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EMAC 2019 Annual Conference

Entertainment Science, Episode 2: The Movies!

Published: May 28, 2019


Mark Houston, Texas Christian University; Thorsten Hennig-Thurau, University of Münster


This special session will contribute to a richer understanding of Entertainment Science by exploring the “rules” that affect the appeal of creative and cultural offerings for consumers and other stakeholders and decide whether an entertainment product becomes a huge hit or will be instantly forgotten. Together with Entertainment Science, Episode One:

Music & Art & Trash, this session is part of a two-episode scholarly mini series that extends and refines Hennig-Thurau and Houston’s “Entertainment Science” theory (Springer Nature, 2019).

This episode features four papers that investigate different facets of movies, as the focal products of Entertainment Science. The paper by Raoul V. Kübler and Koen Pauwels, titled “Super Hero or Super-Saturation

- Movie product placement and advertising sales effects”, investigates how product placements in movies interact with traditional advertising campaigns, finding evidence for a negative effect arising from a combination of both.

The second paper of the session, co-authored by Rouven Seifert, Michel Clement, Alexa Burmester, Thorsten Hennig-Thurau, and Marco Caliendo and entitled “The Direct and Indirect Effects of Cultural Subsidies on Market Performance”, uses a non-linear recursive system of equations to study the effects of cultural production and marketing subsidies on the quality of and demand for motion pictures in Germany. The authors find no effect of production subsidies on product quality as well as no signaling effect of production and marketing subsidies, but a strong mediation effect of financial support on demand through pre-release advertising.

The third paper of the session, “Understanding the causal link between pre-release consumer buzz on product adoption”, by Ricarda Schauerte, Thorsten Hennig-Thurau, and Ann-Kristin Kupfer, builds on the role of pre-release consumer buzz as a key marketing metric in many entertainment markets and sheds light on whether, and how, such buzz actually causes (versus simply “predicting”) individual adoption behavior.

The fourth and final paper in the session is by Lachlan Deer, Pradeep K.

Chintagunta, and Gregory S. Crawford and carries the title “The impact of Twitter on new product performance”.  The authors analyze how the volume of posts on Twitter and sentiment expressed within them during a movie’s pre- and post-release phase impacts consumer demand for new release movies.