In the recent years, social media has taken the foreground. Whether its politics, small or large scale
businesses and indu...
media. 2013, a year that started off bad for the Bengali cinema industry, with the death of the maverick
director Rituparn...
more people took to rating and reviewing the film on sites such as IMDB, RottenTomatoes, etc. The film
also received huge ...
of 3

Press & Web Release - Company Social Media Highlights 2013

Published on: Mar 4, 2016

Transcripts - Press & Web Release - Company Social Media Highlights 2013

  • 1. In the recent years, social media has taken the foreground. Whether its politics, small or large scale businesses and industries of all types; today are engaged in social media to create awareness about their brands, products and services. The movie industry is no different, and in fact movie marketers were the first ones to embrace the platform, promoting and tracking the interest levels for their movies. The world of movies, an industry where millions of currency flow in and out each day, has always been open and adaptable to change. Social Media bridged the gap between the audiences and the film- makers and provided a new experience altogether. Today, the movie industry is heavily using social media to maximize engagement with their potential audiences. From providing news, trivia etc. to creating alternate realities and dedicated apps, social media is definitely being used to generate maximum buzz about upcoming movies. Over the last two years, major films at the box office such as Warner Bros’ Inception, Paramount’s Paranormal Activity, and countless other blockbusters of the recent years have had particular attention to engaging audiences with movie related content. Marketers, in an effort to upscale engagement, have engaged in practices to immerse their audiences into the alternate reality, i.e., of the film. Online games relating to the films have become increasingly common on Facebook. Trending on twitter is another social media aspect where marketers put a lot of attention. And then there are always contests on social media, such as fan-made poster, trailer and illustration competitions. And apart concentrating on facebook, twitter, youtube and mobile, marketers are also embracing new young social media platforms such as Vine, Instagram, reddit, pinterest, etc. India too has logged onto social media and so has the film industry of the country. Besides writers, producers, actors and the crew, there’s another block of interest holders that keenly drives crowds to the multiplexes – Social Media Managers. The big digital boom of the recent times has ensured that makers and the marketers of the Indian Film Industry keep pace with it. Bollywood is using Social Media extensively and SM has now become an integral part of marketing budget of any Bollywood Movie. All movies these days have at least one person in the crew who has a significant virtual following. Right from the time the film is signed this one person; it leads the way for conversations that are to follow. A million re-tweets, favorites and replies later, we see the movie being talked about the way it’s meant to. Gone are the times when cinema buffs used to wait for their favorite monthly magazine to catch up on Bollywood gossip. The news hungry fans now, have this incessant need to know everything instantly. And that is exactly where never-ending conversations start, with people putting in their thoughts and opinions, and increases visibility. Another important content for social media users are teasers and trailers. The online audience these days looks forward to catching up on movie scenes or trailers much before the movie is launched. These fare reasonably high on interaction quotient and are highly share- worthy. Videos and trailers of most of the ‘socially active’ movies like Kahaani, Ishqzyaade, Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara, B.A. Pass, Paan Singh Tomar, RA One, etc saw extensive ‘shares’ on various platforms much before the movies were released, primarily owning to their exceptional use of one liners. Regional cinema in India, such as Tamil and Bengali cinema have always represented more charisma and enjoyed more respect from critics. In the global scenario too, Tamil and Bengali films have fared much better than Bollywood films. The regional cinema industries too have stepped up their efforts on social
  • 2. media. 2013, a year that started off bad for the Bengali cinema industry, with the death of the maverick director Rituparno Ghosh, seemed to turn out to be a rather good year for the cinema of Bengal. And yes, it was a year, when social media was used as extensively as any other high budget Bollywood or even Hollywood films. Digital advertising campaigns, highly engaging contests, online games, apart from the regular trailers, films stills, etc, were all on the platter for the promotion of Bengali films. Though there was a lot of conversation and mourning on social media when Rituparno Ghosh passed away on May 30th , the real social media activities started mid-way, for the promotions of Goynar Baksho by Aparna Sen and Meghe Dhaka Tara by Kamaleswar Mukherjee. Both the films, produced by Shree Venkatesh Films, the biggest media and Entertainment Company in Eastern India and high on intellectual quotient fared reasonably well in the box office. Meghe Dhaka Tara, based on the life and works of Ritwick Ghatak, went on to become one of the finest Bengali films churned out in recent years. This was followed up by more major productions such as Raj Chakraborty’s Proloy and Rituparno Ghosh’s unfinished tale of truth and deception, Satyanweshi. Then came the fantasy of Egypt, the Kakababu-Santu tale of Mishawr Rawhoshyo by Srijit Mukherji, the production of which took the entire Bengali film industry a notch higher. The production included shooting in Egypt and social media efforts back home geared up. From hosting contest that gave free premiere passes for the movie and an online social game to breaking down the composition of the hand drawn posters, Mishawr Rawhoshyo proved to a big learning curve for the Bengali film makers and marketers. Around the same time, the commercial movie Rangbaaz with superstar Dev, also made under the banner of SVF, trended nationally on twitter. Anik Dutta’s Ashchorjyo Prodip, coming shortly after Mishawr Rawhoshyo, used witty one- liners and hand drawn poster elements to increase engagement and visibility. All the three movies enjoyed impressive shares at the box office. However, it was towards the end of the year, that the real challenge would prevail on Tollywood. The most expensive Bengali film of all times was slated for a Christmas release. Chander Pahar directed by Kamaleswar Mukherjee and produced by Shree Venkatesh Films, was the biggest, the most ambitious and the most expensive film project ever taken up by a Bengali director in Tolly-town. The production of this film, surpassed that of Mishawr Rawhoshyo as the shooting was carried out in South Africa, over a period of 43 days, using real live wild animals, including snakes, lions and elephants. Therefore the social media activities back home started early. The Facebook page dedicated for the movie was created well in advance and had been gathering fans and audiences. The marketers were rather caught by surprise when #ChanderPahar1stLook trended on twitter in an effort by the waiting fans to catch a glimpse of the official poster and other designs from the movie. Capitalizing on this, the Chander Pahar team came up with a rather unique contest in India – design your own poster for Chander Pahar. The contest, spread like wildfire and submissions started pouring in. The winners of the contest eventually got to watch the film during its premiere at INOX, South City. Although there was no online game, as it has become a popular trend, the gripping story did not fail to impress the social media statistics. The trailer of the film became the first and the fastest of any Bengali films to cross 1 lakh views on Youtube. The official facebook page also crossed more than 50,000 likes before release and 1 lakh likes in the period after, another statistic that was overcome the fastest in the context of Bengali films. The films premiered on 20th December and another dedicated hashtag, #ChanderPahar trended nationally. And after that, the film went on a record shattering spree, competing against and beating out the biggest Bollywood film of the year, the Aamir-Abhishek-Katrina starrer Dhoom 3, by a reasonable margin. The responses of the audience on social media were overwhelming, and more and
  • 3. more people took to rating and reviewing the film on sites such as IMDB, RottenTomatoes, etc. The film also received huge response from the national audience when it released nationally on 27th December. Chander Pahar is also set to release across the USA on 10th January. Apart from movies, the production company responsible for the finest Bengali films of recent times, Shree Venkatesh Films also enjoyed massive social media attention and impressive statistics. The number of likes on the official page of the most powerful production house in Eastern India crossed 2 lakhs, while the number of followers on the official twitter handle crossed 20,000. @venkateshfilms, the official twitter handle of the company, also became the only verified twitter handle of an entertainment company from the East. On Youtube too, the company’s efforts and statistics are noteworthy. Apart from embracing the plethora of customizable options introduced by Google in the year, the marketers also devised video series (es), content relating to different movies. The total estimated watch time of SVF videos reached more than 60 CR minutes, which is equivalent to almost 114 years and the total accumulated views of videos on the SVF channel crossed 50 CR. And towards the end of the year, the figure of the total number of subscribers on the channel was more than 85,000. Therefore, 2013 had not only been a great year for Bengali movies but a great year for social media activities relating to movies as well. Shree Venkatesh Films also received massive attention in the limelight, being the centre of conversations by movie buffs, fans and other audiences. After churning out some of the best films, perhaps of the last decade, the production house is coming back with yet another fine film, Kaushik Ganguly’s Apur Panchali, based on the life of Subir Banerjee, the child actor who played Apu in Satyajit Ray’s iconic film Pather Panchali.

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