The barbie-core movement is sweeping around the globe leaving a trail of magenta-pink in its wake.
And no wonder, as Greta Gerwig’s latest summer smash hit was spared no effort when it comes to their marketing campaign.
Let’s take a deep dive.
With Warner Bros’ extensive advertising strategy estimated at a staggering $150 million (excluding the $145 million production budget), ‘Barbie’ had HUGE expectations to meet – and meet them it did using the power of nostalgia, influencer collaboration, pop-up events and stellar digital marketing.
Barbie Unboxed: A Sneak Peek
The foundation of any successful marketing campaign is creating excitement around the product. For the latest Barbie film, the marketing team released strategically timed teasers and trailers to captivate the audience’s imagination. These short glimpses provided hints about the storyline, characters and stunning visuals, generating curiosity and setting the stage for a much-anticipated release.
According to Warner Bros Film Marketing Guru, Josh Goldstine, one of the most electrifying moments in the marketing campaign for ‘Barbie’ happened at CinemaCon in 2022. A single image of Barbie cruising in her Corvette through Barbieland sparked an unanticipated frenzy amongst fans worldwide.
As filming took place in Santa Monica, anticipation mounted as onlookers snapped photos of Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling dressed in their multi-colour Dayglow outfits on the beach; free publicity that would ignite the flame for what soon became an unforgettable cinematic experience.
Living La Vie En Rose (or #e0218a)
The essence of Barbie Pink has always been deeply ingrained in the brand’s identity. With this latest movie embracing a strong girl-power theme, it’s no surprise that pink naturally became the dominant colour, epitomising the brand’s empowering message. The resonance of this Barbie-core concept in the world of fashion began to emerge early in the film’s development and has since held up on the pink-carpet, with celebs donning their brightest shades of magenta in support.
Barbie’s Digital Dream Team
In the era of social media dominance, collaborating with influencers has become a game-changer for marketing campaigns. The Barbie brand harnessed the power of online celebs to promote the film to a massive online audience. With influencers sharing their excitement and behind-the-scenes content, fans felt more connected to the movie, boosting engagement and sparking conversations across various platforms.
Barbie x Brands
To expand the movie’s reach beyond the cinema, the marketing team executed clever cross-brand collaborations. Barbie’s partnership with popular brands, relevant to the movie’s themes and target audience, helped create unique tie-in products. From STEM Barbie’s bright fuchsia Xbox to Disposable Income Barbie’s luxurious £1,128 Balmain cropped hoodie, these collaborations strengthened the movie’s presence in the market and appealed to both long-time Barbie enthusiasts and new fans alike.
Let’s Not Forget The ‘Barbenheimer’ Phenomenon
The ‘Barbenheimer’ phenomenon turned out to be an unexpected boon for the marketing of the Barbie film. The buzz and comedic responses generated online fuelled curiosity and anticipation around the movie’s release. The portmanteau term cleverly combined the stark contrast between ‘Barbie’, a fantasy comedy celebrating the iconic fashion doll, and ‘Oppenheimer,’ an epic biographical thriller delving into the life of physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer. The unique juxtaposition encouraged people to engage with the concept of the double feature, drawing attention to both films and prompting discussions about the thematic depth and appeal of ‘Barbie’ beyond its iconic doll image.
Pop-Up Events and Activations
In an era where experiences matter as much as products, the marketing team invested in immersive events and activations. Pop-up Barbie-themed experiences in major cities allowed fans to step into the movie’s magical world and interact with life-size Barbie displays, generating invaluable word-of-mouth marketing.
The latest Barbie film’s extraordinary success can be attributed in large part to its innovative and well-executed marketing strategies. By building buzz through teasers and trailers, embracing influencers, collaborating with brands and hosting immersive events, Warner Bro’s marketing team has successfully captured the hearts of audiences worldwide.
**This blog is dedicated to Ben Shapiro.