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Cinema marketing in USA

The paper overviews the basic phases and principles of cinema marketing in USA. In the Addenda, the particular case of the highly succesfull marketing of Jurassic Park is presented.

As in other provinces, cinema industry marketing has gained in importance in the last few decades. Marketing departments become more powerful then studio bosses, and numerous film productions offer the possibility of high creative achievements in marketing design. It is not wrong to assert that marketing has become the new art of the end of twentieth century. Marketing begins long before the the very shooting of the film, and it greatly influences the production of film (script choice and preparation, choice of actors and title). Basic defining marketing »factors« are, first, film itself (the product), second, the distributors, and, third, the pomotional campaign. Each of these has its own particular marketing aspect. In the »product« phase, the nature of the film is stated, its target audience, its title, and its possible »buyers« (producers and distributors, the cinemas, and the audience).

In a distribution phase, the important aspects are the choice of the distributor, distributing plan, film royalties, and timing of the premiere. Promotion phase comprises the timing of promotion (well before the premiere), design of the promotional materials (one-sheets, posters, trailers, EPK, stand-ups, tickets, giveaways), preview and publicity, premiere, video-premiere, etc. Though the film itself is highly important for its market success (and the unfavorable »word of mouth« can render inefficient the best marketing campaign), without developed marketing the film has feeble chances on the world market today. US market experts even assert that, from the marketing point of view, to achieve the high income with the premiere and the first few days of the film run is not a problem anymore, but the maintenance of the high audience attendance in longer run (few weeks) is highly difficult problem, and then the qualities of the film itself become more important.

Igor Tomljanović

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