- Disney has partnered with Target on a new Friday Night Movie initiative that aims to supply families stuck at home with entertainment programming, according to a press release shared with Marketing Dive. The movies will be broadcast on Disney's channels ESPN, Freeform and FX between April 10 and May 1.
- Disney Advertising Sales' ad unit, CreativeWorks, developed custom content spots using videos of ESPN talent filmed in their own homes. These include PSAs about encouraging togetherness while people are homebound and also include commentary and trivia hosted by ESPN personalities Louis Riddick and Mike Golic.
- Target will sponsor the movie nights. The movies will include "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory," "Iron Man 2," "Guardians of the Galaxy," "The Book of Manning," "Transformers: The Last Knight" and "Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle."
Disney is looking for ways to connect to audiences who are stuck at home and these movie nights aim to offer fun entertainment and build togetherness during uncertain times.
As the sponsor, Target has an opportunity to stay relevant in front of its target audience of families by sponsoring entertaining content. The new CreativeWorks spots give the brand a platform to attach its name to fun trivia and positive messaging from well-known ESPN hosts. During the coronavirus pandemic, consumers could be less receptive to hard selling, and this association could be a positive one as consumers look for fun ways to pass the time they are in lockdown.
Ad productions have been challenged during the coronavirus and many productions have relied on older footage and voiceovers to do ads. Toyota, Hyundai and Ford are among companies to release new ads with earlier footage. This Disney project will feature ad units with television personalities hosting trivia, recorded in their own homes.
Marketers and broadcasters have been experimenting with how to generate new content at a time when it is unsafe to ask employees to leave their homes to come to work at the studio. DTC coffee brand Trade created a coronavirus-inspired ad using Zoom, highlighting the joys of getting together for a virtual coffee. Saturday Night Live hosted its show over the video conferencing platform Zoom last weekend, illustrating creative ways to get around these production challenges.