By now, most know about the Oscars’ bizarre incident on Sunday night when the Academy announced the wrong winner for this year’s Best Picture category. Whether it was a planned event or an accident, it is only fair to notice that that was not the only thing that made the Academy Awards ceremony memorable. From a marketing standpoint, the event was brilliantly planned and executed! The Academy has managed to integrate some of the marketing trends that are expected to shape the marketing landscape in 2017. Here are some key trends we picked up:
- Live and interactive content
In order to keep the audience engaged, the Academy managed to spice the event up by bringing a group of unsuspecting tourists into the Dolby Theater in front of nominees including Ryan Gosling, Denzel Washington, and Nicole Kidman. This carefully planned surprise was a clever idea to engage movie fans and build excitement. The audience was lively and actively engaged, making for a meaningful and relevant content experience.
- Social, cultural, and environmental movement
Brands nowadays are expected to stand for and demonstrate a greater commitment to social and environmental responsibility. Realizing that, the Academy tried to show real passion towards racial justice and reconciliation. This year, particularly, the Oscars’ nominee and winner base have people of color than ever before, achieving record-breaking diversity and wins in most categories. In addition, the Academy chose Walmart to be the only retail sponsor of the 2017 Oscars, promoting the brand’s campaign, which celebrates “cultural moments”. Moreover, the Academy paid great attention to environmental protection. For example, it has partnered with Swarovski, which provides crystals for the awards set at the Dolby Theater, to launch a collection of “ethical” fine jewelry.
- Social media for instant sharing and exposure
In a simple, yet incredibly funny and entertaining way, the Academy planned to use Twitter as a means of establishing a responsive experience during the ceremony. Live on stage, with his cell phone projected onto a large screen in front of the crowd, Oscars host, Jimmy Kimmel, tweeted at President Donald Trump saying he was worried about him after the show had gone on for more than two hours and not seeing a tweet from him yet. In under 30 minutes, Kimmel’s tweets quickly went viral, amassing more than 330,000 retweets. By leveraging social media, the Academy creatively developed a content vision and strategy to engage viewers at home and drive organic conversations among them and their extended network of friends.
The Oscars’ experience illustrates lessons that businesses should keep in mind. Interactive content, cultural relevance, and savvy use of social media can shape a clear personal identity for your brand and allow it to shine in 2017.