In one of the biggest no brainers in marketing history, this spring Marvel will start advertising key comics releases ahead of blockbuster movies and TV shows. It’s all part of the program to shore up periodical sales that they’ve been slowly rolling out, first to retail partners, then the public.

The PR doesn’t specifically mention MCU movies or TV, but that would be another no-brainer. It does mention ABC, which is owned by Disney, as is Marvel, so that’s an intercompany branding program. One might also guess that the ads would run before Disney movies.

While this sounds like the kind of investment that thrifty Marvel has been hesitant  to make before now, advertising before movies is pretty economical – otherwise why would there be so many ads for your local Thai place before movies? Cable advertising–the kind DC has been doing for a while for things like Rebirth and Vertigo – is also dirt cheap.

Maybe Marvel called in some synergy favors here?

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I know that more than a decade ago, movies selling print comics was an idea that was widely pooh poohed at Marvel, and finding a single volume to tie in to sprawling storylines such as the X-men movies or the MCU was difficult for a while. Marvel has gotten much smarter at it since then, and right now, Old Man Logan trades are dominating Marvel’s Amazon charts:

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Then there’s the batter of in movie branding. Logan contains a star turn for several X-men comics, however, possibly due to Fox/Marvel bickering, actual comics couldn’t be used and Joe Quesada and Dan Panosian had to draw new covers and interiors for non existent comics. Hopefully, these wont be the ones Marvel advertises.

First, Marvel Comics are coming to a theater near you! Beginning this weekend, keep your eyes peeled for special pre-trailer advertisements before some of 2017’s biggest releases! Including ads promoting Marvel’s highly-anticipated SECRET EMPIRE event ahead of select screenings of Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2!

Then, Marvel Comics come to the small screen with dedicated TV advertising and promotions. To be featured on ABC and other broadcast networks nationwide, fans can look forward to dedicated spots, on-air interviews, and more devoted towards Marvel’s biggest comic book launches this spring – SECRET EMPIRE and Marvel’s upcoming slate of X-MEN titles and more!

This year, Marvel continues to bridge the worlds of graphic fiction with all new audiences and now, with extensive advertising activations, the House of Ideas is set to reach entirely new audiences in 2017 and invite them directly into local comic shops! The biggest characters and creators are waiting for you at your nearest comic retailer!

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5 COMMENTS

  1. I think this is an excellent idea, but I also hope this isn’t like the “Ultraverse” advertising program umpty umpty years ago, where Malibu spent a ton of money on ads and things like construct5ion site banners AND DIDN’T BOTHER TO TELL LOCAL RETAILERS it was happening in their city.

    “Select screening” advertising isn’t going to do a lot of good without significant, individualized, outreach to impacted local retailers.

    -B

  2. I think every comic book movie/show should end with a quick disclaimer like, “Read the ongoing adventures of (insert hero’s name) each month in the pages of (insert series name)! Find your local comic book retailer by going to our website…” I watched several comic book movies over the years before I ever read a single comic book. Do you know what I did after every movie? I rushed home, pulled up Wikipedia, and read every past character storyline I could find to get more superhero fix. It never crossed my mind to buy a comic book. I didn’t know about digital comics. All people need is gentle prodding to go check out the actual comic books, so way to go Marvel for making this commitment to corporate synergy.

  3. Just what you want after paying $30+ to see a film adverts. I guess I’ll have to start skipping MCU films till Netflix now.

  4. This is a joke, not a serious effort at getting a large audience to read the comics
    The actual comics are too convoluted and mired in cultural marxism to attract a wide audience.

    If I were getting paid to drink the Kool-Aid, I’d believe Marvel wants to sell its comics to a wider audience, but I’m not, and so I don’t.

    At most we will see a few more 20 something cosplaying upper middle class Tumblrinas trickle into the stores but they won’t $tay and $pend money like unless Marvel employs more gimmicks which involve sticking it to the Patriarchy,birthers and Jesus freaks.

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