A CAMPAIGN THAT TOOK A PAGE OUT OF DEADPOOL'S MERCENARY PLAYBOOK
Forget the fourth wall. Armed Mind's second campaign on the Deadpool franchise broke every wall, granting fans access to their favorite superhero in unexpected ways that challenged norms, standards, and...possibly a few HR regulations.
Yes, the first Deadpool was a massive success, but that only meant that all eyes were on the sequel. Our partners at Fox Home Entertainment faced a few new challenges:
- 1) Recatalyze core fans into the campaign after the theatrical campaign — and two years’ worth of boundary-pushing superhero film competitors
- 2) Balance tactical playbook with initiatives that both reward core fans while also driving buzz amongst mass fans
- 3) Proactively manage brand fatigue through initiatives that push boundaries in innovative ways
Right off the bat, our team knew we couldn’t rely on our three years’ worth of (very) intimate Deadpool experience. The new campaign couldn’t just embrace innuendo — it had to rewrite the playbook on how Deadpool as a brand could use self-awareness, absurdity, and a whole lot of ass jokes to hijack pop culture and deliver top-notch content that generated earned press, dropped jaws, and beat sales expectations yet again.
Looking for our work on the first Deadpool? Click here to visit the case study.
Client Fox Home Entertainment
Project Deadpool 2 Home Entertainment Global Marketing Campaign
What We Did
- Branding and Strategy
- Campaign Ideation
- Social and Digital Content
- Original Videos and Cinemagraphs
- UGC + Website Campaign
- Direct Email Campaign
THE (RECORD-BREAKING) MUSIC VIDEO
Deadpool 2 isn't just a movie star -- thanks to our campaign, he also became a musical icon. Leveraging the animatronic band that would greet fans at San Diego Comic-Con, we shot a "delightfully insane" sing-along music video that not only beat out every trailer and TV spot to become the top-performing video in the campaign, but generated coverage almost 100MM organic impressions from coverage by top outlets.
DEADPOOL GETS SOCIAL
Whether poking fun at Brad Pitt's "appearance" in the film with a cinemagraph or celebrating Friday the 13th, our social content leveraged iconic moments from the film to connect with fans and maintain buzz all campaign long.
NOW HIRING: THE X-FORCE CONTENT CAMPAIGN
Since Deadpool needed a new team, we decided to give him one. Our UGC-driven online application campaign let fans submit to join the “second coming” of the ill-fated X-Force. Here’s how it all went down.
PT 1: FANS APPLY TO JOIN X-FORCE
Phase 1: Deadpool posted “help wanted” posters around the digital neighborhood, asking fans and hero hopefuls to submit their credentials with a short, breezy, and Easter Egg-laden application. Coverage by core outlets amplified the effort, generating UGC applications under a hashtag.
PT 2: DEADPOOL WRITES BACK TO FANS
Phase 2: As fans began to submit their applications as UGC, Deadpool picked his faves. Then, as a surprise-and-delight moment, he doodled and annotated on fans’ actual applications, replying to them directly and re-activating the campaign with custom content curated for each fan.
PT 3: THE REJECT ROUND-UP
Phase 3: To generate interest in the initiative, we created faux rejects for X-Force, including fan-favorite Dopinder's own resume and Deadpool's mark-up of his qualifications. These completely fictional applicants helped legitimize fans' pursuit of a roster spot, and gave press partners assets to activate the campaign with.
WADE TAKES OVER THE X-MANSION
Deadpool's scenes in the X-Mansion were "instant classic" fan-favorites, and broke the fourth wall in ways that both core comics fans and mass fans of the X-Men film franchise could appreciate. Our takeover of X-Men's social channels by Deadpool kept that chatter going through a simple new cover image, profile image, and bio copy that suggested Deadpool was still in charge of Xavier's crib.
DELIVERING HOLY-SHIT MOMENTS
Deadpool may be a mercenary, but his sales messaging can never feel contractual. Adding lower-thirds and a bouncing ball to the buy-now spots helped add an irreverent tone to our main call-to-action, turning transactional content into one of the campaign's top-performing posts.
EMAIL BLASTS THAT WERE JUST THAT
Deadpool's time in the X-Mansion was short-lived, so we brought it back via fun cross-over messaging in one of several email blasts we built for the campaign. Each blast included exclusive content, helping boost engagement and tripling normal open rates.
CALLS TO ACTION
In addition to digital and social content, we helped execute transactional videos for retail partners to run on their own channels at launch.
THE SEQUEL TO FOX'S MOST SUCCESSFUL DIGITAL HOME ENTERTAINMENT RELEASE EVER.
Deadpool’s “second coming” proved that while sequels may be hard, a little absurdity (and a few animatronic puppets) can beat out even the most absurd of expectations. Through some downright ridiculous creative, best-in-class content strategies, and more than a few long nights on Blind Al’s couch, Deadpool 2 one-upped its original to become one of the most successful titles in Fox Home Entertainment history.