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The movie that was watched “ironically”

What better way to advertise a movie than through parodies, allusions, video games and Jon Stewart references? Whatever your opinion, this is exactly what saved the potential failure known as Snakes on a Plane. In fact, New Line Cinema took their viral marketing efforts to a new level, by creating a promotional sweepstakes on the official Snakes on a Plane website that required contestants to post links on blogs, forums and other online networks, in order to spread the word about the movie and generate even greater hype.

Although the movie did not generate as much revenue as was expected (a difficult task considering the publicity associated with the movie), it is evident that their marketing efforts were nowhere short of astonishing. Months before the movie was released in cinemas, there were already blogs, Jon Stewart references, a music video and a novel dedicated to the movie. Fans even created trailers and promotional videos and uploaded them on YouTube, only to procure hundreds of thousands of views.

One of the most famous, or perhaps notorious examples of viral marketing, Snakes on a Plane demonstrates the information cascade model and informational network effects studied in class. The two decisions faced would be watching the movie and not watching the movie. The information cascade of the decision to watch the movie quickly formed as the movie gained more and more exposure through various types of media. After so much buildup and excitement about the movie, people who had no interest in the genre ended up watching it, and some “ironically” as one website puts it. As with many fashions, once a large enough percentage of the population buys something or watches a specific movie, there is pressure on those who have not seen the movie to watch it. Thus, regardless of whatever perception they had of the movie (i.e. their private signal), they would watch the movie to adhere to current trends (because the majority of the people before them chose to, and thus made it seem like the correct decision). The makers of the movie took advantage of this phenomenon by injecting promotions of the movie into various high social network potential media, such as comedy shows and online forums. Although it did not meet its expectations, the movie was still a success in that it has been five years since its release and still has people talking about it.


One Response to “ The movie that was watched “ironically” ”

  • Creative Admirer

    It’s not cool if you have to market your product under the radar to get it promoted but at the same time if people are going to see a movie just to follow a trend that is uncool too. I have always liked Samuel L. Jackson, which would have been the only reason I would have gone to see that film which I didn’t. When I pick films to talk about for my film blog I try to keep to a discussion that is fascinating so everyone can get into it. Yet at the same time I have always made it clear that if the topic doesn’t interest comment on something that does. Due to travel I had to look for a new provider and that was for mere necessity for certain technology to keep the blog going. It was a bit shocking that Comcast limits and doesn’t offering 100% digital programming. International channels are also limited and they don’t offer HD free for life. This will not do! Now I did find Dish Network offers more programming and movie channels for far less money plus a free Sling Adapter, which happens to fit my travel needs as I bring my services with me wherever I go. I ended up changing jobs and started working for Dish Network, still traveling but more frequently but armed with tools. With the new Blockbuster Movie Pass, which simply means Welcome Live Streaming and so many TV and movie options, I’m set! Now I am clear that whatever makes it easiest to work on my hobby while traveling and get great entertainment at an affordable price is what is necessary. It is important to me that there is happiness in my life and those counting on me. It’s interesting what you find when you actually take a minute and look around at the options available.

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