Studios Not Intertesed In 'Marketing Czars'

   May 7, 2010—Movie studios are not suited for “marketing czars” that some packaged goods giants install to keep their whole advertising/publicity machines focused on target. Why? The film business is too fast moving and has too many “products”—since each film is a new product release.
   "Movie marketing execs say theatrical media plans are a different animal and continue to be," says a Variety story by Wayne Friedman. "In buying television commercial time, studios are known to pay premiums for specific and needed commercial positioning. Much of this comes from quick responses of daily, almost real-time syndication national tracking services that can show consumers interest, or lack thereof, in a specific film."
   Companies like Unilever (food, soap and personal care) and Procter & Gamble (soaps, diapers, etc.) rely on marketing managers, which works because their product mix is fairly static. Tide laundry soap has been on store shelves since 1946. MGM’s Hot Tub Time Machine will remain in wide theatrical distribution only about seven weeks, which isn’t a lot of time for a czar to run around tweaking advertising messages and put out marketing fires.
   Says the Variety article, "Because of this, (RPA Advertising exec Shelley) Watson says, ‘It’s not uncommon to have 60 to 70 revisions of media plans.’ She doesn’t believe a communication specialist would be a helpful addition to get in-between these lightning fast changing moves."
   Walt Disney Studios is perhaps an exception because it just appointed M. T. Carney—a New York-based marketing communications exec specializing in digital media—as a marketing chief with broad purview. However, Disney is one of the few film companies with a “brand” image—its family fare so there is an on-going brand image that a czar can nuture.
   Marketing to Moviegoers author Robert Marich is quoted in the article as saying that the executive corps in Hollywood’s theatrical movie ranks have experienced waves of change over decades. In the 1970s, studios hired TV executives to run studios and 1980s studios hired advertising from Madison Avenue for top film marketing posts, reaching outside the industry. That because buying high-cost TV advertising suddenly became the centerpiece of film ad campaigns and insiders lacked TV media experience.
   For full text, click link below: