Bob Baker's Artist Empowerment Blog

Word-of-Mouth Sunshine

The Los Angeles Times ran an article on the positive effect that word-of-mouth is playing in the success of the sleeper film Little Miss Sunshine.

It also points out how the major movie studio marketing game has changed. From the article:

Recommendations from friends and associates always have been a critical ingredient in building box-office momentum, just as negative word of mouth accelerates a middling movie's downfall. Yet the speed at which such assessments are transmitted has never been so fast, nor the effect — as Little Miss Sunshine is dramatizing — so profound.

Movie studios once felt confident they had at least two weekends to sell as many movie tickets as possible before toxic buzz would undermine their multimillion-dollar marketing campaigns. Hollywood executives now say that the proliferation of movie-related e-mail, Internet blogs and text messaging has reduced that window to mere hours, as the quick decline of last weekend's heavily promoted Snakes on a Plane proved.

It's a sad statement about the way things used to be, but uplifting to know that as consumers become more empowered communicators, quality movies, books, art and music have a better chance of rising to the top.

An executive from Fox Searchlight had this to say: "Instant communications technology has completely changed the role of word of mouth. Word of mouth used to be confined to cities. Now, thanks to e-mail, it crosses continents. It's revolutionized what word of mouth means."

Amen to that!



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