Cineplex Galaxy’s new digital cinema network offers flexibility, efficiency, and targetability
Cineplex Galaxy is making cinema much more attractive to advertisers with the launch of its new digital pre-show cinema network, Reel Entertainment. The pre-show is scheduled to run 20 minutes before the start of each film. Reel Entertainment premiers April 1 on 215 screens in 21 theatres in the Toronto extended market area and is expected to expand to 400 screens across the country by the end of the year.
Cineplex Galaxy is making cinema much more attractive to advertisers with the launch of its new digital pre-show cinema network, Reel Entertainment.
The pre-show is scheduled to run 20 minutes before the start of each film. Reel Entertainment premiers April 1 on 215 screens in 21 theatres in the Toronto extended market area and is expected to expand to 400 screens across the country by the end of the year.
While the use of digital technology offers many benefits to advertisers – including reduced costs – there are a few reservations about the medium. Chris Morandin, VP group media director at Starcom Worldwide in Toronto, says his only concern about pre-show activity is attendance, the number of people who will be in a theatre 20 minutes prior to the feature film to actually see it.
Morandin says the ability to target consumers on a regional basis or by film genre is extremely important for many brands and categories.
‘Obviously (beverage alcohol marketer) Diageo has concerns about advertising to people under legal drinking age so we have to be really sensitive in terms of movie titles. When we can pick the movies, it helps a lot. It’s the same with Nintendo – if they’ve got a game that’s mature-rated, they don’t want to advertise to kids.’
But Morandin does believe there are opportunities to reach many demos through cinema advertising. ‘Movies, especially for the younger demos, are certainly great touchpoints for them. The more (targeting) we can do to reach kids for Nintendo and young adults for Diageo, the better. It’s a huge opportunity to reach them, to really break through.’
Because the cinema network uses digital technology, the cost of production is much less than having to go to 35 mm film. This allows advertisers to repurpose TV spots and other digital video to use in cinemas, although Morandin advises against this.
‘As long as creative is developed for that environment, I think people accept it. The advertisers who have been doing that are doing a much better job.’
Morandin adds: ‘It’s like the Super Bowl – people tune in to see the ads. As long as they’re designed for cinema, people are going to be really receptive to them, but not if it’s something they’ve already seen on TV. Treat it like a movie trailer. [People] there to be entertained, so entertain them.’
In addition to the pre-show advertising opportunities, the digital technology gives Cineplex Galaxy the ability to offer sponsored short content and expand its pay-per-view offerings such as WWE, sporting events and concerts – and even rent theatres out for product launches, seminars and other events.
The cinema network is built on the Kodak Digital System architecture with projection technology from Christie Digital Systems of Kitchener, Ont. Cineplex Galaxy operates 86 theatres with a total of 775 screens in six provinces across Canada.