Bollywood studios likely to cut marketing budgets by 20-30% – Livemint

Aggressive marketing campaigns for Bollywood’s top movies, some of which extend for more than two months, are expected to take a significant hit as studios and producers deal with limited cash flows, slashing budgets by 20-30%.

“Logically, anything that requires physical interaction or engagement will be avoided keeping in view the need to avoid gathering of crowds and the threat to everyone’s health,” said Shikha Kapur, chief operating officer, studios, Eros International Media. “This is, however, an opportunity to build a robust digital ecosystem that can measure impact and value and can lead to efficiencies in planning.”

Kapur has worked on campaigns for films, such as Sanju produced by Fox Star Studios, which were digital-focused.

Bollywood marketing budgets, which in some cases, can be as high as 25-30 crore, have comprised common drills such as city tours, colleges, malls and sporting event visits, reality show appearances and newspaper ads. These aren’t feasible anymore.

“Adaptability is going to be key for any business. While fundamentals, such as a trailer launch, will still be big, physical events may not happen and a digital launch will be bigger,” said Rudrarup Datta, marketing head, Viacom18 Studios.

Deployment of media may shift over the coming months, though television will still remain important to drive awareness and reach, he said.

Reality show appearances, which would lead to mingling with a large crowd, would now perhaps be replaced by integrations with fiction shows shot in studios.

“Marketing will have a key role as it will be needed to not only create awareness for the film but also to catalyse consumer traction to bring them back to theatres,” Datta said.

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