The Success of Branding in the Marvel Movie Universe

Written by: Jarriko Farrand, AAE of CWU Collegiate Sport Clubs

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For every house in America, the names of Iron Man, Thor, and Captain America are everyday names. Prior to 2008 and the release of Marvel’s first movie, Iron Man, it’s safe to say that they weren’t. However, after the massive success of the first Iron Man, Marvel Studios President, Kevin Feige, realized he had struck gold. Iron Man 2 opened in 2010 followed a year later by Thor and Captain America. In 2012, the stories were interconnected in the first superhero conglomerate: The Avengers.

Kevin Feige realized that by using big time names like Thor, Iron Man, and Captain America and then branding them, he could create a desire to see more. By throwing these brand icons into one movie together, he created a frenzy of worldwide excitement across the internet.

blog1Marvel’s success also relies on its casting. Shying away from using big names for every role (Tom Cruise was originally supposed to be cast as Iron Man), it has branded, in some part, the actors in which they use. For example, picture Chris Evans or Robert Downey Jr. in any role other than Captain America or Iron Man. It’s difficult to do because Marvel has so successfully branded and sculpted them into their characters. The introduction of the Samuel L. Jackson into the movies was also a giant move in bringing in the right people for the job. The critically acclaimed Jackson, who is widely admired, was introduced at just the right time for Marvel and has done well in furthering their success.

blog2.pngMr. Feige then created a lineup and timeline of slated Marvel movies. People see “Marvel” and they get excited. And that enthusiasm hasn’t declined over the course of 13 movies. Marvel has produced an unbelievable $10.08 billion from box office revenue alone. That isn’t even factoring in the amount of free advertising they receive or the deals worked out with companies trying to use the Marvel franchise to cross advertise.

And every time when the next movie in the Marvel saga is announced, this excitement peaks again. Whether it be searches on Google, videos across Youtube, or product advertisers piggybacking off of Marvel, Mr. Feige has successfully marketed and propelled his company’s name into an iconic and domineering force in the world of cinema.

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