The Basics: Facebook, Twitter, MySpace
Avatar has its own cara face book (), MySpace (), and Twitter () pages. That’s getting to be standard these days. The 18,000-follower Twitter account has tellingly not been updated since a few days after the film’s theatrical release; once the word was out, the job was done. While it was active, though, its followers would retweet updates to their followers, who (if interested) would do the same, spreading the word all over the web. The Facebook Page is even more impressive, with over 700,000 fans.
Facebook’s updated Page features make it the place to be for brands seeking exposure. The site allows brands to push updates to fans. Those fans see the updates in their personal news feeds, and they can then share them with others, just like on Twitter. Avatar’s Facebook Page is also where the MTV-hosted live webcast was hosted — more on that later.
Reinventing the Movie Trailer Online
Granted, Avatar wasn’t the first film to take its trailer in a new direction for the web. It actually wasn’t first at any of these things, but an expansive strategy combining many of the best existing ideas was what made the film’s social media campaign a success face facebook.
It started out with something a lot of movies do now: an Apple trailer debut, announced on Twitter. Anticipation was high enough that the servers struggled to get the video out to everyone who wanted it. A second trailer rolled out a month later. The web trailers gained additional buzz when fans remixed them and mashed them up with other movies, something that the folks behind the Avatar marketing machine smartly didn’t interfere with.
It was yet another trailer that impressed us the most, though. An interactive trailer was presented as an Adobe Air () application. It required a download, but it was worth it for Avatar fans. They could see featured content and they could read the latest social media updates about the movie from within the trailer. The stunt got press coverage and word-of-mouth buzz.
The Facebook and MTV Webcast
On December 3, MTV.com put together an Facebook-hosted, LG-sponsored webcast called “Avatar Live.” Director James Cameron, producer Jon Landau, and stars Sam Worthington and Zoe Saldana were interviewed by MTV News’ Josh Horowitz, but the questions were submitted by fans in the days leading up to the event.
The 30-minute interview might have been the most glamorous webcast to date; you just don’t see that many huge Hollywood names sit down to take questions from Internet fans all at once. Though community engagement from a director at that level is quite rare, we were reminded of Peter Jackson’s almost-daily video updates from the sets of The Lord of the Rings.
cara daftar In both cases, people who didn’t know much about the films tuned in and were sold on them. Existing fans became more passionate about spreading the word and showing up on opening night.
Broadcasting the Premiere Live On Ustream
The red carpet premiere of Avatar was broadcast live to web audiences on video streaming web site Ustream (). Apart from the tech media coverage this got, we’re not sure how much this helped put bums in the seats, and the Twilight () saga’s New Moon had already done the same thing, but it was neat. Any way you can expose audiences to your film certainly helps.
The broadcast’s sponsor was MySpace, so it reached an audience that might have been missed on Facebook. Fans could watch the video on the film’s MySpace page in addition to the Ustream website. The red carpet premiere came a week before the film hit theaters, so this was just one more way to generate buzz and get press in the final days leading up to the movie’s release.
Do you have any insights about promoting films and other media on the web? What are the best practices? Let us know in the comments.