As superheroes go, Iron Fist isn’t exactly Spiderman, The Hulk or Captain America. To the general public, he’s relatively unknown, which makes turning him into a lead character for an entertainment property a dicey move.
To connect with a broader audience for its upcoming Iron Fist series, Netflix has teamed up with theCHIVE for an under-the-radar marketing campaign directed at male Millennials. “What Netflix wanted to do was reach a cross-section of fans of comic books, contact sports and pure entertainment junkies,” Albert Briggs, vice president of brand strategy at theCHIVE, tells Marketing Daily.
The digital campaign, which launches on Wednesday, features exclusive content from the series that can only be reached via a secret code, specifically the “Up, Up, Down, Down, left, right, left, right, a, b” cheat code combination familiar to gamers from the '90s. Once the code is entered, fans will break down a wall using fists (much like the Iron Fist does) to access the exclusive content. The code is a way to connect the promotional content with that of the series, which follows a man who disappeared from society in the 1990s, Briggs says. (Fans can also enter the character’s name, Danny Rand, into theCHIVE’s search function to reach the content.) It will not be widely promoted; instead, fans will have to figure it out through theCHIVE’s community.
“You have to be in the know in order to be whisked away into the interactive experience,” Briggs says. “Our rollout is to let our community know about it, and watching it grow from there.”
In addition to the video content, theCHIVE has also created two articles directly related to the series -- one that summarizes all that Rand has been missing since disappearing in the '90s and another showcasing his role as part of Marvel’s Defender’s Universe. The promo will run on theCHIVE through March 26.