Cinema & Social Networks

Social networks are an important means by which to interact with people who share our interests. Thus, groups are formed dedicated to disseminating specialised information on different topics, providing a varied flow of information which strengthens links and contributions regarding the subject at hand. These groups are highly varied, and may cover subjects/demographics such as: pet lovers, gastronomy, sports, music, travel, adventure, decoration and others. Among these ‘others’ we can find topics related to film and television.

Here you can find groups populated by fans of old TV shows (for example - Star Trek, Coronation Street and Monty Python’s Flying Circus each maintain a healthy online fan base), as well as newer offerings such as Game of Thrones,  The Walking Dead and Stranger Things . All these shows have an established mythology created and/or accepted by the group, though the level of devotion to these programs of course varies. The same thing happens with cinema; fans display a level of devotion toward certain genres or even a specific film or series. There are also groups dedicated to sagas such as Star Wars, The Lord of the Rings, Indiana Jones or - one of the most popular - Harry Potter. It is interesting to observe what happens with these fan pages and their interaction; they are all seemingly hunting for information, or looking for some extra detail to feel special. This is something that the studios take great advantage of to create fidelity. Now the film studios market the movies through these networks, giving very specific details about the performance, exclusive interviews and behind-the-scenes extras that make us feel closer to the product.

The circuit used to promote a film is currently varied, incorporating exclusive events, premieres in different cities, interviews, and advertising across all media. We can buy the soundtrack, books and related comics, video games, action figures, toys, promotional clothing and even food and drinks related to the title. It is a great mechanic that is used to great effect by these studios in their quest to capture the interest of the public.

Information and commercial offers flood the networks with colourful ads. We must watch the movie, buy the music, have the action figures and the books, wear the clothes of the film while we play the video game eating a hamburger and a soda that promote the title.

So how can an outsider to this fandom use these communities to sell a product? The key is to get a little creative. For example, if we are before fans of Star Wars we can sell products that tie in references to this mythology. For instance a dog groomer may promote their services using a tagline along the lines of, “Han, don’t be ‘Solo’, walk in the street with your dog in Chewbacca fashion”. This is just to give an example of how important it is to know your audience and their interests.

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