To infinity …

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Tron: Legacy releases in 3D on December 16

3D cinema provides a new dimension for advertisers

See also: Showcase is an advertising supplement created by Idealog. For information on upcoming Showcases call Vernene Medcalf on 09 360-5700 or 021 628-200 or email vernene@

The success of 3D movies such as Avatar, Toy Story 3, Shrek Forever After and Alice in Wonderland shows that the technology is now driving more bums on cinema seats than ever before.

But can advertisers participate in the 3D revolution?

Why yes. New Zealand’s first 3D ad, for Mini Soho, ran earlier this year and many other 3D ads now at various stages of development.

Val Morgan sales director Natasha O’Connor says that the advent of 3D cinema is a hugely exciting opportunity. “It allows brands to stand out as they never have before. Ads can either be created for 3D from the outset or existing ads can be transferred to the 3D format very cost-effectively with excellent results.”

Converting an existing 2D ad to 3D for cinema is not an expensive process; creating a 3D ad from scratch typically increases production costs by around 10 – 20 percent.

Mini’s 3D commercial ran as part of their campaign for the exclusive Mini Soho.

Mini marketing manager Dave Hewitt says the Soho launch needed differentiate itself from the masses. “The Mini SOHO campaign used a number of new media channels and the SOHO 11 3D ad was a good example of taking cinema advertising to another level—a first for New Zealand. Val Morgan did a great job of understanding what the Mini brand is all about and creating something that would truly resonate with Kiwis.’

There are currently 30 3D screens throughout New Zealand, with more planned for installation. This growth, coupled with a packed and diverse 3D release slate ahead, sets the scene for more and more advertisers to capitalise on the unique benefits of this exciting new format.

Cinema boom

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It’s not just 3D that’s enjoying a stellar year. After a record breaking year in 2009, the New Zealand Box Office is on track for another record in 2010. The first six months finished 18 percent ahead year-on-year, fuelled by the huge success of movies like Avatar, Boy, Alice in Wonderland, and Iron Man 2.

More recently Shrek Forever After, Toy Story 3 and the Twilight Saga Eclipse all helped New Zealand cinemas record their highest ever seven day trading figures.

This momentum doesn’t look like slowing down with a huge line-up and diversity of blockbuster movies ahead, including Eat Pray Love, Despicable Me (3D), Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 (3D), Tron Legacy (3D), The Chronicles of Narnia: Voyage of the Dawn Treader (3D) and Little Fockers among many others.

With box-office and attendances at record levels and an exceptional outlook ahead this is an ideal time to include cinema in your advertising plans.

Effectiveness research

Attendance is certainly up but does it translate into effectiveness for advertisers? Extensive international research has recently been conducted that shows how cinema’s attributes in terms of the captive audience, unique environment and unrivalled advertising impact translate to quantifiable measures of advertising effectiveness.

The research involved 11 advertising campaigns from leading brands across a range of product categories. Looking at consumers impacted by each medium, the research found that cinema added potency to the effectiveness of TV advertising, significantly increasing the likelihood to buy the advertised brand.

The research was conducted by AMR Interactive on behalf of Val Morgan and involved over 4000 online interviews.

In each campaign the same creative execution ran concurrently on both cinema and television to ensure an objective study of the role of both media. Measures of brand perception and future purchase intent were then compared amongst people impacted by the advertising on cinema and on TV.

Propensity to buy

People who saw the advertising on cinema and TV demonstrated a three-fold increase in propensity to buy the brand, compared to the uplift measured amongst those seeing the ad on TV only.

Per media dollar spent, the combination of cinema and TV was found to be 36% more effective in driving increased intention to purchase than TV alone. Proving that cinema, when used in conjunction with TV, delivers a higher uplift in propensity to buy for advertisers than the same budget used exclusively on TV.

Brand image and perception

Those aware of cinema and TV advertising also rated the brand more highly in terms of liking, image, advocacy and value for money than those aware of TV advertising only.

The research program was the most extensive study on cinema advertising ever conducted in the region.

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