From Search to Cinematic Success: Maximizing Returns with Strategic Pay-per-click Advertising

The Boxoffice Company
4 min readNov 17


Navigating PPC Advertising for Movie Theaters

As a movie theater owner, you know that providing an unforgettable cinematic experience to your patrons is a top priority. It’s the heart of your business. Nowadays, patrons first come into contact with your cinema online, whether that means searching for your showtimes on platforms like Google and TikTok, purchasing tickets, or even gift cards directly from your theater.

But the world of pay-per-click (PPC) advertising can feel like a daunting puzzle, especially when attempting to manage it on your own. That’s where finding the right partner comes in. Our team has worked with exhibitors of all sizes far and wide to help them write their own advertising success story.

Maximizing Film Promotion

Showcase Cinemas partnered with our team to promote two films, “Barbie” and “Oppenheimer” across more than 20 locations. In a two-fold approach, we helped them achieve a jaw-dropping return on investment (ROI) of 14:1. The key to the campaign’s success was in the relationship between search ads and display advertising. The search ads helped to put Showcase in the top positions for keywords it was not ranking for organically, meaning it could attract a new audience while ensuring its existing customers were not buying through third-party vendors or competitors. The display remarketing ads helped cut through competition with branded assets that deliver a memorable message, meaning that, even when a customer didn’t purchase their ticket straight after the initial click, Showcase’s marketing message continued to be seen by their intended audience, leading to conversions hours, days or even weeks later.

Strategic Keyword Selection and Enhanced Visual Ads

The key component is relevance. By meticulously selecting keywords that perfectly align with the movies you are promoting, we maximize your campaign’s impact. Given that the campaign had a limited budget, we optimized spending by excluding branded search terms to ensure Showcase Cinemas was being found for search terms it already ranked highly for in organic search. And while keywords are important, they certainly aren’t everything. Customers come to your theater for an experience. We help you excite the senses by creating visually appealing display ads featured with clear calls-to-actions to boost click and conversions. Showcase’s campaigns drove a whopping 114,000 impressions, 11,000 clicks, and an impressive combined ROI of over 14:1. It excelled at optimizing for high-performing search terms like “barbie showtimes” and “oppenheimer tickets.”

Targeted PPC Strategies for Cinemas’ Additional Offerings

For cinemas that sell more than movie tickets, PPC advertising can have even more to offer. Whether it’s a dine-in experience, group sales, ax throwing, or holiday promotion, highlighting your theater’s offerings is what will set you apart from your competitors. We also worked with Showcase Cinemas on an area of major untapped advertising potential: private theater rentals.

We helped drive leads with comprehensive keyword research, resulting in uniquely themed ad groups like rent a theater, birthday party venues, and even competitors. To maximize the potential customer base, we incorporated geo-targeting to ensure ads were seen only by people within a certain radius of each Showcase Cinema location and thoroughly crafted ad copy to present a clear call-to-action, with a prominent focus on the competitive price point of $99.

By constantly fine-tuning, eliminating underperforming keywords, experimenting with new bidding strategies, and testing those bidding strategies against one another, the campaign generated 250–400 lead form submissions each month, boasting an average conversion rate of 30%. With a conservative ROI estimate of 15:1, a well-executed digital advertising can drive both awareness and substantial returns to their business. If you’re curious to learn more about how PPC can do that for your theater

Starting Your Cinema PPC Journey

Partnering up with Boxoffice means taking the mystery, intimidation, and hassle out of paid advertising. If you’d like to learn more about how PPC advertising can increase awareness, boost ticket sales, and even locate areas of untapped potential for your theater then reach out to our team. We’ll help you craft a tailored ad strategy to yield exceptional results that aligns perfectly with your cinema’s aspirations to help it thrive in the digital age.



The Boxoffice Company

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