Disney Set to Blanket the Nation With 'Camp Rock' Promos

Hopes for Another Hit Franchise to Join Big-Screen-Bound 'High School Musical 3'

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- The summer movie blockbuster season isn't just limited to the big screen. As the Disney Channel proved last August with "High School Musical 2," children and families during the summer are just as likely to catch new releases in their living rooms as they are in theaters. With "HSM3" being prepped for a theatrical release in October, Disney is launching a marketing blitzkrieg for its next potential TV franchise, "Camp Rock."
Disney is going to hype 'Camp Rock' in the hopes of turning it into another franchise.
Disney is going to hype 'Camp Rock' in the hopes of turning it into another franchise. Credit: Disney Channel

The movie, which premieres June 20 on the Disney Channel, stars tween-music phenoms the Jonas Brothers and the Hannah Montana-in-the-making Demi Lovato. But with the entire Walt Disney Co. on board for the launch, look for marketing tie-ins to crop up virtually everywhere tweens and their parents consume media, including retail, print, radio and Disney's first venture into cinema ads, as well as a unique premiere schedule.

No escaping it
A partnership with Target, for example, will include a consumer product launch June 15 as well as a "Camp Rock" tie-in with the retailer's latest "Hello, Good Buy" TV spots, which will feature the Jonas Brothers singing the Beatles song that inspired the campaign. Other on-air sponsors Best Western and Ubisoft will pitch in through their own "Camp Rock" sweepstakes. The Jonas Brothers are also the subject of their own customized issue of People magazine, which will hit newsstands around the "Camp Rock" premiere and feature content tied to the movie.

And a "Camp Rock" trailer is already getting placement in movie theaters via a new partnership with Screenvision, which is airing the promo prior to movie trailers shown during family-friendly movies such as "Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian" and "Kung Fu Panda."

And that's to say nothing of the "Camp Rock" soundtrack, which hits stores June 17, meaning tweens will likely already have the words memorized to Ms. Lovato's show-stopping number "This Is Real, This Is Me" by the time the movie airs three nights later.

Richard Loomis, Disney's senior VP-marketing and creative, said the off-air spending for the "Camp Rock" campaign is the largest for any Disney Channel original movie, but he declined to give a specific dollar figure. But considering the number of different screens "Camp Rock" will be playing on the weekend of June 20, there's a lot to justify the marketing overhaul.

All Jonas, all the time
Fans who tune in to the June 20 premiere can also listen to an audio simulcast of the movie on Radio Disney's 42 stations and RadioDisney.com. But rather than rerun the movie ad nauseam on Disney Channel for the remainder of the weekend, "Camp Rock" will then move to Disney's broadcast sibling ABC for an exclusive premiere during "The Wonderful World of Disney," hosted by the Jonas Brothers. The next day, June 22, the movie hops over to ABC Family, where the network's younger-skewing parents and children will get a chance to see it before it moves to Disney.com the following Monday for full-length, full-screen video streams.

So many platforms, so many metrics to put up against them: The potential to reach larger swaths of unique audiences across each airing is certainly there, considering "High School Musical 2" reached a record 17.1 million viewers during its August premiere on Disney Channel alone. Kathy Ring, president of Starcom, Los Angeles, Disney's key media buyer, is hopeful that "Camp Rock" and its stars have the potential to be mentioned in the same breath as Miley Cyrus, Ashley Tisdale and Zac Efron in short order.

"They have the uncanny ability to be innovative and find the next new star and franchise. What we're trying to do with the media is to find the next way to be involved with them and engage with them, be where these families eat, work and play."

Measuring the success of "Camp Rock," Mr. Loomis said, "becomes very different, and in some respects bigger and more specific. We have an aggressive yet attainable reach goal in terms of unduplicated viewers across all the platforms we're looking to secure."

But wait, there's more
Beyond just the ambitious premiere weekend schedule, "Camp Rock" will also be measured by the success of repeat airings, sales of the soundtrack and consumer products, all of which will culminate in the release of "Camp Rock" on DVD Aug. 19.

"We're launching this not only on our own air but as a franchise property right out the gate. So it's about, how do we reach as many kids and families as we can?" Mr. Loomis added.
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