A lot about Iron Fist has been pretty head scratching. That tradition of “What?!” continues with some new attempts to do viral or subversive marketing from Netflix and Marvel. The ideas are interesting but seem to be lacking in execution. Two have come to our attention here at the MCUExchange.
First of all is the “New York Bulletin” video which is embedded above. The concept is very similar to some of the Ant-Man and Captain America: Civil War videos featuring WHIH news shorts. Generally, these videos try to make a news clip from the world of the MCU, something you might see on TV if you lived in the world of heroes. As with the WHIH clips, this video is relatively lacking in production caliber. The script is stiff. Why is the narrator directly asking questions to the Meachums? Some of the relevant background information is heavy on exposition, but make a nice little primer for the show for new fans. What’s truly odd about the clip as a marketing tactic, however, is how it was rolled out. The clip wasn’t published until March 23rd, a week after release. Many fans were done with the show by then and new fans likely had their first taste of the program already. It’s also an unlisted video. The results are that only about 1,000 people have seen it. While the WHIH pieces were for movies with larger audiences and have been out a while, it’s hard not to compare that 1,000 viewers to the 5 million plus views on some of the predecessor’s videos.
Also, Netflix bought a domain and published a website for Colleen Wing’s dojo, over at http://thewingway.com. Very little content is on the site, save for a little basic cable style commercial for Wing’s classes. The site also name drops Claire Temple in the reviews section. In a way this is charming. In a world with squaresapce and wordpress, however, one wonders why Colleen has a website that apparently was designed in 1999. Again, it doesn’t seem like this “viral” attempt at marketing has been particularly viral. For one more easter egg click on the Rand advertisement at the bottom of the screen and check out Ward Meachum’s Linkedin page.
These forms of advertising have become important ways for studios to promote their properties without spending heavily on traditional advertising avenues. These particular two attempts seemed to fall pretty flat, however. The chatter about the site and video have been minimal. It would be awesome to see these ideas fleshed out with a little more energy and ability than these two particular examples.
If you still have not seen Iron Fist it is available on Netflix right now.