TikTok helps Hollywood catch repeat business
The Future. TikTok has become a key marketing destination for Hollywood, especially if it’s hoping to capture a younger audience. There’s no hard data for it yet, but it looks like the platform drove Spider-Man: No Way Home’s outsized success in the middle of a pandemic. In the age of cord-cutting, the entertainment industry may look at TikTok ads the way they used to look at broadcast TV spots.
All the eyeballs
If you want Gen Z to show up to your movie, there’s really only one platform you need to market on.
- According to a study from GoodQues, TikTok was cited as the “No. 1 activity for U.S. entertainment viewers 18 and older when they have an hour to spare” other than streaming.
- 58% of respondents said that they are “interested” or “very interested” in seeing more content from film and TV studios on the platform.
- A Kanter study found that TikTok users exposed to ads on the platform almost doubled (from 19% to 37%) between 2020 and 2021.
- A separate study from TikTok found that 41% of users look up where they can see a movie in theaters when they see an ad on the platform. 26% will actually buy tickets.
The GoodQues study also found that 69% said they have “co-created” content related to a new show or movie using features such as “Stitch” and “Duet.” It seems that the power of TikTok is due to its ability to spur what TikTok itself calls “community-generated entertainment.”
Spider-Man: Please Leave Home
So what are studios doing with this Gen Z gold mine? In Sony’s case, it invested heavily in the platform to market Spider-Man: No Way Home… especially considering the popularity of its stars Tom Holland and Zendaya.
- The studio set up the Daily Bugle (the NYT of Peter Parker’s New York) as a destination within the app.
- It gave influencer Michael Le a walk-on role in the movie and then let him share his experience just before the movie opened.
- It strongly encouraged users to lean in to “community-generated content,” which led to increased engagement.
What Sony really wanted to encourage was real-life theater traffic. And audiences listened — the movie has made $688.7 million domestically, making it the sixth-highest grossing film in the U.S. ever.