opinion column uk

What the UK can learn from the Hollywood marketing machine

The Hollywood marketing power

The marketing prowess of Hollywood is something that has dominated channels of communication for decades. The spectacular array of Hollywood blockbusters marketed internationally continues and thrives in a world where digital is king.

The UK industries are ideally placed to make international films at home but let's be honest, we are finding it hard to export 'British blockbusters' abroad. Co-productions are great, and the mix of Hollywood and UK talent has never been so rewarding, but, I think there is something we can learn from our friends abroad.

If we take a look at the investment made in these larger blockbuster films, we can see just how much time, energy and focus is placed into digital marketing and traditional advertising. From comprehensive websites to entire online digital fan resources for new releases, Hollywood know how to build momentum. Big productions also do extensive research on how to reach and excite fans, and potential audiences for a film through trailers, events, public promotions and more.

Hollywood innovation doesn't stop in post-production. Some of the campaigns we've seen for films like 'Pirates of The Caribbean' and 'The Da Vinci Code' have cost millions, and there is a big investment in promotion that perhaps the UK is not ready to make.

'The Dark Knight Rises' has dominated the web for the past 6 months, but that has also come at a cost. There is a careful relationship building process between the studios and journalists, bloggers, fan bases and more. This creates the viral basis of online 'digital conversations'.

How can we take this onboard to make UK films have more international visibility? Success leaves clues and there's no reason why we can't do the same. The UK Film Industry is at a turning point in 2012 and it's time to think big. It all comes down to how much investment is available for marketing a film. I hope more focus is put in this area because if people don't know what films are coming out, why would they ever go to see them?

film industry network members