Campaign we loved in July: Barbie

barbie movie logo on blue background

We’re continuing our monthly blog series of campaigns that we loved at Midas.

In the dynamic world of filmmaking, the success of a film extends beyond its on-screen brilliance to encompass an equally compelling digital marketing campaign. Unless you’ve been living within the confines of a plastic toy box, you will undoubtedly have heard or even seen one particular film coveting the world in its bright pink storm – Barbie.

The live-action 2023 film Barbie was theatrically released on July 21st 2023 by Warner Bros. Pictures, and made the highest-grossing debut of 2023. It was the top contributor to the fourth-largest weekend at the box office in the U.S. of all time. In advance of its long-awaited screening, Mattel, Barbie’s inventor, pulled out all the stops to give the world a marketing masterclass that left us all smiling.


Mattel knew the deal – social media is where it’s at! Barbie took over Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok where the fans became the stars, as Mattel encouraged us to unleash our creativity by sharing personal Barbie stories and recreating iconic scenes.


Barbie wanted to get to know us too. Quizzes and polls told us which Barbie we were most like, and interactive filters let us strut in Barbie’s chic outfits. The resulting UGC not only served as free promotion but also solidified the emotional bond between fans and the brand. By encouraging user participation, the campaign facilitated a sense of involvement and anticipation among fans. Talk about feeling like a part of the action!

According to Clearpay, the resultant ‘Barbiecore’ trend has driven a surge in sales for denim clothes, with a 36% increase, jumpsuits with a 19% increase, leotards with a 12% increase, and crop tops with a 9% increase. Additionally, fuchsia clothing sales rose by 44% since the last quarter, while coral clothing saw a 32% increase, pink had a 10% rise, and magenta skyrocketed by 71% compared to last year.


In addition to its fan-tastic social media coverage, with $150 million spent on marketing, the world was painted pink with billboards, trendy posters using Barbie’s iconic logo font, a real-life Barbie Dreamhouse bookable through Airbnb in Malibu, and lots and lots of pink takeovers. In London, for the premiere, this included: pink London buses, pink taxies, a pink Doctor Who Tardis next to Tower Bridge, the London Eye lit up in pink, and the renaming of Barbican tube station as Barbiecan.

Barbie’s marketing team made everything so seamless and connected that no matter where you looked – on social media, official websites or in your local city or town – it was a total Barbie wonderland. We got to explore characters, secrets, and exclusive content, making us crave the movie even more, not to mention the hundreds of licensing tie-ins with shoe brands and video game consoles, adding to the hype.


The digital marketing campaign of Barbie (2023) serves as a masterclass in captivating audiences and setting new industry standards. Mattel’s strategic use of social media, influencer collaborations, personalised content, user-generated contributions, seamless cross-platform integration, and data-driven decision making converged to create an immersive and electrifying experience for fans. The triumph of Barbie demonstrates that in the digital age, a compelling and well-executed marketing campaign can be just as instrumental in a movie’s success as its on-screen brilliance.

P.S. Kudos to Barbie and her team for nailing the digital marketing game and making us all part of the pink-tastic Barbie adventure, although we do appear to be running out of pink paint!