MEDIA/ENTERTAINMENT/ TRAVEL & LEISURE
20th Century Fox
Despite being part of the popular superhero cannon, the latest Marvel film Deadpool had some challenges. As it was classified MA15+ the typical superhero film family audience couldn’t watch it and the character was relatively unknown outside of superhero fans. The film was also launching on the same opening weekend as Zoolander 2. Despite this, 20th Century Fox wanted Deadpool to launch with a bang, eyeing $12 million at the box office and to have more interest than Zoolander 2.
Zenith started with the insight that 50% of cinema−goers were tired of the same superheroes and fans love it when characters break the fourth wall. The launch also followed Australia Day, one of the biggest events on the calendar. Therefore the strategy was to tie these elements together with a launch on Australia Day. Given its MA15+ rating, two new target audiences were created: non-family 25 years + and outrageous comedy fans who were aged 16+. Both groups of audiences shared a love of adolescent humour and digital media. To target these groups, the campaign used a humorous Australia Day video message from the Deadpool character, talking about the quirky Australian things he loved. In order to reach Deadpool’s digital audience, the video was seeded on YouTube and Facebook, targeting fans of outrageous comedy. In addition, the agency worked with Fox publicity to help it go viral across media outlets. In addition, promos appeared in areas surrounding key passion points of the target audience including outdoor stadiums, late night TV spots and tailored artist takeovers on Vevo. And Zenith partnered with IGN to give fans a special preview screening before the national release to build hype.
Deadpool was the biggest MA15+ and February release ever, pulling in $43 million at the box office. It also had the biggest superhero cinematic debut surpassing Iron Man, Thor and Captain America. It made six times more money than Zoolander 2 and exceeded searches made for its competition. The Australia Day video had 13.2 million views and generated $7 million in added value publicity. The video also outperformed its official trailer with 13.2 million from 675,000 views. The campaign also connected the film with its target audience: 90% of its viewers didn’t have kids and a further 31% were new superhero fans.
“A smart insight that taps into the Australian psyche in a unique and humorous way. The strategy and content resonated with the audience and delivered sensational results. An incredibly well written and articulate entry.”