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Weinstein Studios bets on Kik to build word-of-mouth for The Giver

Film studio The Weinstein Company chose social messaging application Kik over its competitors ? several of which have much larger user bases ? to promote the film adaptation of Lois Lowery?s novel The Giver due to the app?s photo-sharing capabilities and emerging presence.

The campaign centers on virtual stickers that Kik users can use to decorate their photos and then share on social media. A trivia contest is also among the film-related content on the app being used to entice sharing and encourage word-of-mouth advertising.

?Adaptly recommended Kik for The Giver campaign because it offered a combination of large reach to the film?s target audience, as well as the opportunity for significant earned media,? said Sean O'Neal, president at Adaptly, New York. ?The Kik platform was literally built for sharing. 

"What we?ve observed of the Kik user is a high propensity to share, or ?kik?, engaging content like photos and videos," he said. 

Up and coming
Weinstein?s established relationship with Adaptly has resulted in social advertising campaigns for the company?s films on Facebook and Twitter, and because of the demographic profile of the Kik user base, Adaptly recommended the messaging app to Weinstein for this particular campaign.

Adaptly believed Kik would deliver a high number of shares given the frequent sharing tendencies of the average Kik user.

Kik?s partnership with Weinstein is the messaging app?s first official theatrical advertising campaign.

Adaptly hopes to surpass 1.5 million engagements through Kik, which aims to target ages 18-24 through its efforts. Kik currently reaches more than 150 million users and adds an average of 2 million new users each week. 

Recent data also shows that Kik has acquired more downloads on Android than SnapChat and WhatsApp. Kik trails behind Facebook messenger and Skype in a ranking of most downloads total on iOS and Android. 

Continuing the entertainment
Sectors within the entertainment industry have been leveraging mobile apps to extend the life of films by providing some type of interactive experience for smartphone users.

Broadcasting and cable company Comcast and entertainment corporation Lionsgate initiated a partnership to build mobile applications for Lionsgate films, offering bonus clips and features for Comcast customers purchasing movies through Xfinity On Demand.

For starters, the team created an app for Lionsgate?s Divergent in an effort to combat a decrease in DVD sales. The collaboration shows an attempt to provide a one-of-a-kind experience for fans of the Divergent franchise and future Lionsgate films to come (see story).

Broadway musical ?Holler If Ya Hear Me? promoted strategically through social to target urban, hip-hop enthusiasts, particularly a younger generation. 

The musical was inspired by the life of the late rapper Tupac Shakur, with the marketing strategy designed to connect the world of hip-hop to another area of entertainment: Broadway. These initiatives showcased how entertainment properties can leverage mobile to reach a targeted audience (see story). 

Given Adaptly?s targeted strategy combined the tailored content for smartphone users specifically, Weinstein hopes the Kik platform will deliver an experience that will resonate with the audience and drive engagement.

In the past, Kik has shown a lot of potential for marketers that are trying to reach a younger demographic with creative, engaging material that goes beyond the banner ad (see story).

Perhaps the success of the campaign will determine future partnerships between Kik and other entertainment industry leaders.

?Adaptly are experts in the entertainment category, and over the years we?ve seen that high engagement yields results,? Mr. O?Neal said. ?Given the quality of the content and the viral nature of the Kik platform we are confident the campaign will drive traffic to the film.?

?The video trailer that is being used for The Giver campaign is fantastic. It is an extended trailer with stunning cinematography and compelling clips of dialog. When viewed on a smartphone, particularly with headphones, the trailer is quite powerful.?

Final Take
Caitlyn Bohannon, editorial assistant for Mobile Marketer, New York