Behind the Success of Kerala’s first OTT Release, Sufiyum Sujathayum

The advent of the Coronavirus pandemic followed by the lockdown has forever changed the due course of all businesses and sectors, with special mention to the movie industry. It has quite dramatically changed the entire process of the film business, at least for the time being. As the theatres are locked down and off limits to the public, there are almost over 50 major films waiting for a theatrical release.

However, at a time like this, small budget films are getting opportunity for a release through various OTT platforms. The film Sufiyum Sujathayum has the distinction of being the first Malayalam film to be ever released on an OTT platform. Our team has been responsible for the promotions of Sufiyum Sujathayum a much expected release on Amazon Prime.

DPC has extensively worked for its client Amazon Prime to promote the successful release of Sufiyum Sujathayum, with coverage of close to 100 stories, both in print and online media. It wasn’t all done in one go; instead an organised communication strategy was designed that was spread out over 50 days amidst the lockdown. A press release each, was sent out right from the first announcement of the premiere of the film, the release date, to the launch of its trailer and the two songs on the pre-designated dates. This was then followed by extensive promotions through TV, radio, social media and print. No other Malayalam film, prior to Sufiyum Sujathayum had received such an extensive, well-constructed promotion especially during a nationwide lockdown.

PR in Malayalam cinema over the years has been following the traditional methods, which is mainly limited to a handful of interviews, an audio launch and a couple of television appearances on reality shows. Compared to other industries, very little is invested in the marketing and PR of a Malayalam film. It’s high time, Malayalam film industry understands the absolute necessity of a good PR strategy for the promotion of a feature film. An organised and dedicated communication strategy is the absolute need of the hour.

A film that is marketed well, gets that much more reach among its appropriate audience and it earns a substantially higher revenue. Malayalam cinema is well known for its universal stories and beautiful making, but it is still behind in terms of business, provided it appreciates and promotes communication strategies and PR drive of a film. Now more than ever before, it is vital for Malayalam cinema to invest in a proper PR strategy which is unique to each film.