Cinema is unquestionably the most emotionally impactful medium on earth. For sheer size and scale, it is hard to beat the seduction of the very best storytelling, recreated by the best directors, envisioned with the most cutting-edge production techniques, and played out to the highest audio visual standards in state-of-the-art comfort surroundings.
It is an environment in which we can truly lose ourselves, create our own aspirations and engage with the content on the big screen, whether that’s the latest sci-fi blockbuster, action thriller, fantasy or romcom release.
At the same time, we now live in the era of the connected consumer, where mobile and the appetite for two-way interaction are realities.
Cinema offers consumers the same escapism as gaming — it’s just as universal in its appeal; yet until the advent of digital, the opportunity to create that two-way link and interaction between the big screen and the cinemagoer was unchartered territory.
Cinime was therefore conceived and created by cinema for cinema to deliver a dynamic new second screen experience to plug into the passion point of film, and to enable brands to engage with and entertain people before and after the movie. The media industry has to adapt to changing consumer behaviour, given the ubiquity of the mobile and the necessity of providing brands with deeper and more meaningful opportunities for consumer conversations.
For the cinema industry, this raises the dichotomy of preserving the sanctity of a traditionally mobile-free big screen oasis, while responding to audience demand for interactivity, added value and rewards. The cinema industry and Digital Cinema Media (DCM), as media owners, could choose to ignore this trend, or attempt to ban mobile use. Or we can be pragmatic, embrace it and ensure an element of control that will enhance and enrich the overall cinema-going experience.
Cinime allows brands to establish a two-way experience with the audience before, during and after their cinema trip through rewards, offers, bonus content and other benefits. At the same time, the app has been designed to complement, not interrupt the cinematic journey. For example, the low-light emitting interface ensures minimal disturbance for other cinemagoers, the app is silent, and all rewards and treats remain locked until the film is over.
The ability to link the little screen to the big screen is facilitated by a clever audio watermarking technology, developed by DCM’s technology partner Yummi, which seamlessly connects mobile to on-screen content without the need for Wi-Fi or mobile network coverage. An inbuilt image recognition reader allows app users to interact with printed materials or posters, bridging the gap between the big screen and other media, as cinema evolves into a multi-platform offering.
One good example of a brand embracing the playfulness of Cinime is BMW, which ran a three-week interactive screen time campaign promoting the new BMW 2 Series Coupé earlier this year. Cinemagoers used Cinime to pick the perfect driving line, acceleration, and breaking point into a corner. The fastest to select the correct answers and register for the competition were invited to participate in a track day racing BMWs, and the winner of the track day will be named BMW’s Ultimate Driver and test-drive every new BMW model released over the course of a year.
Over 25,000 people took part, and 25% of them went on to find out more, directly from the brand. What I like about this campaign is that it has given the audience an opportunity to use their mobiles in an entertaining way, and it’s given BMW the opportunity to engage with prospective drivers using the combination of the impact of the big screen and the intimacy (and recentness) of the small screen.
Recent Cinime campaigns from advertisers such as PlayStation and Three mobile showed a similar deeper brand engagement. Film fans could use Cinime to play along in The PlayStation Big Screen Quiz to win treats for their next cinema trip, while 70% of users exposed to Three’s Sing it Kitty on-screen ad went on to interact with the bonus mobile content they unlocked. DCM is in the early stages of its forage into the second screen, but results so far suggest that there is a great opportunity to offer a more exciting and engaging environment for audiences and brands alike.