It shouldn’t have been made. All the signs pointed in the wrong direction and fate was not on their side. But after 10 years of blood, sweat and sticking it to the animal, 20th Century Fox eventually gave in and green lit a movie that would become the highest grossing R-rated film of all time – Deadpool. But in order to get people to buy tickets, the marketing team needed to go all out, guns swinging with a bullet-proof marketing campaign. And some of the ingenious stunts they pulled shows us just how creative you can get when it comes to selling a product. With the recent release of Deadpool 2, let’s take a look at how the team marketed these movies.
Find the Right Spokesperson & Collabagreat
When talking to your audience, it’s important you establish a strong and personal relationship. One reason why Deadpool is such a unique and enjoyable character to watch is he consistently breaks the 4th wall and invites his fans in. Forget about whatever else is going on in the scene, he’s talking to YOU. This has a powerful effect on viewers as they share these intimate moments. Both Ryan Reynolds and Deadpool ooze sarcastic charm so naturally you enjoy time spent with him.
And when choosing who best to align with to sell your movie you always want to pick a popular and influential spokesperson. So when Deadpool 2 dropped a David Beckham/Deadpool collaboration, both men and women all over the world clicked play. Not only is he one of the best soccer players to grace the green field, he’s a global charity ambassador, a fashion icon and married to Posh Spice.
Follow The Leader
Playing the social game is integral to any marketing campaign. But what makes Deadpool’s social media pages so appealing is it feels like he’s in control, not the marketers. Every post, tweet, thought or meme that hits social could have come directly from Deadpool himself, which gives these a high level of authenticity. When you’ve successfully accumulated a following of 878,000 Twitter followers and 2.8 million Instagram subscribers, you know people are interested. Deadpool even had his own Tinder page. Now that would be some date.
Do the Unexpected
When would be the best time to release an R-rated, violent, foul mouthed film? That’s right, just in time for Valentines Day. Couples all over the world ditched the traditional rom-com screening and turned to something a little more edgy. Target both demographics, and double your revenue.
Deadpool has starred in 2 movies to date (let’s forget about his appearance in X-Men Origins: Wolverine). Or has he? This year, the Merc with the Mouth successfully infiltrated Walmart stores across the US and appeared on iconic DVD covers such as The Terminator, Fight Club and Castaway. No matter what movie you planned to watch that evening, Deadpool was in it.
See the Movies
Ryan Reynolds’ passion project came to life. He believed in the movie and even though Fox were originally reluctant to commit, they were eventually rewarded with two end products that have grossed over 1 billion USD worldwide. Sometimes it’s about taking risks and doing the unthinkable. We live in a world where customers attention spans are shorter than ever, so we need to make those moments when we have their focus count. The movies aren’t cinematic masterpieces, but their marketing stunts will be remembered as some one of the best movie campaigns ever.