Business Growth Ideas

Entertainment Marketing: All You Need To Know

Entertainment marketing is a special way of advertising that’s all about the world of entertainment. It includes ads and promotions in movies, video games, live events, and on the social media pages of celebrities and influencers. It’s like a partnership dance between entertainment creators and brands from other industries, where they work together to get more attention and reach more people. 

Effective entertainment marketing, including collaborations with influencer marketing companies in India, creates brand recognition and, as a result, transforms that recognition into revenue. Just like marketing in its broader sense, entertainment marketing aims to boost profits.

Let’s Take a Case Study of Redbull 

entertainment marketing
Source: Pixabay

Red Bull has a long history of pushing the boundaries when covering extreme sports. One of their most remarkable content marketing feats was the “Stratos” campaign. In this daring venture, they teamed up with Austrian skydiver Felix Baumgartner to break the world record for the highest skydive, a jaw-dropping 128,000 feet, or about 24 miles above the Earth’s surface.

To achieve this incredible feat, Red Bull placed Felix in a small communication capsule and used a massive helium-filled balloon to carry him into the stratosphere. Even more impressive is that his journey, from ascent to the heart-pounding jump, set another record. 

Red Bull live-streamed the entire event online, drawing over 8 million viewers, making it the most-watched livestream on YouTube.You can watch Red Bull’s recap video if you’re curious to relive this breathtaking experience. I couldn’t resist watching it again while writing this article.

A Key Outcome for Marketers

Don’t underestimate the power of suspense while hosting an event your audience can feel a part of. Witnessing something new, perhaps a bit nerve-wracking, creates a personal connection. The better the outcome, the longer your audience will remember and discuss it.

Entertainment marketing is a multifaceted strategy that leverages entertainment content and experiences to promote products, services, or brands. It integrates marketing messages into various forms of entertainment, such as movies, TV shows, music, video games, and live events. 

Here’s a detailed explanation of how entertainment marketing works, along with some relevant statistics and real-world examples:

Sponsorship and Partnerships

Brands can sponsor entertainment events, music festivals, or sports teams. For example, Coca-Cola has a long history of sponsoring the Olympics. In 2021, Disney announced a partnership with McDonald’s to promote its movies, such as “Frozen II.”

Branded Content

Brands can create entertaining and relevant content for their target audience. Red Bull, for instance, produces extreme sports content that aligns with its brand image. Red Bull’s YouTube channel has over 10 million subscribers, showcasing the effectiveness of this approach.

Celebrity Endorsements

Collaborating with celebrities or influencers can significantly impact a brand’s visibility. According to research by Markerly, Instagram influencers with over 100,000 followers typically charge $1,000 per post, showcasing the lucrative nature of influencer marketing.

  • Social Media Engagement: Brands engage with their audience on social media platforms by sharing entertaining content, conducting giveaways, and running contests. The hashtag #ShareACoke campaign by Coca-Cola generated 500,000 photos shared on social media within the first year of launch.
  • Interactive Experiences: Brands can create immersive experiences, such as escape rooms, pop-up shops, or virtual reality experiences, tied to their products or entertainment content. HBO’s “Game of Thrones” pop-up experiences worldwide attracted thousands of fans.
  • Streaming Services Original Content: Streaming platforms like Netflix invest heavily in creating original content to attract and retain subscribers. As of 2021, Netflix had over 200 million subscribers worldwide.
  • Data and Analytics: Brands use data and analytics to target their audience effectively. For example, Spotify uses listening data to curate personalized playlists and recommend songs to users.
  • Live Streaming and Virtual Events: The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the adoption of virtual events. Brands hosted virtual concerts, product launches, and conferences to reach audiences worldwide. 
  • Content Crossovers: Brands often collaborate with entertainment creators to produce unique content. For example, Fortnite’s collaboration with Marvel brought in-game events and exclusive content, enhancing player engagement.

Highly Effective Strategies in Entertainment Marketing

1. Product Placement

entertainment marketing
Source: Pexels

Product placement is a marketing strategy wherein a product or service is featured within various forms of media, including television shows, movies, music videos, social media platforms, or even advertisements for other products.

The brand didn’t just have a strong following among Tom Cruise’s fans; Cruise himself was also a fan. The brand reappeared in the 1986 film “Top Gun” in the form of the Ray-Ban Aviator 3025 design, leading to a remarkable 33% increase in Ray-Ban’s sales. Tom Cruise not only sported these sunglasses during the movie but was also prominently featured wearing them on the poster.

As Time Magazine reported, the outcome was a substantial 40% boost in sales for the Ray-Ban Aviator 3025. By 1986, the Ray-Ban Wayfarer had made appearances in popular shows like “Miami Vice,” “Moonlighting,” and “The Breakfast Club.” By 1989, Ray-Ban had sold over four million pairs of the Wayfarer model, with sales reaching $1.5 million. The brand relied on product placement as a fundamental element of its marketing strategy.

2. Brand Integration

Brand integration is the deliberate method of infusing a brand’s essence, principles, and communication into diverse facets of a company’s activities, promotional endeavors, and customer interactions.

Let’s take a look at a case study of Apple

Apple has consistently prioritized showcasing its products over its brand name. They’ve orchestrated grand expos to unveil new offerings and launched their latest phones with a primary focus on product promotion rather than brand awareness. Their ‘Shot on iPhone’ advertising campaigns serve as a prime illustration of their marketing endeavors, highlighting the quality and capabilities of their products.

What Actions Have Apple Taken?

Apple strongly emphasizes the consumer in its marketing efforts and aligns this approach with its product development. Their commitment to innovation shines through in their iconic slogan, ‘Think Different.’ They strive to showcase the strengths of their products, employing TV advertising and leveraging the influence of tech enthusiasts.

What Insights Can We Gain from Apple?

When it comes to marketing a specific component of our brand, such as a product, it’s imperative that we first grasp the advantages it offers. By comprehending these benefits, we can effectively market them and emphasize the selling points. It’s crucial to ensure that the individual element embodies the overarching message of the entire brand.

3. Licensing

Licensing is like teamwork between two parties: the one who owns something valuable (like a movie character) and wants to use it (like a toy company). The toy company asks permission to use the movie character to sell toys to a specific group. It’s a win-win because the movie character gets more popular, and the toy company makes money.

McDonald’s Happy Meal Case Study

The McDonald’s Happy Meal has featured branded toys, often tied to major movie releases, since their initial partnership with “Star Trek” in 1979. Over time, McDonald’s has evolved into a highly sought-after avenue for reaching fresh audiences and has been utilized for promotional purposes by renowned companies like Disney, Warner Bros., Mattel, Nintendo, The Pokémon Company, Nickelodeon, and SEGA.

Benefits of Entertainment Marketing

entertainment marketing
Source: Unsplash

Entertainment marketing offers a compelling return on investment, especially in today’s context of increasing cord-cutting trends. This particular audience is more inclined to consume online videos, engage in video games, and spend significant time on social media.

In the study done by Frontiers in Psychology, researchers assessed the effectiveness of product placement, a prevalent form of entertainment marketing. They highlighted several advantages of product placement, such as its ability to target particular audiences and its natural integration into content, making it less intrusive than traditional commercials.

Product placement works effectively because it captures the viewer’s attention within the context of the medium they are engaged with, like a streaming TV show, without interrupting their experience. This is particularly suitable for platforms like Netflix and content forms like feature-length films or console games, which typically lack traditional ads.

Brands can also choose entertainment media that align with their target demographics, providing a more refined form of audience targeting than traditional banner ads, billboards, or short TV commercials.

The Bottom Line

Entertainment marketing is a dynamic and multifaceted field that employs various strategies, including audience engagement, storytelling, social media, influencers, and product placement, to connect with consumers and promote entertainment products effectively. It involves promoting products, creating memorable experiences, and fostering deep connections with fans.

As the industry evolves, staying attuned to emerging trends and technologies, including the role of influencer marketing companies in India, is crucial for success. This makes entertainment marketing a continually changing and exciting endeavor centered around crafting and sharing stories that resonate and inspire audiences globally.


What is entertainment marketing?

Entertainment marketing is a strategic approach that involves promoting and marketing various forms of entertainment, such as movies, music, TV shows, video games, and live events, to engage and attract audiences.

Why is entertainment marketing important?

Entertainment marketing is crucial for building anticipation, creating brand awareness, and connecting with audiences emotionally. It helps entertainment products stand out in a competitive landscape.

What are some common strategies in entertainment marketing?

Common strategies include social media marketing, influencer collaborations, product placement, content creation, and audience engagement through storytelling.

How do I identify my target audience in entertainment marketing?

Identifying your target audience involves analyzing demographics, psychographics, and media consumption habits to understand the preferences and interests of potential viewers, listeners, or consumers.

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