Cinema Advertising: Effective Storytelling

Cinema advertising can be described as the pre-show ads that are presented to a cinema audience before the main movie begins. Although cinema advertising is commonly referred to the ads that are presented to the consumer on the big screen, the advertising may start before the consumer even enters the auditorium.This is done with movie posters in the cinema lobby and branded packaging of concessions. While these strategies are subtle, they have still been found to leave an impression on consumers. 

Many brands have relatively recently begun to seriously consider using cinema advertising to tell their brand story. This is due to a number of factors including being able to communicate to a highly engaged and captive audience. Demographic information also helps marketers to target a very specific cinema audience with their brand messaging. There is also little room for the audience to experience distractions. This is mainly due to the culture of watching a movie in the cinema; as it is considered inappropriate to talk after the lights have been dimmed. The big screen, quality sound system and darkened room all impact consumer behaviour and lead to a more attentive cinema audience. 

Marketing Advantages 

When considering the direct marketing implications of cinema advertising, brand recall is the main one. According to some studies brand recall can be 5-6 times higher than that a consumer experiences from watching an advertisement on tv. Consumers also consider brands that are advertised on the big screen to be more credible. Certain studies have also found consumers to remember advertisements shown in cinema more than on tv. Overall cinema advertising is better received than ads on tv. Cinema ads are also considered key elements of the movie going experience. Even consumers that don’t enjoy ads would rather watch them than nothing before their movie starts. 

As cinema advertising is seen to have an influence on cinema audiences, there is certainly an opportunity for both cinemas and advertisers to fully utilise this channel in order to effectively communicate with their target audience. 

Advertising Accord 

Upgrade your cinema advertising process with Advertising Accord, Unique X’s most technologically advanced cinema advertising management software. Advertising Accord helps brands take full advantage of the power of cinema advertising by providing delivery optimisation, dynamic scheduling and inventory management and monetisation. 

Key Features: 

  • All year round support from our in-house experts
  • AI scheduling to create the most profitable playlists
  • Fully integrated with any Theatre Management System vendor
  • Automated workflow so your business needs less manual processes
  • Optimised use of inventory, AA can schedule an individual playlist for each and every show

Learn More About Advertising Accord Here 

About Unique X 

Unique X is a brand for the future of digital cinema, providing intelligent autonomous solutions and content services. Unique X operates in 80 countries globally and specialises in delivering innovative cinema software. To date, more than 200 million GB of data have been transferred, and over 300 million advertising playlists have been delivered. Cinema solutions include RosettaBridge TMS (Theatre Management System), RosettaNet Circuit Management System, Movie Transit (Digital Cinema Package Content Delivery Network), Basekey (KDM management), RosettaPOS (Point of Sale), RosettaLive (Event Streaming) and our suite of sophisticated pre-show products of Advertising Accord, AdTransit and SmartTrailering. 


  • Owczarski, K., 2013. Come Early and Enjoy the (Pre-)Show: Screenvision and the Growth of Cinema Advertising. Quarterly Review of Film and Video, 31(2), pp.148-160.
  • Frison, S., Dekimpe, M., Croux, C. and De Maeyer, P., 2014. Billboard and cinema advertising: Missed opportunity or spoiled arms?. International Journal of Research in Marketing, 31(4), pp.425-433.
  • Yuan, S., 2017. An investigation of the influence of cinema environment on advertising effectiveness. International Journal of Advertising, 37(4), pp.591-608.
  • AdWorld. 2018. Research Shows that Cinema Goers Value Advertising. [online] Available at: <>.
  • n.d. What we know about cinema advertising | WARC. [online] Available at: <>. 

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