Typically, the more sequels a movie gets, the more it evokes images of suckage and cash grabs.
Noted franchises like Jaws, Resident Evil, Friday the 13th, and Scream come to mind when considering the carbon copies of movies that should have just tapped out after one or two. This brings us to Liam Neeson’s Taken series.
If you have seen the movie, you know that he plays a man with “a particular set of skills.” Understanding the plight of bad sequels, there needed to be a great stunt to get people interested. And then someone thought of a LinkedIn endorsement by Liam Neeson.
We’re suddenly interested in this movie now!
In Bryan Mills’ memorable “I will find you and I will kill you” speech in Taken, 20th Century Fox thought they had a certifiable hit on their hands. Liam Neeson had just become the next action hero (following his stellar work as Jedi master Qui Gon Jinn…).
The problem: Taken 2 took a lot longer to turn a profit.
Perhaps, Neeson was signed up for three movies already, so the production house had to think of something to get people interested in his set of skills again. They had an epiphany: get prospective moviegoers to flock to LinkedIn.
Yes, LinkedIn. You’ll see.
Interested in having that dude brag on you?
Follow the movie’s LinkedIn page, which enters you into a contest to have Neeson “find your LinkedIn profile, review it and record a video of [himself] endorsing your particular set of skills.”
Sure, this is creating followers out of nothing, but it is also creating awareness out of nothing too. PR case study authors, take note. It’s not like Liam Neeson’s endorsement will help you get a job at your next agency, but it doesn’t suck for fun around the water cooler.
For the record, entertainment marketing agency Trailer Park did both the creative work and the PR for this campaign (on our side, at least).