Sony Pictures Entertainment is marketing its new thriller “Don't Breathe” with the first 360-degree video within a Snapchat ad.
Snapchat's newest Snap Ad with attachment capability allows users to not only get a 360-degree rotating impression of the film's environment and characters, but also to move forward through the video to become fully immersed in the experience.
Online influencers from around the world came together in Spain for a July 28 event to use the latest technology to relive the experience of the horror film. The creators were welcomed by director Fede Alvarez and walked through a recreation of “Don’t Breathe” with night vision and GoPro cameras, with the aim of finding money that was hidden in different locations, under a strict timeline.
As part of the event, SPE International Digital Marketing debuted the Snapchat portion of the campaign. The 10-second advert appears as a Snapchat video ad, allowing users to swipe up in order to see the intimate 360-degree video through a web page inside the app. This first-time ad is rolling out in the United States followed by the United Kingdom and Australia.
The video was created by Los Angeles-based digital creative agency AvatarLabs, who worked with SPE’s digital marketing team and the movie director to bring the latest technology to the experience. Unlike many 360-degree videos where viewers simply turn in place, AvatarLabs designed the innovative production to push beyond this limitation, allowing viewers to not only rotate their view 360 degrees, but also move forward, providing a much more dynamic view of the terrifying scene and characters within.
The inclusion Alvarez in the creation of this marketing campaign is unprecedented in the movie space, according to Sony. Originally a YouTube creator himself, Alvarez worked closely with SPE International Digital Marketing to create this digital experience for other creators, evidencing the shift in Hollywood that now sees directors at the top level get involved with digital marketing campaigns.
“Audiences increasingly expect more from us and, as a result, digital marketing departments now have more access to provide higher quality content to satisfy this thirst for engaging content through the mobile phone,” says Aaron Wahle, senior vice president, international digital marketing at Sony Pictures Entertainment, in a release. “This, in turn, means that more thought must be put into activities across the board - it’s not just about one-sheets and trailers anymore, but about creating incredible experiences.”