Cineworld puts focus on Unlimited loyalty scheme in movie-inspired campaign

Cineworld has taken inspiration from the world of movies with its latest advertising campaign, designed to raise awareness of and attract consumers into its Unlimited card scheme.

The 'Groundhog Day'-inspired campaign was developed by creative agency Twelve and production house, Pink Banana Studios. It urges viewers to break their routine with a trip to the cinema, inspired by Murray's lead role in the 1993-comedy.

Backed by an orchestral cover version of Sonny and Cher’s ‘I Got You Babe’, actor Phil Dunster breaks away from a repetitive, mundane life with a trip to the cinema.

Casey Cohen, head of marketing at Cineworld, explained: "We’ve promoted this campaign in the style of a film. It gives us an opportunity to tell the story over time and keep the campaign fresh."

Inspired by cinematic content from Direct Line, HP and BMW, action-packed spots featuring Harvey Keitel, Christian Slater and Clive Owen respectively, Cineworld adopted a new approach to marketing the 10-year-old membership scheme.

"Using a content-led marketing campaign and brand storytelling to get our product benefits across is very different from the more traditional sales messages [we’ve used in the past]," said Cohen.

"The product itself is a decade old. There is a high level of awareness of it so we needed to find a more original and creative way to communicate what the product benefits are and how it could improve your life."

The campaign was teased like a Hollywood movie with quick hints at the coming movie released throughout May.

The short movie lands in cinemas today (31 May) - the primary channel for the campaign that looks to upsell casual movie-goers.

Away from screens, it will lean on movie poster-style artwork for OOH networks, first with a light comedic tone (left) and then romcom style (right) later in the year. Online, it will buy into IMDB, YouTube, social media and video on demand services.

"We wanted to be where people would be when they're in the film mindsets. Whether they are researching films on IMDB or looking at trailers on YouTube, reading about them in The Metro [it has bought a cover wrap]," Cohen explained.

“You see a lot of more and more brands sort of using this storytelling technique to cut through to consumers who are a bit bored of seeing the same thing, a sales message.”

Subscriptions

The Cineworld Unlimited membership model is dependent on winning the loyalty of movie-lovers, tying them into the £17.90 a month membership. Discounts on food and drink will entice visitors to indulge in drinks and snacks where a greater profit margin is evident.

But it's competing with a raft of other entertainment subscription services, Netflix and Amazon Prime Video being the market leaders.

"We are not direct competition to Netflix or Amazon, they are very different products. Cinema is a social event. People need to leave the house and find new ways to entertain themselves," said Cohen.

"Cinema is a shared experience, you see new movies as soon as (or before) they're released… on the biggest screens imaginable. It is very different from watching movies or box sets at home."

But, like the tech giants the company is increasingly using data and personalisation to inform customers of the value their Unlimited card provides.

Once part of the ecosystem, customers are sent tailored monthly newsletters, content and special offers. In particular, their viewing habits are fed back to them, they are informed how many movies they saw that month, how much money their membership saved them and more, all illustrated with graphics.

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