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Business News/ Industry / Media/  Content studios, OTT services tap short-video platforms for marketing campaigns

Content studios, OTT services tap short-video platforms for marketing campaigns

Such platforms offer packages based on marketing demands, and production houses are charged accordingly, especially for specific content creation with creators and branded partnerships.

These partnerships can extend from songs to dialogue launches, especially helping reach in tier-two and tier-three towns. (Bloomberg)Premium
These partnerships can extend from songs to dialogue launches, especially helping reach in tier-two and tier-three towns. (Bloomberg)

NEW DELHI : Content studios and streaming services are increasingly tying up with popular short-video platforms such as Chingari, Roposo, FilterCopy and Instagram Reels to reach a large base of audiences spread across the country and create hype in the run-up to the release of their shows and films.

The loyal fan-following of these platforms serves as a ready base of young, digitally-savvy audience, and creators who are often seen collaborating with lead stars pitch in with innovative concepts for short clips that grab viewer attention instantly. These partnerships can extend from songs to dialogue launches, helping boost reach in tier-two and tier-three towns in particular.

Several film studios and marketing professionals emphasize it's time to align campaign strategies with evolving audience tastes, go slow on traditional-media interactions and public appearances, and leverage social media not just for advertising, but also to be part of the film or create content around it.

This growing trend of leveraging social media for marketing campaigns comes at a time several production companies are trying to control costs.

“Movie marketers and their partnership teams are constantly seeking large reach and deep engagement for their movie slates and characters, along with entertaining, innovative, and clutter-breaking promotion approaches. Live-streaming has gained immense traction as a medium to connect with target audiences, especially the younger generations," Mansi Jain, senior vice-president and general manager of Roposo, said.

Such partnerships have grown from 1-2 per month in 2020 during the pandemic, to 5-6 now, Jain added.

The shoppertainment platform has collaborated on movies such as Gadar 2, Fighter, Tiger 3, Dream Girl 2, Drishyam 2, Vikram Vedha, besides shows like Koffee With Karan Season 8 and The Trial on Disney+ Hotstar, Guns & Gulaabs on Netflix along with some shows of Amazon miniTV. It has alliances with production houses like Yash Raj Films, Viacom18 Studios, Reliance Entertainment, Zee Studios, Balaji Motion Pictures, Pooja Entertainment and Maddock Films.

Film studios and marketing teams partner short-video platforms to reach a wider viewer base across cities and small towns efficiently, said Sumit Ghosh, CEO and co-founder, Chingari. Short videos enable multiple campaigns, promoting songs and dialogues, helping the content to go viral and increasing movie recall, Ghosh said, adding that the trend has seen a rapid growth, with short-video platforms evolving into live-streaming platforms as well.

Such platforms offer packages based on marketing demands, and production houses are charged accordingly, especially for specific content creation with creators and branded partnerships. Creators are compensated through various means, including monetary benefits, film vouchers, merchandise, celebrity interviews, or content creation opportunities, Ghosh added.

Chingari has collaborated on marketing campaigns of several films and OTT movie releases, including Laxmii, Drishyam 2, Mission Majnu, Maarrich, Double XL, Doctor G, Middle Class Love, Cuttputlli, Dobaaraa, The Legend, Khuda Haafiz 2, Goodbye, Main Monica, Khichdi 2 and others. The platform pitches ideas based on the film's marketing specifications and executes plans accordingly.

GBS Bindra, chief business officer at Hipi said in India, music has always played a big role in the promotion of a movie. "Consumption patterns evolve all the time , and in the past two years people have started to discover new music with-in short video platforms. These platforms have become part of de facto marketing strategy for music labels and movie production houses to introduce audiences to their music and movie releases," Bindra added. 

Dedicated hashtag challenges are introduced around creating content using popular songs of the movie, dance hook steps or a dialogue on Hipi.

Paras Sharma, director and head of content and community partnerships at Meta added that while the company's primary surfaces like Feed and Stories have been used by many (content creators), it has also introduced innovative features like AR effects, Channels and Notes to stay ahead of the curve.

To be sure, digital media is now a key component of marketing strategy for films and shows. Filmmakers are increasingly making data-driven decisions, and are cautious to not splurge money but direct it to the right mediums, according to industry experts. Vishwanath Shetty, business head at digital entertainment company Pocket Aces, said that from an ROI (return on investment) perspective, short videos help to both build traffic and inform audiences to tune into a particular show or movie. “There is so much clutter in terms of new releases that this could be a unique way to reach out to audiences," Shetty said. The company has collaborated with streaming platforms like Netflix and Amazon Prime Video for collaborations across FilterCopy, its short content vertical and Gobble, the lifestyle channel it runs.

“Engagement metrics on short format platforms are incredibly high, since they tap into their highly active and diverse user base, making them ideal for viral marketing. Short audio or video content is also more shareable and has the potential to quickly become part of the cultural conversation, sparking memes and trends. This not only amplifies the reach of the films or shows being marketed, but also embeds them more deeply into popular culture," said Niyati Merchant, co-founder and chief operating officer at Arré, a content company which specialises in audio, text as well as short- and long-form videos.

Arré's content collaborations have ranged from original content such as long-form essays and doodles to thematically capture the essence of a movie or show, short-video sketches, spoofs, commentary featuring the cast, to interview-based formats and music videos that are amplified across its social media channels. Campaigns have also been carried out recently with creators on Arré Voice, its women-first short-audio social app, in the form of sponsored contests, challenges, show or movie-themed conversations and original content from creators via 30-second voicepods.

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Lata Jha
Lata writes about the media and entertainment industry for Mint, focusing on everything from traditional film and TV to newer areas like video and audio streaming, including the business and regulatory aspects of both. She loves movies and spends a lot of her free time in theatres, which makes her job both fun and a bit of a challenge given that entertainment news often just talks about the glamorous side of things. Lata, on the other hand, tries to find and report on themes and trends in the entertainment world that most people don't notice, even though a lot of people in her country are really into movies. She’s a graduate of the Columbia School of Journalism.
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Published: 01 Apr 2024, 04:13 PM IST
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