The release of the newest trailer for Marvel’s upcoming Black Panther movie had the internet buzzing this week! AYTM decided to find out just how far the excitement over Black Panther reaches, so we surveyed 1,000 American adults (balanced by age and gender) to get some insights into the newest phase of the Marvel craze.
The good news for Marvel is only 32% of the respondents to the AYTM survey do not plan to see Black Panther (as shown in the chart below) in a theater, and half of the people who will see the movie (49%) plan to watch it in a theater on opening night. The bad news for Marvel is that the franchise still doesn’t capture female audiences as much as male audiences.
Black Panther’s Popularity is Increasing
Among the respondents to the AYTM survey, 66% call themselves big fans or slight fans of Marvel. Another 23% don’t call themselves fans, but they don’t dislike Marvel. Only 11% of respondents said they don’t like Marvel at all.
The data is a bit different across genders where 13% of women say they don’t like Marvel at all compared to just 8% of men. In fact, only 61% of women call themselves big fans or slight fans of Marvel versus 71% of men. Women are also less likely to be fans of the Black Panther character (42% of women are not fans vs. 29% of men) and less likely to see the Black Panther movie (37% of women do not plan to see the movie versus 27% of men).
Of those people who call themselves fans of the Black Panther character, most (65%) didn’t become fans until after they saw the character introduced in Captain America Civil War. However, 36% of respondents to AYTM’s survey are not Black Panther fans. When asked who their favorite male Marvel superhero is, the top three were identified as:
- Spider-Man: 22%
- Wolverine: 13%
- Iron Man: 12%
You can see the breakdown in the chart below.
Overall, more men are fans of Marvel and Black Panther than women, and younger people are more likely to be fans than older people. Interestingly, Spider-Man takes the top spot among men and women as the favorite male Marvel superhero.
However, when asked what their favorite Marvel film or film series is their favorite, the following three movies ranked in the top three spots:
- Spider-Man: 13.8%
- Avengers: 12.4%
- Guardians of the Galaxy: 11.3%
When considering their favorite Marvel films and film series, men and women had differing opinions. Women ranked Spider-Man as their favorite series while men chose the Avengers as their favorite.
Furthermore, while Black Panther is gaining in popularity, the movie isn’t the one people are most excited to see from the Marvel franchise. That honor goes to Avengers: Infinity War as shown in the chart below.
Extending the Marvel Brand Beyond Movies
Of course, the Marvel universe extends far beyond movies, so AYTM asked the 1,000 respondents to its survey to share other ways they experience the Marvel brand and the various character brands in the Marvel universe. Respondents were asked if they watch any of the Marvel television series on Netflix. Only 37% of respondents indicated that they watch a Marvel show on Netflix with Daredevil being the most popular (12%).
On the other hand, 54% of respondents experience the brand in other ways. The top three are:
- Playing Marvel video games: 26%
- Buying Marvel collectibles: 21%
- Buying Branded Clothing: 20.8%
You can see the full breakdown in the chart below.
While brand extensions are popular, fewer fans partake in Marvel movie release activities. In total, only 36% of respondents to the AYTM survey indicated that they participate in these types of events. The most popular were buying merchandise at the events (22%), entering contests (16%), playing games (13%), and dressing up in costumes (5.6%).
Riding the Wave of the Marvel Brand’s Success
It’s safe to say that Marvel is successfully monetizing its many brands, and the popularity of the entire Marvel universe doesn’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon. In fact, as the rising interest in the Black Panther character and movie demonstrates, that popularity continues to grow. Will the brand reach a point of saturation? It seems unlikely. In fact, if the brand can penetrate deeper into female audiences (which is certainly possible based on the popularity of DC’s Wonder Woman movie), its growth rate could increase exponentially.