Dynamic Marketing Communiqué

“IT is closer than you think.” Find out how this film generated MASSIVE public anticipation! [Fridays: Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing]

August 27, 2021

Marketing and promoting a movie are quite challenging tasks.

As a marketer, you have to think of ways to compel the public to watch a particular film, even those who are only interested in watching movies under one genre.

Here’s a question for you: 

How can you make viewers want to watch a horror movie?

If you haven’t thought about a specific answer to that question yet, don’t fret. This guerrilla marketing campaign for a movie might be a good inspiration for you!

According to the All Time Worldwide Box Office for Horror Movies, IT was the highest grossing horror film of all time.  

The movie, which was released in 2017, was the film adaptation of the book authored by American writer Stephen King. 

What did the marketers of “IT” do to capture the attention of consumers and compel them to watch the film? 

In partnership with creative agency Mr. Glasses and guerrilla marketing agency Showtime Marketing, the campaign team created buzz by placing Pennywise’s (IT’s clown antagonist) red balloons on sewers around Pennsylvania, US and Sydney, Australia. 

Ah, the iconic red balloon that’s easily associated with the film and adds to the jump scare factor! 

The goal of the campaign was to take “IT” out of social media and into movie-goers’ doorsteps. 

Once consumers saw the red balloons, they took photos of the marketing stunt and talked about the movie on their social media accounts. 

The reactions of those who saw the balloons ranged from being amused by the marketing tactic to being terrified, thinking that Pennywise was just lurking nearby! 

This guerrilla marketing campaign was a simple yet brilliant and effective move. 

Even before “IT” was shown on theater screens, the movie’s teaser trailer gathered 197 million views in the first 24 hours since it was released, making it the 5th most viewed trailer. 

During the movie’s first week of showing, “IT” recorded a whopping USD 123.4 million in revenue! 

Note: The movie production cost a total of USD 35 million. By garnering over USD 100 million in revenue in just the first week, the production team not only got the budget back but also earned more!

Additionally, “IT” gained a total of USD 292.9 billion in licensed merchandise sales such as caps, board games, shirts, toys, and even classic vinyl figures that showed the movie’s trademark.

Marketing movies such as “IT” isn’t easy, especially because not all viewers are into horror films. 

Thanks to Mr. Glasses, Showtime Marketing, and the “IT” promotion team’s clever marketing tactic to raise awareness and generate buzz about the 2017 movie, a lot of people not only talked about “IT” online but also went to the theaters to watch the film themselves! 

Aside from that, Pennywise also became one of the most talked about topics on social media because of his creepy look.

Guerilla marketing helps brands capture the attention and pique the curiosity of their target market. 

This strategy also lets businesses create a lasting impression on their customers through a great level of creativity and imagination. 

In the case of “IT,” the simple-yet-iconic red balloons were all it took to generate buzz, awareness, and interest on the horror movie. 

Guerilla marketing doesn’t necessarily have to be too expensive to conduct! 

As long as your strategy is connected to your core business, your campaign has higher chances of going viral and building good relationships with your target market and future business partners. 

Make lasting impressions on your customers through your brand’s own “red balloons!” 

About The Dynamic Marketing Communiqué’s
“Fridays: Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing”

Jay Conrad Levinson (1984) said that Guerrilla Marketing “works because it’s simple to appreciate, easy to execute, and inexpensive.”

Guerrilla Marketing is unconventional.

Looking beyond the traditional ways of advertising, marketers, and advertisers need to spice things up in order for their brand to have campaigns that not only make an impact but also stick to their target market’s mind.

Guerrilla Marketing usually aims to have direct contact with consumers.

This type of direct contact should spark an emotional reaction that leads to consumers effectively remembering the brand.

It’s about making a big impression and making that impression last a long time (if not forever).

Guerrilla Marketing can be inexpensive.

The effect of this is being able to create a buzz around the brand, and the strategy used to market it. Almost everything is passed around through word-of-mouth.

Word-of-mouth is one of the greatest outcomes and it usually doesn’t cost anything.

This is every business’ or brand’s dream!

Every Friday, we publish tips, examples, and other useful content on unconventional ways of marketing and promotion.

Learn more about how to grab your target market’s attention and make an amazing first and lasting impression without having to spend a lot of money.

Businesses don’t really need to spend much for a guerrilla campaign. You do not need a big budget to be successful. You just need creativity and a good imagination.

Hope you’ve found this week’s guerrilla marketing insight interesting and helpful.

Stay tuned for next Friday’s Gorillas of Guerrilla!


Kyle Yu 
Head of Marketing
Valens Dynamic Marketing Capabilities
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