How Disney Took Risks Marketing 'The Force Awakens'

How Disney Took Risks Marketing 'The Force Awakens'

Banking On Brand Awareness

Despite "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" being the most highly anticipated movie of the year, Disney has taken a more laid-back approach to marketing it. This may come as a surprise to anyone with a television, internet connection or eyesight for that matter since advertisements for the movie are literally everywhere. But Disney, who purchased Lucasfilm LLC for $4 billion in 2013 and has spent over $200 million producing the "Force Awakens", has taken the back seat to promoting its December 17 premiere. Considering how massive and long-standing the "Star Wars" fan base is, it's a smart - albeit risky - move Disney's made letting the franchise speak for itself.

Co-Branding 'The Force Awakens'

Disney has also left the bulk of marketing "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" to other companies. Official brand partners for the movie, including Verizon, General Mills, and Covergirl cosmetics, have already spent about $38 million cross-marketing the upcoming movie. Other companies have jumped on the unofficial "Force Awakens" bandwagon, spending $51 million in TV advertising for Star Wars-themed products that aren't directly associated with the latest installment.‚Äčcovergirl makeup with packaging design for star wars the force awakens

Disney's Jedi Mind Tricks

According to the Wall Street Journal, the average amount of a film's footage used in trailers and commercials in "twelve-to-15 minutes". With the "Force Awakens", Disney has only shown less than six minutes across three trailers and 12 TV commercials. Leaving it to our imagination then, eh Disney? 
*Cue Yoda voice* Inspired, we are.

Our Takeaway

One thing's for sure: While Disney has been playing it cool (no pun intended), we've been counting down the seconds to the "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" premiere and we don't even know if we like Star Wars. Now that's just good strategy.

Learn more about how 3 Waves Media can market your brand, check out this page or fill out our project planner.


To read more about Disney's advertising for "The Force Awakens", check out this article by The Wall Street Journal.