How A24's New Merch-Centric Membership Program Appeals to Fans
A24 has built a nice little community of cinephiles for itself. How many other film distribution companies do you know off the top of your head, let alone that you'd buy a piece of merchandise from?
Not only does A24 seem to have the innate ability to pick movies that resonate within the cultural zeitgeist, but it also does some pretty genius merchandise tie-ins beyond standard T-shirts or posters. It chooses items that represent a specific part of a movie or a vital part of its theme, and make a more memorable promotional item as a result.
For movie fans who have drunk the A24 Kool-Aid, there's now a special membership program that gets them access to special products and other perks. These sorts of branded membership programs aren't new, exactly—think subscription boxes for things like Marvel or Star Wars.
But, of course, this one has that particular A24 spin on it. And, thanks to Fast Company's Joe Berkowitz, we got a look at the exclusive branding experience without actually having to sign up.
Membership is now open. https://t.co/dUfeKjviv8
— A24 (@A24) April 26, 2022
Here's the meat of what you'd get if you sign up for A24 All Access (or "AAA24" for short) for $5 a month:
- Subscription to the A24 print zine
- A special birthday gift (which appears to be a choice of various items from the A24 merch store)
- "Close Friends" access on Instagram for sneak peeks and news releases
- Exclusive members-only merchandise
- A branded membership pin and membership card
- Early access to non-exclusive merchandise
- Discounts to the shop
During Berkowitz's six weeks as an AAA24 member, he has the chance to receive his special birthday gift. He had the choice between a diamond grading chart from "Uncut Gems," a postcard set from "Minari," or a pair of mesh gym shorts with the A24 logo on the side.
Based on his scrolling of the A24 Reddit community, the birthday present choices rotate, so what is up for grabs in May might not be available to June birthdays.
Without taking too much time to go through every single item in the A24 e-commerce platform (we've done that plenty already), we can at least say that this is a promotional campaign that works wonders if you've built up a strong enough audience with interest in just about every product you put out. This wouldn't necessarily work for a startup company that no one knows just yet. But, once you have a rabid enough fanbase who want first dibs on a "Hereditary" T-shirt, then you will see plenty of $5 memberships come sailing in.
Join the Yeohverse 📌https://t.co/HmMDBrQaP4
— A24 (@A24) June 7, 2022
From an actual design standpoint, too, this is really neat. It creates a community, which is better than just creating exclusivity for the sake of hype, like the Supremes of the world. Fans don't just feel like they're around to buy things. They get news about upcoming movies first, so they feel like they're in on something and, therefore, more likely to buy something from the store. And they'll feel more pride in their membership pin and flaunt the logo around town as a proud club member, not just a consumer.
As a company that does exist to make money, it's tough to walk that line between genuine fan interaction with promotional products and just trying to get people to buy something. This does an almost impossibly great job of this, as A24 has been doing for years.
Even if your clients are nowhere near the media or film industry, A24 is a good role model when it comes to showing your end-users respect and finding creative new ways to market your products.