Movie trailers confronted with new challenge
“I love trailers! That’s my favorite part of going to the movies.”Most people have heard this quote, or something to that extent, as many moviegoers love seeing the previews as much as they love seeing the movie. In a time before the Internet, trailers existed as a special preview of upcoming films and had a sense of exclusivity. Now, people can watch trailers on their computer screens from the comfort of their own homes.
It’s no wonder trailers are so popular. All the best parts of a movie are wrapped up in a delightful two-and-a-half minute film. Busy people can go ahead and move on with the rest of their lives, or onto another trailer. Other products have seen the attraction of movie trailers and built it into their own marketing. Marvel comics uses trailers to advertise its comic books online.
There are countless Web sites now specifically devoted to trailers, including those through Apple.com, ComingSoon.net, TrailerAddict.com, Spout.com and official movie sites themselves. Trailers not only serve as a preview of movies currently showing, but rather as a measure of whether or not one will see a movie. Along with their easy accessibility across the Internet, marketers and trailer makers have to ensure their trailers are tailored to stand out.
But now is a time when showing all the sex, violence and slapstick scenes may not be considered standing out. Those methods have become so commonplace that now many people are becoming disinterested with them. Here are a few thoughts to consider for trailer making and marketing, with an emphasis on the college demographic:
1. When trying to attract the college demographic with a trailer, make sure the movie is for that audience. Though it may seem like a basic rule of thumb, sometimes it doesn’t happen. If someone sees a movie because the trailer contained every funny part, but it’s really a drama, the viewer will not be happy. Viewers will always gladly share how bad the movie is with their friends.
2. Try to include some interactivity. This may not be experimented with much yet, but most successful marketing now features two-way communication between a provider and a customer. With the power of the Internet, this has a new reality and possibility. Let viewers have an impact on what they see within a trailer, not just if it’s a green or red band. (Trailers have ratings determined by the Motion Picture Association of America. Green band is for all audiences, yellow band is for age-appropriate Internet users and red band is for restricted audiences only.)
3. Put trailers in unlikely places. Although the younger demographic may enjoy trailers, watching them is not always a top priority. While having a trailer site is essential, it’s kind of like having a site specifically devoted to advertisements. It appeals only to a small, specific audience, whereas trailers can attract the masses. It could be something as crazy as having trailers show on GPS systems during long spans of driving and specifically tailoring them to a driver’s movie preferences. Just put it somewhere that will make people tune in, not out.