Movie Marketing Magic: Top Hollywood Digital Marketers Coming to Sydney

I was very honoured to be approached by SPAA* to create and lead a session on Reaching Your Audience in this era of Digital & Social Media Marketing for the 2009 SPAA Conference in Sydney between 17-20 November. I am now happy to announce that I have secured two awesome new media / digital marketers from Hollywood to help me:

  • Gordon Paddison** – Principal, Stradella Road & former Executive Vice President New Media, New Line Pictures (District 9, Lord of The Rings trilogy, Snakes on a Plane, Austin Powers and many more & Variety’s Integrated Marketer of the Year” Award in 2005)
  • Stephanie Bohn** – Director of Worldwide Marketing, Digital Distribution Warner Bros (The Dark Knight, Sex and the City, Hangover, Harry Potter and many more)

*SPAA – Screen Producers Association Australia

**Detailed bio’s outlined below.

To provide context to why we are doing our SPAA sessions, I have written a detailed blog post on the SPAA Conference Network website titled, ‘Can Australian Films Make Money?


Can Australian Films Make Money?

It is a simple but very important question and in short the answer is yes they can!

If this is the case then why don’t more Australian films make money either domestically or internationally? As a consumer marketer & producer my professional view is that most of the Australian films being made are simply not the types of films the majority of Australian (or international) audiences will pay to see and filmmakers are just not in tune with what consumers and audiences want. Further, even when we do make films which should connect and appeal to audiences – Balibo is a great example – the marketing is either mis-targeted and or insufficient or left too late. This also then results in an inhibited release (very few screens) and a non-optimised distribution outcome (filmmakers largely focused on only securing a ‘traditional’ theatrical & video release).

Read full blog post.

Learn more and register for our SPAA Sessions here.

Making Movies that Make Money: Begin with the Audience in Mind

Wednesday 18th November 2009

Part I, 10:30am – More than ever before, reaching a niche or diverse audience is increasingly a producer and film maker’s mandate, not just the distributor. But right now we are experiencing a moment of radical change across technology, consumer behaviour, distribution and marketing with seismic shifts in the way that entertainment is conceived, produced, distributed and consumed. Social Media, User Generated Content, Digital and Mobile Channels, Convergence and Diversity are no longer mere buzzwords or fads, but a fact of life. The day is coming when successful producers will be those who can realize the potential of a single extraordinary story across the widest range of platforms. How can we define, validate, inspire, energise and leverage the interactive participation of today’s audiences? What are the insights, trends and innovations that will shape our creative and marketing capacities as filmmakers? How can producers optimise their distribution plan to ensure their film successfully reaches an audience against an ever increasing competition for screens and changing consumer behaviour? A group of successful and respected entertainment marketers will come together to help you gain a more comprehensive understanding of targeted movie marketing, divulge inside tricks, techniques and trends, outline how and where audiences are consuming content and provide an essential perspective that will help reorient your approach to storytelling, distribution & marketing.

Part II, 1:45pm – We will take you through specific insight into today’s film audience behaviour and how to translate this insight into practical strategies & tactics. We will present a number of case studies from District 9, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Lord of the Rings, The Watchmen, Snakes on a Plane and Sex and the City which will illustrate how important understanding your audience is, how filmmakers can successfully tap into today’s digitally wired consumers, integrate across platforms and optimise their distribution opportunities accordingly. We will finish off with an opportunity for attendees to ask questions of our panel of industry experts made up of Christopher Mapp, Managing Director of Omnilab, (Executive Producer of Tomorrow When the War Began, Bran Nue Dae, Dead of Night & The Bank Job), Gordon Paddison, Principal, Stradella Road & former Executive Vice President New Media, New Line Pictures (District 9, Lord of The Rings trilogy, Snakes on a Plane, Sex and the City, Austin Powers & Variety’s “Integrated Marketer of the Year” Award in 2005), Stephanie Bohn, Director of Worldwide Marketing, Digital Distribution Warner Bros (The Dark Knight, Sex and the City, Hangover, Harry Potter), Travis Johnson, Managing Director, Universal McCann, Graham Cassidy, PR & Media Affairs Guru, Cato Counsel and Martin Walsh, Digital Marketing Director, Microsoft & Producer, Red Dune Films (Battle of Long Tan).

My SPAA co-speakers:

Gordon Paddison – Principal, Stradella Road & former Executive Vice President New Media, New Line Pictures

Gordon PaddisonGordon has extensive experience creating cross-divisional integrated campaigns for over two hundred movie titles, including District 9, The Lord of the Rings Trilogy, the Austin Powers and Blade franchises, broad hits such as Wedding Crashers, The Notebook, Boogie Nights, and Sex and the City, and genre product including Snakes on a Plane and Texas Chainsaw Massacre. From January 2000 to December 2008 Gordon was Executive Vice President New Media Marketing for New Line Pictures. In this role he ran worldwide campaigns for Lord of the Rings, Sex and the City and Austin Powers to name a few. Gordon is now the principal of Stradella Road an interactive marketing consultancy which has clients such as Peter Jackson (Lord of the Rings, District 9). Working on behalf of Peter Jackson in conjunction with Sony, Gordon has been the force behind the interactive campaign for the box office sleeper hit, District 9. Acclaimed as the interactive marketing pioneer for the entertainment industry, he is a well-known and highly respected executive with deep expertise in crafting business, marketing, and advertising models and managing nearly every aspect of digital media in the entertainment industry since the advent of the web. Stradella Road draws from Paddison’s recent experience as the head of New Media and Integrated Marketing at New Line Cinema and his oversight of cross-divisional national promotions and interactive marketing. Awarded Variety’s Integrated Marketer of the Year Award in 2005, Gordon has served on the Time Warner Research Council, as a member of the Board of Governors at the Producers Guild of America NMC and the interactive peer group of The American Television Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Stephanie Bohn – Director of Worldwide Marketing, Digital Distribution Warner Bros

Stephanie is responsible for global business planning and marketing for the studio’s theatrical and acquisition film slate across emerging media platforms including digital cable, satellite, IPTV, game consoles (Xbox 360, PlayStation 3), mobile devices and the internet (iTunes, Amazon VOD). She also launched and leads the iPhone app publishing business. Stephanie oversees all business development activities including programming/content development, IP licensing, contract negotiations, developer relations, marketing and client management. Manage marketing relationship with third party mobile game licensees including Glu Mobile and Electronic Arts. Provide creative and promotional support to partners. In her previous role as Director of Marketing Warner Home Video, Stephanie oversaw the DVD release of theatrical feature films. Supervised the development of business plans comprised of volume forecasts, release date, targeting, pricing, product configurations and all consumer and trade creative, media, publicity, and promotions. Led cross functional teams and managed direct reports to execute plans.

Travis Johnson – Managing Director, Universal McCann

Across his media career Travis has spent time on both sides of the buying and selling fence. Beginning his career at DDB/OMD he progressed from an illustrious press checking role to managing a small team before jumping ship into a radio sales. During his four years at Austereo Travis worked across some of Australia’s largest advertisers enjoying all aspects of working in radio, in particular the creation of promotions, events and more recently digital and integrated solutions for clients. In late 2005 he went back agency-side to Universal McCann where he was initially Client Service Director across clients including Microsoft and Intel, then moving onto the National Digital Director role. Since April this year has held the title of Managing Director, Sydney and is responsible for approximately $600m in client media spend and an agency of around 100 strategists, planners and buyers. He’s most proud of working in an agency where there is no digital team & every person at Universal McCann has been trained in digital and it’s a part of everything we do. This year the agency has been the most awarded at the IAB (digital media) awards for 2009 and has the most finalists of any agency for this year’s Media Federation Awards to be announced in October.

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