Bollywood movies started their marketing with simple print ads & hoardings on the streets for decades. Later, as technology evolved, the marketing strategies changes and Bollywood took over reality shows & social media as a marketing tool.
But now, the production houses are making sure they reach a vast majority of viewers with one channel. And for that, they have turned towards the short video platforms like TikTok and likee.
Last year, Bala, starring Ayushmann Khurrana, was promoted on TikTok with the hashtag #Don’tBeShyAgain. Not just Bala, several other films, such as Housefull 4, Judgementall Hai Kya, Bharat, and Dream Girl, took their marketing on TikTok. While on Likee movies like, Dabangg 3, Chhicchore, Mission Mangal and Panipat were promoted by their respective production houses.
Now, let’s understand why these platforms are becoming a hit with the entertainment industry for promotions.
Considerably Vast Reach
According to a recent report by App Annie, with 200 million downloads, TikTok has been the most downloaded app in India in 2019. While Likee ranked third with 140 million downloads.
Engaging In Nature
Apart from mimicking famous dialogues and recreating scenes, the apps have a lot more to keep people engaged. Regular updates on filters and daily challenges can be seen circulating all over the internet. These apps have also been known to introduce movie specific filters & challenges which makes them a favorable choice for the production houses.
Likee has launched the #HudHudDabanggChallenge to promote Dabangg 3, asking users to perform a particular dance step from the movie’s title song and post the videos. For Bala, TikTok designed a ‘bald’ filter and asked users to post videos with it.
Music companies also are using these platforms for promotions. Likee’s partnership with T Series to launch a new version of the song Yaad Piya Ki Ane Lagi has garnered more than 180 million views on the platform so far.
Apart from the mainstream Hindi cinema & tv shows, many regional movies have also collaborated with the local influencers. This gives a chance for all the production houses with various languages to make the most of these platforms. TikTok collaborated with Telugu movies Dear Comrade and 90 ML, and are now working with production houses across India on integrated campaigns
Not A Win-Win For All
Neither TikTok nor Likee has been able to receive any monetary gains from the production houses for these campaigns.
According to experts, these apps are unable to strike a bargain yet with production houses, because of their limited reach, but these partnerships help them attract new users.
Devendra Deshpande, head, business and growth, Friday Filmworks, says, “For a production house like ours, it is difficult to understand what value they bring to the table. So, there is no reason, in my assessment, why a big movie would pay a small platform.”
According to Sandeep Goyal, chairman, Mogae Media, these apps lack a wide appeal that Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram have. “They are still niche; they don’t have the mainstream appeal that advertisers look for. Also, they need to shake off the negative image they earned initially with the controversies surrounding them,” he adds.