During a recent visit to London, I thought it would be interesting to see how exhibitors set up their film marketing for up and coming movies. Armed with my iPhone 6 and a bottle of water I took to the streets of London and visited the following exhibitors: Leicester Square Cineworld, Leicester Square Vue, Picture House Central, Odeon Tottenham Court Road, Curzon Soho, Odeon Covent Garden.
So, what did I find? Well, there were a number of methods that were used throughout each venue to market the films.
1. Digital signage: There seems to be a move away from traditional posters and a move towards the digital variety. I wonder if distributors are able to pay extra for an increase in frequency? I found these a little frustrating to evidence. The reason for this was because, although there may have been (in some cases) 3-4 digital signs in one location, I found it difficult to watch a whole cycle.
The digital signs were either animated versions of the poster or a short, TV spot like, trailer. These did look very smart and certainly have a place. I am unsure on the impact that these have in attracting their audiences. What if you had just spotted an animated poster of Mission Impossible, are you going to stand there for 5 minutes whilst the other films rotate within the cycle? I wouldn’t. For this, I wish I had timed the time taken in which the cycle would then complete.
One of the most impressive scenes was the steps of the Leicester Square Cineworld , which was advertising Ant-Man and the Wasp movie. The combination of the illumined stairs and digital wall really made the animated signage stand out.
2. Posters: These were either in the ‘older’ exhibitor areas but mainly outside at the entrances. They would be typically placed above the times and/or price lists. These didn’t seem to be as popular as the digital signage in the cinemas that I visited, although they are prominent within my home cinemas (Cineworld Burton on Trent and Cineworld Chesterfield). Where they were located within the cinema, they were simply placed within the corridors where the screens are or within the reception areas; where there is room.
3. Leaflets / Postcards: I only found these within the Picture House Central cinema, although a number of other cinemas had the equivalent within their own newsletters or booklets. These are typically stationed around the confectionary sections or drinks stands where customers would be expected to wait for an extended period of time.
4. Concessions: We’ve all seen them, the little characters on top of the drinks and the masks that you can wear whilst pretending to be the latest member of the Incredibles. Well, I only found one example of these and they were to be Incredible 2’s Violet Parr. These were a little harder to take a picture of and I’m unsure what credibility I left with after asking one of the cinema workers to hold a few of them for me. Ah, Well. Anyway, these were located around the drinks section of the cinema.
So what did I learn from this experiment? Well, not only did I manage to walk around 3 miles and gain a little tan, it was also interesting to visit a number of exhibitors to see not only how they are advertising but also what they are advertising.
Click on the gallery below to view some of the images that I took during my visits.
Note: Permission was granted during each of the visits by the manager or duty manager of each exhibition.
This post was written by noxford