Hyderabad: Director Sukumar owes half the success of 1: Nenokkadine (which was more niche than commercial) to Facebook and Twitter. And, last week, 1’s digital campaign was hailed as the third best in the “Films and TV” category at the Indian Digital Media Awards (IDMA) held in Mumbai. In that race, Mahesh Babu’s 1 pipped Hrithik Roshan’s Krrish 3.
Credit for the online buzz goes to city’s First Show Digital, founded by three graduates in MBA (Marketing), Sharath Chandra, Anurag and Rohita.
Since 2012, their digital marketing firm has handled online promotions for 25 films, including Julayi, Pizza, Legend, Manam and is working on the upcoming films, Aagadu and Rudramadevi.
Anurag says, “1 has been our longest assignment from releasing its first look in May 2013 to firefighting poor reviews early this year. Producer Ram Achanta wanted all the fans to come together on one platform and then branch out to FB, Twitter and YouTube etc. So, we made sure every online post, video, photograph drove the fans back to the film’s website. The idea was to create a fan movement.”
So in those eight months, the trio gave Mahesh Babu’s fans a new identity, superfans. They had them waiting on Twitter with #superstariscoming, made them sport the nerdy glass that the star wore in the beach sequence through an image recognition app and let them be a part of the first live audio launch across 25 theatres in the state.
“Though digital campaign accounts for only 15 per cent of the total media outreach, it does make a difference to a film,” says Sharath, adding, “We influenced the sale of 7,500 tickets on day 1 of the release. 1’s official YouTube channel got 1.2 crore views. On Facebook, 1 got over 13 crore views, reaching 4 crore users and engaging 39 lakh people.”
Regarding the controversial “regressive poster”, Sharath says, “We decided not to address it altogether online, as it would add visibility to the whole issue.”
And when critics and audience started panning the movie in the first week, they came up with the golden plan and got the people who “liked the film and its concept” to write positive reviews on the IMDB site. And in days, 1 received an 8.9 rating from close to 20,000 moviegoers....