Small Consolation: Sony Social Sites Skyrocket After Film Leaks

Days after five of its films leaked online, Sony has seen a huge spike in followers of its main Facebook page and in viewers of trailers to some of the leaked films, says social-media consultancy RelishMix.

It doubtless is small consolation for Sony executives after the five films – including Oscar hopefuls Fury, Annie, Still Alice and Mr. Turner – ended up on file-sharing sites last week. But all the noise over the leaks also seems to have propelled considerable interest in Sony’s movies on its own official social-media outlets, says Marc Karzen, RelishMix’s CEO.

Among the data points Karzen noted:

  • Sony’s official Facebook page jumped a whopping 1.6 million likes on Thanksgiving Day. Normally, Karzen said, Sony’s Page adds about 900 likes a day.
  • The top trailer for the Annie remake starring Jamie Foxx and Quvenzhane Wallis nearly doubled its daily views, going from 18,000 a day to 35,000. Views of the Annie video trailers as a whole also have nearly doubled from 65,000 to 120,000 the past three days.
  • The top trailer for Furythe only of the five films that already has been released, tripled its views on one YouTube site, JoBloMovies. Karzen called that kind of jump, for a film that’s been in theaters since mid-October, particularly unusual.
  • The top Fury trailer on Sony’s YouTube channel also jumped, though not as much, going from 12,000 views a day to 20,000 (still a 67 percent jump)
  • Fury’s official Facebook page nearly doubled, from 1,200 likes a day to 2,200. Clearly, Karzen said, “people are taking a fresh look” at the David Ayer-directed WWII tank drama starring Brad Pitt and Shia LaBeouf.
Big Facebook follower spikes normally are the result of two or more big pages being merged, Karzen said. Not this time.
“But the views for (another upcoming Sony film) The Interview and Annie are high, and the cross posting is well timed as Sony’s Facebook Page is now at 15.6 million likes,” Karzen said. “I don’t think people are looking for downloads, but they are looking at Sony’s pictures on social.”
That said, he added, solicitations on YouTube for pirated versions of Fury also have skyrocketed in the past three days. It turns out there’s also a gray cloud for every silver lining.

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