This paper seeks to explore a host of straight‐to‐DVD and direct‐download motion picture marketing, production, and distribution strategies deployed by Florida‐based Maverick Entertainment. The focus is Maverick's most prominent and successful sub‐genre “urban teen gangsta” films.
The somewhat wide‐ranging and eclectic approach taken in this paper draws from two emergent academic subdisciplines: consumer culture theory (CCT), largely on the business‐school side, and media industry studies (MIS), largely on the communications‐school side. The project thus attempts to bridge the interpretive poetics and eclecticism of CCT with the interpretive aesthetics and eclecticism of MIS and relies on a blend of filmic, marketing, PR, journalistic, trade publication, and academic evidence.
It is argued that “marketing mimicry” – where Maverick imitates specific successful urban‐teen themed cross‐over film marketing strategies of major and mini‐major Hollywood studio titles – was crucial to the start‐up's success.
Marketers outside the USA will find it somewhat difficult to glean generalizable lessons based on the strategies and principles evaluated here. Future research should be conducted in the area of direct‐download of urban teen filmed content, particularly vis‐à‐vis Maverick's new direct‐download partners such as Hulu, YouTube, Amazon VOD, Facebook Store, and Gigaplex. Future research should also look into the extent to which the somewhat pervasive notion of a “global teen audience” is valid for this sub‐genre of films.
Marketers are advised to thin‐slice the appeals of their teen‐themed product‐lines to maximize the appeal to given sub‐segments. Marketers may beneifit by developing ethical non‐harmful iterations of marketing‐mimicry in their market space.
Scholars who analyze teen‐themed marketing strategies often tend to construct some version of the “global teenager”. The current paper focuses largely on African American and Latino American teens.
This is the first paper to analyse how a small firm successfully markets to the urban American teen film audience. It is also the first academic paper to explore the concept of marketing‐mimicry.
Dalecki, L. (2012), "Maverick Entertainment presents “marketing mimicry”: targeting the urban‐American teen film‐viewer via DVD and direct‐download", Young Consumers, Vol. 13 No. 4, pp. 367-380. https://doi.org/10.1108/17473611211282617
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