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Entertainment marketing is the promotion of a product or a brand, with entertainment as the primary vehicle for delivering your advertising message. As social media transforms into social entertainment, brands’ advertising strategies have also shifted toward entertainment marketing. In the past, the network effect defined social media channels — the people you were connected with shaped your experience. That has now shifted towards algorithms that pick up on what content you find most entertaining and then show you more of what you like.
The benefit of this shift is that the engagement of entertaining short-form video is ten times higher than static social media posts — audiences are far more likely to click on your post and possibly even navigate to your online store and check out a product. The word-of-mouth effect also means that shoppers are more likely to shop in-store too, and share their purchases with their audiences to inspire even more purchases. Entertainment marketing can now take on a life of its own when done well.
Dash Hudson determined through its 2023 social media benchmarks that the entertainment industry, which includes the media and publishing industry, is now the top industry on TikTok, supplanting the beauty industry, which has long reigned supreme. This signals a strong shift in what users are getting in social channels, as channels like TikTok have now become the prime destination for popular culture.
Entertainment marketing leverages organic content to grow your audience by entertaining them. Audiences are increasingly using social channels to be entertained, and marketers are appealing to their tastes with branded content that is entertaining in its own right. Traditional advertising is more concerned with selling a product, and while it still has a place on social media, Gen Z is warier about ads than past generations.
Entertainment marketing allows you to cross-promote your own product with sources of entertainment. Brands such as ColourPop Cosmetics frequently collaborate with big players in the entertainment industry, including Star Wars, Barbie and the NBA. The benefit of this is that both partners expand the reach of their brand beyond their typical audience.
As the advertising and entertainment industries are so wide-reaching, there are many examples of what an effective entertainment marketing strategy looks like. Some involve complex brand integrations, while others are more simple and spontaneous. We’ve outlined a few entertainment marketing examples to give a perspective on what your brand can accomplish.
The media industry has embraced entertainment marketing as its status quo. Product placement has always been a staple of the industry and remains a part of our everyday lives, even if it’s not immediately obvious. However, as the nature of entertainment has widened to include social channels, so too has the reach of the entertainment industry. Product placement is more likely to be shared and go viral. More eyeballs on your product means more potential customers to sell to.
Ray-Ban saw a noteworthy increase in sales when Tom Cruise wore their aviator glasses in Top Gun. This is an example of product placement taking on a life of its own, as the product becomes associated with an iconic character.
Co-branding is when two brands collaborate on entertainment marketing to boost awareness of both brands, as well as find new audiences. When it comes to co-branding, it is important for the brands to find common ground that allows them to market to a shared audience while also distinguishing what sets them apart so that they can find new customers.
The luxury industry is common ground between BMW and Louis Vuitton. These brands were able to collaborate and use co-branding to attract the same target audience––people who are willing to pay for high-quality, sleek, and luxury items. This collaboration was perfect for the audience they identified because they could promote both brands as different sides of a luxury lifestyle.
Brands commonly use celebrities and influencers with high social capital from the general public to promote their products. In the era of social entertainment marketing, celebrity endorsements are more effective than ever, as short-form video has an incredibly long reach and is proven to have a higher impact than static content.
Doja Cat was named the new Global Brand Ambassador for JBL speakers. This collaboration touched not just the music industry but also the fashion industry, as Doja Cat requested speakers she could wear as a fashion statement. She leveraged her huge following on social media, particularly on TikTok, to promote the collaboration, and it earned great engagement by being genuinely unique and funny.
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to entertainment marketing, as all brands have different success metrics. What’s important is to center your approach around your target audience and how you want to attract them. If you’re looking for social proof, celebrity endorsements may be the most valuable. If you want to associate your brand with something fun or outside of your industry, co-branding may be the most valuable strategy. And, of course, product placement is a tried-and-true strategy to build brand awareness without reinventing the wheel.
Dash Hudson is the premier tool to help your brand navigate the social entertainment era with deep, strategic insights into your TikTok performance. This includes customizable dashboards to monitor your performance and pick up on anything that has gone viral, and tools to help you manage your organic social media campaigns with ease.
While there are many popular entertainment marketing strategies to help promote brands, some of the most effective include co-branding, celebrity endorsement, and product placement. These three strategies not only aim to entertain, but also get your product in front of a larger, more unique audience than what your brand currently reaches. The best strategies keep potential consumers coming back for more.
Entertainment marketing allows you to market your product or brand in a way that consumers enjoy and are prone to share with friends and family. Entertaining content has significantly more engagement than static content, which makes it a compelling marketing strategy.
Similar to entertaining organic content, entertainment branding involves filtering your brand through the lens of content that thrills audiences. Many brands are now using interactive experiences, including augmented reality, apps, television shows with product placement, and virtual worlds, to engage with customers on a much deeper level.