- January 18, 2022
Yet Another Stunning Promotional Opportunity That NASA Ignores
NASA misses a chance to promote the best-ever ad for the space station, Ars Technica
“Why doesn’t NASA promote the film more? It’s impossible to come away from A Beautiful Planet without being impressed by the orbiting laboratory and the international collaboration that constructed it. But where is the audience? My home is Houston – Space City – where astronauts live and the space station program is managed. But when the movie played here, it did so in one theater, on one screen, for a single week. When I attended, just a few astronauts and their friends and families were in the audience. As of last Sunday, A Beautiful Planet had grossed less than $1 million in box office sales across the country.”
Keith’s note: NASA never even bothered to issue a media advisory here in Washington. NASM did not send out one either. The plan apparently seems to be that word of mouth is the preferred mode of advertising. That said, the film did cost NASA money. Camera upmass, crew time, etc. When you calculate cost per hour of crew time, upmass, downmass, etc. it is not insignificant. You’d think that someone would be mounting a much more intense PR campaign – especially one that enlisted NASA. As best I can tell they had invitation-only premiere parties with lots of blue-suited astronauts (pictures) a few hand-picked media – and that’s it. This webpage for A Beautiful Planet has a CASIS logo at the bottom. But there is zero mention of this film on the CASIS website. Nor did CASIS even bother to issue any media advisories or press release. I used to be baffled by this indifference on the part of NASA when it came to things that were clearly worth promoting only to see them do little – or nothing. Now I’m used to seeing missed opportunities for NASA to be relevant and explanatory in terms of public events happening once a week. As for CASIS – they are just clueless – and always have been. So no surprise there.