MySpace Top Draw For Young Movie Fans

MySpace MoviesIt's no secret that MySpace has become a key part of the promotional machinery behind big Hollywood releases. Now the social network has produced metrics underscoring the leading role it plays connecting studios with young audiences.

According to a Nielsen study commissioned by MySpace, the site is the top Web destination for 15- to-24-year-olds looking for information on new movies. Nearly 30% of consumers in that coveted demographic turned to MySpace first for movie searches, beating out Yahoo and Google, each with 23%. AOL trailed with 14%.

MySpace for the first time also tied Yahoo as the first stop for movie information online among 15- to-34-year-olds, with 25% citing each as the top site for researching new releases. Google was a close second with this group--at 24%, followed by AOL, again at 14%.

The study by Nielsen NRG, a Nielsen Co. unit that focuses on market research for the entertainment industry, was based on 13 Hollywood and independent releases in the last two years including "The Omen," "John Tucker Must Die," "300," "Forgetting Sarah Marshall," "Get Smart," and "The Dark Knight."

Some 44% of consumers ages 15 to 34 who had seen ads or information tied to the 13 films surveyed had viewed that content on MySpace. That figure increased to 46% among those ages 15 to 24, compared to 26% on Yahoo, 18% on Fandango and 12% on AOL's Moviefone.

The younger age group is especially active on MySpace--with 70% maintaining an active profile on the site, which had nearly 60 million unique visitors in September, according to Nielsen Online.

The report also found that the Internet edged out TV as the main source of information on "The Dark Knight" among the 15-to-34 crowd. Males ages 15 to 24 said they relied more on the Web for overall movie information, compared to 53% citing TV.

"An intelligent mix of media, with interactive advertising as a key component, is essential," said Donald Buckley, senior vice president, Interactive Marketing at Warner Brothers, in a statement. "If it's seasoned with targeted editorial, valued syndicated content, creative use of technology, strategic messaging, and a lively social component, even better."

Warner Bros. last year used MySpace to build a highly successful online campaign for the sword-and-sandal epic "300." The film's MySpace page resulted in 8 million viewings of the trailer, more than 200,000 friends and billions of ad impressions. More importantly, the movie itself went on to gross $456 million worldwide.

In addition to trailers, movie promotional pages on MySpace often include things like contests, screensavers, wallpapers, do-it-yourself content and songs and podcasts tied to new releases.

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