What Ryan Reynolds Taught Me About Marketing

A feeling of nostalgia came over me this week as I heard rumours of the return of Blockbuster video in the London area. Sadly, it was only a two day event specifically designed to promote the the DVD and Blue-ray (yes they still exist!) release of Ryan Reynolds’ action packed film Deadpool 2. If customers showed up with an old Blockbuster card they would receive a limited edition VHS case for the film - otherwise they could act out a superpower and win a free copy of it instead.


Apart from the sentiment I felt for an organization that kept my weekends full of comedic fun; it mostly inspired me remember the hilariousness that is Ryan Reynolds, and how he approaches every marketing channel with one goal. Make it funny.


Recently Ryan was on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon where he took the opportunity to promote his newest venture, Aviation Gin. He also shared that in more recent months, he has used his out-of-office emails as an effective marketing maneuver to create a buzz around the product. After sharing his email address publicly, he prepared multiple responses that left recipients in stitches.

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He then proceeded to receive over 20,000 emails over the course of one day which in turn crashed his servers. His Twitter response to this was classically sarcastic and totally what we’d expect from Mr. Reynolds.

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The gin brand reported that this clever retort peaked the interest of retailers and restaurants alike who all have the potential to carry the product. #marketingwin

But this isn’t the first we’ve seen of Ryan’s genius marketing flair. He has kept his Twitter audiences entertained through the years via comical tweets poking fun at everything from gluten to his own daughter.

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This is a prime example of using a social platform to show off personality and promote engagement. Truly one of my favs on Twitter and a great example of using social in an effective way that gets people talking.

Marketing efforts for the first Deadpool movie were hugely effective and part of that involved Reynolds’ personality. We weren’t sure where Reynolds started and Deadpool ended and the audiences seemed to eat it up!

Through a ton of campaigns including a risque photoshoot resembling Burt Reynolds’ famous nude spread in Cosmopolitan, a Deadpool beauty pageant hosted by Reynolds himself or an email newsletter sent out to the Deadpool email list as part of the ‘Twelve Days of Deadpool.’; this movie was all anyone could talk about.

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Video was also a huge part of the marketing plan - a variety of videos and trailers were made all with a different theme and approach to the movie keeping one thing constant throughout.

They were all bloody hilarious!

Comedy was the main focus around every part of Deadpool’s marketing rollout - not exactly what you’d expect given that it’s a superhero movie right? That’s the pure genius behind this entire campaign.  

But as crazy as it might sound to massage Conan O’Brien, elicit a war with Wolverine and advertise on a giant billboard with a poop emoji; Deadpool aka Ryan Reynolds clearly knows how to make an impact.

Despite the context, Ryan seems to take every opportunity and make it somehow ok to laugh.This type of comedic, no holds barred marketing can stand to be used in many more campaigns and by many more companies.

Keep us laughing Ryan, keep us laughing.