Why Does the Barbie Movie Marketing Campaign Work So Well

The Barbie movie launch is finally here! The premiere follows several months of social media build-up, making it arguably one of the most anticipated productions of the past few years. Those who haven’t been paying attention might wonder what the fuss is about. 

While we could argue that the movie’s appeal is largely due to its nostalgia element. It certainly doesn’t hurt that the cast of this Warner Bros’ latest work boasts some of Hollywood’s most beloved stars, such as Ryan Gosling and Margot Robbie. The blockbuster’s soundtrack also features artists like Dua Lipa and Nicki Minaj, along with Barbie’s original song, Barbie Girl, by Aqua.

The above reasons make a solid argument for the up-and-coming motion picture’s projected success. Nonetheless, we should also give credit where it’s due.  

Long before the launch, the movie stood out for the unprecedented quality of its marketing campaign. From the broad range of product partnerships to the use of the ever-recognizable “Barbie pink” color. Even AI and interactivity features have made everything about the Barbie movie marketing strategy has been ever-encompassing. 

In fact, despite being rated PG-13 by The Motion Picture Association of America, the marketing campaign for the Barbie movie cleverly appeals to both nostalgic adults and young girls. 

The movie’s marketing campaign taps into the nostalgia of adults who grew up playing with Barbie dolls. These adults, who now have fond memories associated with the brand, are likely to feel a sense of excitement and relatability when they come across the ever-present promotional materials for the Barbie movie.

The Barbie movie marketing campaign cleverly leverages Barbie’s brand

Ever since its 1959 debut by Ruth Handler, it became apparent that Barbie would remain an icon for generations to come. Named after Ruth’s daughter Barbara, the doll was a response to the then-limited diversity in toy choice. Handler was reportedly inspired to create a doll that could reflect the uncapped potential she saw in her daughter.

Along with the unusual aesthetics compared to the more traditional baby dolls of the time, the iconic Mattel Barbie was the first doll to show young girls that they could become whatever they wanted. In turn, allowing them to imagine a future in the workforce holding exciting and important positions from doctor to architect and, later on, even astronaut.

This powerful and avant-garde message, paired with unprecedented and memorable aesthetics, has contributed to the lasting success of the brand. 

The strong visual element of the brand is, of course, also a vital component of the Barbie movie. In the weeks leading to the premiere, lead actor Margot Robbie was spotted wearing Barbie-inspired outfits designed by haute couture brands such as Versace and Vivianne Westwood.

Needless to say, the hip looks and highly recognizable “Barbie doll” hot-pink do wonders in terms of product placement and anticipation. By tapping into the evergreen Barbie brand, the movie’s marketing team has made sure to go above and beyond to remind us of the impending launch months before its time.

Barbie-themed products are popping up everywhere

Brand collaborations are among the most effective ways to broaden a brand’s target audience, brainstorm the creation of new content, and help set a product apart. 

Naturally, this successful strategy is not lost on the brains behind one of the most ground-breaking campaigns of our time.  The Barbie movie has, in fact, partnered with an array of brands to create Barbie marketing collabs. This has allowed for an outreach that goes beyond the movie-loving crowds and across all social media and internet users – that is to say, virtually everybody.

From Burger King’s Brazil-exclusive Pink Burger to Tangle Teezer’s Barbie-themed hairbrush and Barbie-themed Crocs, the branding operations are determined to penetrate as many aspects of everyday life as possible. 

Nothing is stopping hard-core Mattel Barbie fans from indulging in tasty hot-pink Pinkberry swirls from the comfort of their Barbie-style Joybird sofa. They can even take it a step further by spending a few nights at Barbie Malibu DreamHouse, a literal dream come true now available on Airbnb at a surprisingly convenient price.

Even social media influencers have jumped on the Barbie train

The Barbie frenzy could not leave the social media influencers immune. A quick search on TikTok will bring up countless results for Barbie-themed outfits and even recipes for a Barbie-themed party.

With the hashtag #Barbie trending off the charts, social media stars have taken the opportunity to grow their traffic and fan base. They did so by crafting attractive hot-pink decorations, drinks, and even cakes to give young girls and seasoned Barbie fans the chance to recreate the atmosphere of the magical Barbie world.

As the movie makes its way across theaters around the world, we can only expect this trend to keep growing exponentially. So brace yourself for a lot more pink this Summer season!

You can become Barbie thanks to AI & Metaverse

If you need more evidence of Barbie’s movie attunement with the latest trend, look no further. 

The gigantic Barbie movie marketing campaign has not only mastered but arguably transcended the power of social media. This has turned the Barbie movie into one of the most discussed pop-culture topics of the year, an accomplishment made possible thanks to the latest-generation AI tools.

The movie giant Warner Bros released a Barbie Selfie Generator to allow Barbie fans to embody their heroes. It has created a social media stir that inspired millions of people worldwide to post their Barbie and Ken-styled selfies.

What’s more, Forever 21 has partnered up with Mattel for an exclusive Barbie collection available in-store and in the Metaverse. The physical collection features a Barbie “capsule” of  76 pieces across an array of style categories available on e-commerce platforms and in selected stores. 

An additional Forever 21 collab with Virtual Brand Group (VBG) has led to the creation of an AI-designed Barbie fashion collection. It allows users to create and run their own Barbie clothes store from scratch. The designs from the virtual collection will be similar to what’s available in store. It will even feature Forever 21 x Barbie pieces available exclusively in the Metaverse. 

We’re living in a Barbie world 

As the countdown to launch day is finally over, our most educated guess is the Barbie movie will be a success. Warner Bros anticipates a profit of over $350 million within the United States, reaching a total earning of over $750 million globally.

This is a considerable achievement for a relatively low-budget blockbuster with a  $145 million investment.

To the best of our knowledge, the Barbie marketing budget is estimated at $100M. Which is a fairly contained budget compared with the projected return on investment.

The thoughtfully crafted Barbie marketing campaign has mastered the delicate balance of creating allure and expectation around the movie. They did this all while not revealing too much about the storyline itself. The sense of mystery is maintained even on the movie’s imdb page, yet enough to lead the crowds to the movie theaters.

Should the production not meet the anticipated success (which is highly unlikely), it is safe to assume the promotional campaign will be remembered as one of the most creative and innovative of the last couple of years. This campaign is sure to mark a before-and-after moment in the history of marketing.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *