Ra.One- Redefining Movie Marketing Strategies

Published by MBA Skool Team, Published on October 20, 2011

The Indian film industry or Bollywood, as it is popularly known, is one of the biggest and highest revenue generating industries in India. The Indian Film industry is a much bigger industry than Hollywood, as over 800 films are made every year, with approximately 15 million people in India going to theatres every single day to catch a glimpse of their favorite stars. Ever since its inception, movie making business has changed in leaps and bounces, and now it is a full-fledged business which requires management, advertising, promotion, operational processes etc. Over a period of decades, the Indian movie industry has churned out movies, some of them generating revenues of over Rs100 crore. However, in 2011 Indian super star Shah Rukh Khan’s magnum opus has redefined the ways movies are being marketed in India.

Popular film star Shah Rukh Khan’s movie Ra.One had generated buzz even before the movie was to be released. With a marketing budget of around Rs52 crore, a staggering Rs15 crore is spent simply on online advertising.

Some of the innovative marketing strategies which have caught the imagination of a population of over a billion Indians and others are discussed below.

Production and branding

The movies biggest USP is the presence of Bollywood film star Shahrukh Khan as a super hero. This concept in itself is very unique and has been used sparingly in the Indian film industry. The fact that India’s most popular film star, coming up in a new avatar, caught the imagination of everyone. Apart from this, roping in popular international singer Akon added a different dimension to the branding of the movie.

Advertising, marketing and co-branding

Newspapers, popular websites, magazines, music channels etc were and are all flooded with advertisement posters of the movie, showcasing to the people the unique characters much before the movie is released. Tie-ups with popular brands is also done as a part of co-branding and increasing the credibility of the movie.

Selling movie rights

Even before its release, Ra.One managed to earn a revenue of Rs132 crore simply by giving away the rights of the movie. The brand equity of film star Shahrukh Khan is unparalleled and his presence in the movie gives a huge boost to distributors and companies to get associated with the brand. Star India got the rights for Ra.One at around Rs40 crore. Apart from this, the music rights were bought for Rs15 crore by T-Series. The producers got a whopping Rs77 crore from Eros Entertainment to own the distribution rights of the movie.


As far as Bollywood is concerned, no movie has been associated with exclusive movie merchandise products. Krish tried that but was not too successful not it was handled too professionally as is in the case of Ra.One. Merchandising enables the target audience to relate to the brand and helps them become a part of the product. Ra.One is the first movie in India to come up with an all exclusive store having merchandise for the people to purchase. Toys, computer accessories, t-shirts, apparels, stationery, coffee mugs, wrist bands, watches etc were all a part of the merchandising available online as well as at popular destinations like McDonalds.

Video Games and Comics

While video games related to movies are a popular concept in Hollywood, it is a fairly new concept in Bollywood. Sony along with Red Chillies released a Play Station 3 game for Ra.One featuring all the characters. Also, it was the first movie to come up with a comic series showcasing the characters and promoting the film. Even iPad and Android apps are available for Ra.One movie. Aamir Khan had also done the same thing with Ghajini when he launched a PC game.

Release and Premiere

The movie would be released at over 3000 screens in India and over 1000 screens overseas. Apart from this, premieres at international destinations like Dubai, Toronto and London, which have a high popularity for Indian films are on cards.

Due to various new marketing strategies adopted by the producers of the movie, Ra.One managed to generate a lot of positive word of mouth. If not for its success, this movie would definitely prove to be a landmark in the Indian film industry for its advertising and marketing strategies.

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