8 Ways Your Brand Can Benefit From An Entertainment Partnership

Let’s be honest – brand marketing is a lot harder than it used to be.

With customers’ attention fragmented across a million screens in a media environment that’s constantly reinventing itself, your job as a brand marketer has become incredibly complicated.

But this shifting landscape has also created some incredible opportunities for brands smart enough to pursue them.

For the past 11 years, we've helped brands like Verizon and Mike and Ike strike partnerships with entertainment properties like Inception and NBA2K that drove incredible value for them.

Along the way, we’ve discovered countless ways an entertainment partnership can drive huge results for a brand.

(By the way, if you'd like us to send you our secrets to a successful partnership, sign up at the bottom of this post.)

Whether you’re looking to get more out of your existing partnerships, or curious about how an entertainment partnership could benefit your marketing, this post is for you.

Here are eight ways an entertainment partnership can benefit your brand.

1. It captures your consumers’ attention.

No matter how strong your brand’s marketing message, it’s often helpful to expand the things your brand talks about beyond just your products. An entertainment partnership allows you to do this by giving you something complementary and engaging to reference in your campaigns.

For example, China Glaze nail polish used the home entertainment release of the cultural phenomenon Suicide Squad to reward fans with free digital copies of the film as well as a chance to win a new flat screen TV.  They aligned existing product to the release and gave fans something to watch while they waited for their polish to dry.

MTM watches used its partnership with XCOM, the video game, to differentiate their traditional messaging with a buzzworthy giveaway. They gave away one-of-a-kind themed watches and consoles.

2. It creates compelling content opportunities.

Partnering with an entertainment property can give your brands access to unique content you otherwise wouldn’t be able to share with your fans. It can unlock opportunities to leverage Hollywood talent, connect your product to popular stories and characters, and create a whole new storytelling path you’re your creative team to explore.

The partnership of Verizon and Inception enabled Verizon to pick up themes of the film an introduce faux blog entries about Mind Crime being real.

3. It increases social engagement.

No matter how creative your brand’s social media content may be, an entertainment partnership can give it a major boost. Whether through a contest, giveaway, or simple content sharing, entertainment partnerships drive increased engagement on a brand’s social media posts and can be a great way to reward your fans.

For example, a mall-based snack chain partnered with the release of the movie Max.  This family-friendly film was a perfect fit for their demo.  They gave away family 4-packets of tickets on social media.  They reached 10% of their audience without any media spend.

In another example, a regional CPG brand quadrupled its social engagement, receiving over 2.3K likes, 1.4K comments and 300 shares, by simply running a comment-to-win online giveaway for a chance to win a copy of the holiday classic, A Charlie Brown Christmas.

Tilly’s, a millennial targeting apparel brand, and Red Roof Inn were able to enhance their onsite experiences with enticing in-game content they could run in loops at their locations.

4. It drives incremental reach for your campaigns.

We live in a world where many entertainment properties have larger reach than most media companies. An entertainment partnership enables your brand to tap into that reach and drastically expand the audience exposed to your products and campaigns.

For example, on the home entertainment release of How to Be Single, an up-and-coming beauty brand negotiated a re-post from the film’s Facebook page, reaching an additional 400K intrinsic fans.

While supporting the release of the video game Sid Meier’s Civilization VI, a popular apparel retailer, Buckle, had its in-store promotion featured on the game’s social media channels, extending its reach to over 850K game fans.

5. It drives PR buzz and word of mouth.

When you partner with an entertainment property that the world’s already buzzing about, it creates PR opportunities for your brand and additional word of mouth.

For example, Cinnabon planned to launch a new product—BonBites--a smaller version of their iconic classic roll. Using the animated family movie Storks, they “delivered” their latest creation with press events featuring imagery form the film and the power of the studio PR team.

Krispy Kreme and Vita Coco shared their roles in the Goosebumps premiere via their social channels.

6. It leads to new retail opportunities.

In many cases, the entertainment properties your brand can partner with will have struck their own separate deals with retailers that you can then benefit from. Their partnerships may generate opportunities you otherwise might not be able to access on your own.

For example, a movie may have secured end cap space in a retail store and be able to feature your product in that space as a part of your partnership. Just Born Candy used their partnership with NBA2K to drive incremental retail exposure for Mike and Ike’s and Hot Tamales at grocery and Walmart.

7. It positions your brand as an influencer.

In an era where influencer marketing is all the rage, your brand has the opportunity to become an influencer itself. But to do so, you have to address things beyond your own products.

An entertainment partnership helps your brand become part of a larger cultural conversation, can increase your brand’s cool factor, and associate your brand with properties your ideal customers already love.

8. It allows you to reward employees and franchisees.

An entertainment partnership for your brand can also generate fun opportunities to reward your employees or franchisees through offering giveaways or tickets to advanced screenings, premieres, or other Hollywood events.

For example, Papa John’s has run several promotions that reward both consumers and internal teams with content giveaways, and in some cases, trips to premieres.

Find Out How Your Brand Can Secure An Entertainment Partnership...

There are more opportunities out there for your brand than you may realize and we’re happy to help you find them.

Contact us to discuss or enter your email below and we'll send you our 3 Secrets To A Successful Marketing Partnership below.


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Cynthia Hill