For this final unit forum, I had a difficult time deciding upon your assigned focus. On the one hand, I use these forums as a tool for ensuring you have consumed the unit content and that you understand it and can apply it. On the other hand, I want to hear your original thinking and ability to operate at a higher level. Your assignment is to write an essay (minimum 750 words) which describes the state of media as it relates to advertising in today’s age. In addition to assessing the relative necessity and value of traditional media, the assignment will require that you anticipate the impact of social and digital media now and over the relatively near future (say 5-10 years from now). You may need to use sources beyond those provided in your textbook. Remember to cite sources. Also, try to think holistically about media – from the role of advertising but also in terms of the 360 degree impact media has on its stakeholders.
Submitted by Amy Masters
Today, I believe the state of media is in transition between mass media advertising and new media outlets, specifically digital media. Traditional media will always be necessary within the advertising world, however their role is changing as technology persists to change audiences. As technology increases, new media outlets are emerging. Currently, digital media is beginning to be utilized for its potential—reaching the specific demographic of the majority of social media users, generation Y. Although media is beginning to change, it is important to remember that as long as we use the mediums mass media vehicles through, there will be a need for traditional media as well. For example, as long as there are numerous televisions in the typical household, there will be commercials. Even though the role of DVR is changing that outlet and will most likely continue to become even more customary as it has become a commodity for the typical, busy audience.
The Hunger Games
To show the impact of social media on current advertising, I am using “The Hunger Games” promotion strategy. They used Facebook, Twitter, custom websites, a YouTube channel, GetGlue, as well as more traditional media like poster giveaways, commercials, billboards, etc. Traditional media strategies used by the Hunger Games – “giving away 80,000 posters, securing almost 50 magazine cover stories, advertising on 3,000 billboards and bus shelters” (Barnes 2012).
Thirteen Facebook pages were used to represent each of the districts of the plot –“Fans could become virtual ‘ citizens’ of each district” (Ngak 2012). On March 30, 2012, the official Hunger Games Facebook page had 3,615,056 likes and 772,568 people talking about this (The Hunger Games Facebook Site https://www.facebook.com/
The Capitol of the plot had a Twitter account named @TheCapitolPN that assisted in giving the audience an experience of hearing from the dreaded, antagonist of the story. Using this Twitter account helped to keep character lines consistent and aided in giving the story a real-life feel. According to CBS News, “Hunger Games” had been mentioned as least one million times in just the last month of the article on Twitter (Ngak 2012). This was calculated by using tracking site Topsy.
“The Hunger Games” advertising plan also used a YouTube channel, iPhone games, Tumblr, a check-in application called GetGlue, and live Yahoo streaming from the premiere, in addition to their social media sites, to drive and maintain excitement and give the audience an outlet to make this story as real as possible. Ideally, they wanted to keep the audience as involved with the story as possible.
The marketing campaign for the movie cost less than is spent for most big movies with a budget of $45 million, compared to $100 million for most big movies. The budget has been able to remain so low because of the inexpensive digital media opportunities (Barnes 2012).
I think ‘The Hunger Games’ used digital media to target a particular age demographic for the movie. The age demographic used for this project will in the near future be the mainstream target audience for most media advertising. This makes me assume that digital media is yet at its potential and will take a major role in advertising in the near future.
I enjoyed a phrase that the New York Times article used to describe today’s movie marketing and the role of online marketing techniques—“ …using social media and blizzard of other inexpensive yet effective online techniques to pull off what may be the marketer’s ultimate trick: persuading fans to persuade each other” (Barnes 2012). In other words, personal interaction can be the more effective tool in advertising. Digital media lets you do just that, and in a very efficient means of cost at that.
Overall, the strategies used by “The Hunger Games”N marketing team are not revolutionary as these tactics have been used before. However, it is the combination of the elements used and the consistency of which that makes it successful. Also, the digital marketing outlets let a direct opportunity for interaction with their main target market, young adults. As technology advances and as the young adult generation gets older, they will soon be the mainstream audience of marketing practices showing a possibility for digital marketing to persist to further levels.
I think Twitter has far more potential in marketing than is being used right now. I can see the growth of Twitter being used on the same level as Facebook, but possibly have more impact on the marketing front. This is due to the lack of attention consistent in young generations responsible of the instant gratification lifestyle that we have. Because Twitter can contain information in short bits, easily readable and read frequently, and the ability of interaction between audiences gives the opportunity for concentration, instant gratification of information, and constant collaboration between users. I’m calling an increased used in the already-present involvement of airing TV shows and Twitter usage between contestants, hosts, celebrities, brands, and the audience (example—The Voice and Fashion Star). Also, I can see increased use of Twitter for branding in retail because it easily aids to lifestyle concepts they try to portray. Obviously, the example of The Hunger Games shows the effective use of digital marketing with movies so we can expect to see increased usage of Twitter and movie promotion strategies.
- Acuna, K. (2012). ‘The Hunger Games’ by the numbers: 20 marketing tactics to ensure success.Business Insider. Retrieved from http://www.
businessinsider.com/the- hunger-games-box-office-debut- will-marketing-will-2012-3
- Barnes, B. (2012). How ‘Hunger Games’ built up must-see fever. The New York Times. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/
2012/03/19/business/media/how- hunger-games-built-up-must- see-fever.html?_r=1& pagewanted=all
- Ngak, C. (2012). “The Hunger Games” marketing team turns to social media. CBS News. Retrieved from http://www.cbsnews.com/
8301-501465_162-57403323- 501465/the-hunger-games- marketing-team-turns-to- social-media/
- Shayon, S. (2012). The social marketing ninja behind The Hunger Games success. Brand Channel. Retrieved from http://www.brandchannel.
com/home/post/2012/03/28/The- Hunger-Games-Social-Marketing- 032812.aspx