How @Marvel Perfected the Integrated Social Campaign
It’s no secret that Marvel Entertainment — the Disney-owned entertainment company known for its Marvel Comics subsidiary — is masterful at integrated social marketing, but their efforts around the upcoming The Avengers: Age of Ultron movie (release date: May 1) shows particular, multi-channel ingenuity.
Marvel has driven over 71 million views of the teaser trailer alone — an impressive lift even by super hero standards.
So how does a brand harness all its individually strong social properties to bolster one mega release? Which lessons can your brand, big or small, learn from Marvel’s expertise at brand awareness? Read on to find out.
Set It Up
Marvel’s popular Agents of SHIELD TV show has been setting viewers up for the upcoming Avengers movie, providing back story and using the #ItsAllConnected hashtag on Twitter to show the link between both properties.
— Agents of SHIELD (@AgentsofSHIELD) April 19, 2015
Knowing that its audiences for the show and the movie are a perfect overlap, Marvel builds excitement for Agents of SHIELD and the Avengers movie simultaneously. Everybody wins.
Live Access to Related Events on Social
@Marvel‘s most engaging Tweet between April 13-20 was this one:
— Marvel Entertainment (@Marvel) April 13, 2015
This kind of content builds awareness by giving followers immediate, live access to a major movie-related event (especially relevant in the age of Periscope and Meerkat), and reminds the public that Avenger: Age of Ultron is hitting theaters soon.
Another major piece of engaging content for Marvel between April 13-20 was included in this Tweet.
— Marvel Entertainment (@Marvel) April 15, 2015
Providing followers with exclusive supplementary content is a great way to keep social followers paying attention and, more importantly, engaged with your brand in the days leading up to your big release.
Pro tip: Always couple your content with a reminder of the exact date (and time, if that’s relevant) that your product becomes available.
Marvel’s been experiencing a lot of engagement success by partnering with other companies and publicizing product releases in the weeks leading up to the worldwide movie premiere.
— Marvel Entertainment (@Marvel) April 14, 2015
By creating social content around these limited-release collectibles, Marvel continues to generate buzz and awareness for Avengers: Age of Ultron.
Get All Your Brands Involved
While the @Avengers handle has the most followers and engagement (1,374,382 followers and 182,497 in total engagement between April 13-20), @Iron_Man, @CaptainAmerica, @ThorMovies, and @Hulk are all doing their part, too, mostly by retweeting @Avengers content:
By involving all their relevant superhero brands on Twitter, Marvel is able to spread awareness of its movie release to more people than it otherwise would be able to.
What Your Brand Can Learn
1. Make the connection. If you have a brand with an audience that you suspect might intersect with the audience of the brand you’re trying to spread awareness for, run an analysis of both brands’ social audiences. If your suspicions are correct, use one social brand to bolster the other.
2. Experiment with live content. A lot of brands are doing this with Periscope and Meerkat. Don’t be afraid to get your feet wet at the lead-up event to your big product release.
3. Ain’t no party like an exclusive content party. Giving your social followers an exclusive and/or behind-the-scenes view into a world they’re interested in is an invaluable way of keeping your brand top-of-mind with your desired audience.
4. Make a mini-release. On your way to the big release, fill your social feeds with well-timed mini-releases of products or even blog post links that support your major release.
5. Amplify reach with secondary handles. And even consider creating relevant, product-based handles just for this release.
How does your brand run an integrated social marketing campaign? What lessons have you learned along the way? Let us know in the comments below.
And if you want to know about what makes a good hashtag campaign tick, click through below for our gold-standard guide to all things hashtag-related.
I’m the Head of Marketing Communications here at Simply Measured, where I'm responsible for our content program, social media marketing, PR, and comarketing ventures. I love yoga, The X-Files, peaty scotch, hiking, and poetry. If I were a social media channel, I’d want to be Instagram, but I think I’m Twitter.