The Star Wars Marketing Video Strategy

The Star Wars Marketing Video StrategyUnless your head has been buried in the Tatooine sand, you’re probably aware that Star Wars: The Force Awakens is opening this month. As someone who works in PR and marketing, the movie’s promotion a case study on how to execute a smart marketing video strategy.

Yup, I’m a Nerd

Okay, let’s get this out of the way… full disclosure… I’m a big Star Wars geek. As I told my wife when we first started dating, I don’t have a storm trooper costume in my closet… but I’m still a big nerd.

I can quote the original movie (A New Hope) word-for-word. Want to know the ID number for the storm trooper guarding the Millennium Falcon? TK-421. It should also be noted that I could have chosen any number of schools for college. I picked USC, George Lucas’ alma mater. I have big time Star Wars geek cred.

Case Study: marketing video strategy

Now that I’ve come clean, let’s get to it because the folks at LucasFilm and Disney have provided everyone with a terrific example of how to launch something. In this case, they’re launching a movie. However, this can work just as well for anyone launching a new company, brand, product, service… you name it.

The trap many people fall into when creating their launch strategy is including a video. You read that right. They include a video… and they shouldn’t.

Instead, the plan should include multiple videos!

Don’t get me wrong, if there’s only enough money in the marketing budget for a single video, go for it. But before you do, check with a video pro. You might be able to stretch that budget and create more than one, and here’s why you want to do that.

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More videos, more connected

It’s a T60 video truth… the more videos people watch, the more connected they become. If you create multiple videos for your launch, you’re giving people an opportunity to connect with whatever you’re launching before it’s even out.

The videos are also a great way to build anticipation. The Force Awakens is a perfect example. Just look at the trailers.

Star Wars Video Breakdown

The first teaser was released a year ago and was about a minute and half long. Basically, all it did was give us a glimpse at a few of the characters involved and some of the iconic Star Wars imagery.

The second Star Wars teaser was released a few months later and revealed a little more. This one is about two minutes long. Again, we got some character introductions, and we also received a few hints about the plot.

Finally, the official trailer was released just a couple of months ago. It expanded on the plot, but it didn’t give anything away.

See what they’re doing? How they’re revealing things little by little? A slow trickle of information, allowing anticipation to rise.

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You can do it too

Think about your own launch strategy. Surely you want to build anticipation. Whether you produce a few videos  or just a couple, it can work the same way.

Your first launch video can be short, 30-45 seconds, simply giving people a snap shot of what’s to come. The next one should be a little longer and more in-depth, giving people a better look.

It works because video is the medium that allows people to see and hear about what’s new. Text can’t do that. Photos can’t do it either. Video is the next best thing to experiencing something in-person.

More, please

The Star Wars video launch campaign goes well beyond the trailers. Along the way they’ve released a video taking people behind-the-scenes of the film’s making, as well as videos promoting a contest to be at the official movie premiere.

It’s all good… wetting the pallet of every Star Wars geek like me.

That’s how you launch something. Your new company, brand, product, service… using multiple videos to build anticipation will lead to a successful launch.

–Tony Gnau

Tony Gnau - T60 ProductionsTony Gnau is the Founder and Chief Storytelling Officer at T60 Productions. He’s a three-time Emmy Award-winning journalist, has led T60 Productions to winning 18 Telly Awards for its corporate videos, and is the author of the Amazon #1 Bestseller “Lights, Camera, Impact: storytelling, branding, and production tips for engaging corporate videos.”