This year TRUE 212 gave Picturehouse Recommends a bold, brand new look. We check in with Sam Clements, Head of Marketing at Picturehouse Cinemas, to find out how the refresh work on the quarterly print magazine has been received by customers and colleagues alike.
Picturehouse Recommends was launched over ten years ago. What’s the history behind its programming and how does the magazine support this?
Initially, we launched the magazine as a way for us to talk in more detail to our customers about the films we love. We offer a curated program put together by a team of experts with their heads very much screwed on. They carefully select the best films for our audiences and it’s important that our marketing strategy does them justice.
TRUE 212 stepped up to the mark to jazz things up a bit, creating a professional magazine that people want to pick up and keep
Showing an advert wasn’t enough. We wanted to make the most of print to talk to our customers and get them excited with detailed, engaging content. For over ten years, Picturehouse Recommends magazine has been instrumental in connecting our customers with brilliant cinema. And because it’s quarterly, it’s often the first thing the customer reads on a particular film. TRUE 212 stepped in six years ago and last year approached us with the idea for a magazine rebrand. It came at the perfect time because it coincided nicely with Picturehouse as a company also wanting to refresh its look and feel
Pick up our brand new Picturehouse Recommends magazine for the love of cinema!
— Picturehouse Central (@CentralPictureH) November 6, 2018
What factors that led to the new format, design, and content for Picturehouse Recommends?
Before the rebrand, the magazine was looking a little bit outdated. We were worried that people might not get to some of the great content inside because the design wouldn’t grip them. Luckily, TRUE 212 stepped up to the mark to jazz things up a bit, creating a professional magazine that people want to pick up and keep.
The new style of the magazine and our new logo make sure our marketing feels current and on trend
A lot of research regarding our current contemporaries and high-end publications took place in the hope that we could bring some fresh ideas to the new-look magazine. Not only did we want the content to be great, but we wanted it to look very inviting, aspirational and like a luxury publication – going to the cinema is a luxury after all!
Picturehouse has just relaunched their logo and brand. How does the renewed magazine fit into this brand communication strategy?
Yes, we had a logo that we had been using for about 30 years since we launched in 1989 and it’s kind of unheard of really for a company to keep a logo for such a long period of time. So it was fortuitous really that TRUE 212 came to us with the suggestion of refreshing things. We had a date when we wanted to launch our new logo and it fitted in with the print schedule of the magazine and we successfully hit our deadline. Now, the new style of the magazine and our new logo make sure our marketing feels current and on trend.
What has the feedback been like?
It’s hard to measure success in print but we’ve run out of magazines in most of our cinemas now. People have clearly not only been reading it but they’ve been taking it away with them too! That’s the goal: we want people to carry the magazine around with them and refer to it as their cinema bible, so to speak.
We’ve not only had a great response from our customers, but our colleagues in the film industry have been very positive. We have a number of film distributors, film writers, people we have worked with in various B2B relationships all get in touch to say they love the look of the new magazine and that’s great to hear from the people we work with on a day-to-day basis.
How is 2019 shaping up for film releases and the ambitions of Picturehouse overall?
2019 is looking to be a very exciting year – almost too exciting. This is a huge year for cinema so there’s a load of amazing films coming out. We’re in the middle of the Oscars season now with films like The Favourite. It’s an amazing start to the year. We have a lot of big blockbuster movies on the horizon: Avengers: Infinity War, Captin Marvel, the Toy Story sequel, a new version of Aladin, The Lion King and Dumbo, the new Star Wars and the sequel to Frozen.
It’s a huge year for blockbusters which is fantastic, but that’s only part of what we play at Picturehouse. We’re about to get into the festival season with Sundance and the Berlin Film Festival and our programming team are on the lookout for what are going to be the big festival smashers this year. We’re at a really exciting time, it’s a really exciting year ahead and we’re looking forward to producing more great magazines going forward.
Find out more about our work on Picturehouse Recommends.