoting the film over a period of two months to help promote the film.
Scope for Improvement:
A path breaking, different digital campaign, which has its online and offline integration in place which is why I cannot come up with any real room for improvement on this one.
More power to the people is what this campaign propounds. It extends the film’s offbeat theme to its release which is the starting point of interest for audiences.
Something that stands out in a milieu of promotional campaigns by film makers, this digital campaign with its multi pronged approach offers lots to learn from.