July 15, 2013

Marketing on Instagram: What Does the First Trailer on the Photo App Mean for Filmmaking?

Steve Jobs movieBack in March we talked about how a "flip book effect" became "the world's first Instagram film experience." Given the advancements in video recording and sharing, not only by Instagram, but similar platforms, like Vine, my excitement seems cute now -- like when I played Star Fox on Super Nintendo for the first time ("How are these graphics possible?") And as always, new ways are being found to use Instagram, like in the case of Jobsthe Steve Jobs film starring Ashton Kutcher, being the first to use the app to upload a trailer. Are we about to see apps like Instagram and Vine become marketing and advertising platforms?

The days of casually and almost anonymously uploading your photos to Instagram are pretty much over. I remember getting my first follower on Instagram, and I was surprised, because I didn't even know that was a part of the app.

Since then, Instagram and Vine are being used more frequently by users as a marketing tool, whether for a large business or individual looking to get their name out there, because now people are following them. The marketing team behind Jobs must've known that they could reach more people, especially those glued to their phones, if they put the trailer up on one of the most popular apps ever downloaded.

Since Instagram has a 15-second limit on video capturing, the trailer doesn't pull any punches (it can't afford to.) It tugs at your heartstrings and inspires you with that line, "The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do." Check it out below:

Instagram isn't the first to put ads in their members' feeds. Sneak-peeks for Wolverine showed up on Vine in March, titillating its fans with short clips of the film.

It may be only a matter of time until studios, as well as independents, start putting their marketing pedals to the metal on platforms like Instagram and Vine, and take full advantage of the potential reach of these apps, much like they did with social media giants Facebook and Twitter.

And really, this could be a good thing for independent filmmakers, because essentially you have the opportunity to cast a wide net for free. Free marketing is always good.

What do you think about photo/video apps like Instagram being used for marketing? Do you currently use them to market your films? Let us know in the comments.

Link: Instagram Enters Movie Trailer Biz With 'Jobs' (Video) -- Variety

Your Comment


This is really cool, stoked to have access to such easy to use marketing tools for free.

July 15, 2013 at 4:27PM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM

Patrick Rebstock

Like you said any bit of free marketing is a good thing. I've used Instagram to post movie screenshots and photos from screenings of my feature film "Lazarus Go Home". Probably should have spent more time trying to build up a following for the movie while in production but gotta exhaust every resource now that I can and Instagram was just another avenue. I would put a trailer on Instagram as well but I don't think you can upload videos to it yet, just record with the camera. #lazarusgohome

July 15, 2013 at 5:02PM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM


They may have simply filmed the trailer playing on a screen from their phone?

July 15, 2013 at 5:09PM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM

David J. Fulde

I'm sure that when it's a real advertisement they can pay extra to upload content edited in a NLE and not just the app.

July 15, 2013 at 7:26PM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM


The audio sounds too good to be from the internal speakers on the phone....

July 17, 2013 at 10:17AM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM


For filmmaking? Absolutely nothing.

July 16, 2013 at 11:12AM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM


that Instagram trailer was decent. I liked the way Telltale used Vine to tease their The Walking Dead: 400 Days release though

July 17, 2013 at 12:35PM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM

Christian Davis

We actually employed this technique the day that Instagram added their video feature. We had the idea to offer a "sneak peak" of an upcoming film of ours for those who followed us on Instagram in an effort to get more followers.

July 17, 2013 at 2:48PM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM


When Instagram started out, it was simply a way to post pictures with your fans and did not have a lot of marketing value.However, in the last few years Instagram has proven to be an effective platform for marketers to reach a new audience in a way the audience wants to be marketed to.

July 18, 2013 at 3:19AM, Edited September 4, 8:21AM


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