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Marketing Lessons from Hollywood (Part II)

They say sequels are never as good as the original but have a gander at these 3 additional lessons you can learn from the typical Hollywood blockbuster, and decide for yourself:

  1. Repurpose your content

As the old adage goes, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. Hollywood has been adhering to this sentiment for the last few decades, revisiting and reformatting existing content as remakes, reboots and sequels.

This technique has proven to be a big hit at the box office, with the 2014 remake of Godzilla raking in over $500 million. While Godzilla was far from original, you can’t scoff at those numbers!

This concept can certainly be adapted for local marketing, with blogs and printed content given new life in the shape of videos and podcasts. Here at JPIMedia Local, we recently introduced Social Display to our list of products and services, where we integrate our client’s best social media posts with our local news websites. This alternative method of repurposing content allows our clients to reach new customers and promote their business more widely.

We recently helped Stringers Lytham, a local department store, drive more traffic to their website through a Social Display campaign, which we ran across our local news websites, and which was seen over 46,000 times.

  1. Themed content

FIlms are being produced at a faster rate than ever before, with even the biggest studios struggling to compete. As a result, reaching audiences on an emotional level has proved to be a successful tactic, with nostalgia and seasonal sentiment encouraging audiences to connect. Reboots such as Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Power Rangers owed much of their success to their predecessors, with the audience’s love for the original largely outweighing their cynicism for the reboot.

Modern marketing has used this sentiment on a large bulk of popular advertising. Both Spotify and Coca Cola have created successful campaigns with seasonal and nostalgic themes. Spotify’s 80s-themed Neverending Story television advert showcased the era as well as how the music platform can help audiences relive it. Coca-Cola, on the other hand, is a brand that has always worn its heart on its sleeve, with its annual Christmas adverts playing on not only its audience’s holiday spirit but their long-lived loyalty to the brand.

For local businesses, local nostalgia is a more effective way of inspiring connections with the community. During the holidays, focussing your content on local seasonal events could encourage your audiences to get involved. For example, a restaurant could get involved in a seasonal food festival to reach local consumers.

  1. Have fun with the customer

Since social media found its voice, Hollywood has found ways to extend its relationship with the customer. Fictional characters have become 3 dimensional, with interactions curated by the studio between them and their audiences. The Marvel studio film series, The Avengers, for example, promoted the social hashtag #ThanosDemandsYourSilence to stop audiences (and cast members) revealing important plot points. This social tag not only formed an interaction between audiences and the studio but also, most importantly, generated curiosity and interest in the film.

Rather than inviting audiences into the marketing process, some studios have preferred to subvert it. Another film from the Marvel studios, Deadpool 2, went as far to produce ‘fake’ movie posters for the film. These posters promoted the violent, R-rated comic book movie as a romantic comedy (even releasing it on Valentine’s Day). Normally audiences would have resented the deception, but it instead became an in-joke with the film’s fans, who recognised the comparable sense of humour between the campaign and the movie’s titular character.

While yes, marketing is about making a sale, not taking the process too seriously can ensure the customer engages with your company as well as what you can sell them. Something as small as branded hashtags, photo competitions, product giveaways and even a fun tone of voice can inspire audiences to interact.


Cinema is an important component of our everyday life, teaching us how to laugh, cry and create a successful marketing campaign. In the end, however, everything lies in the truth of the product. If you have a solid product and a clear brand story that people can trust, your marketing campaign will be a smash hit.

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