by Alexander MacMillan Whiteway



Project Description

Client : DC Comics / DC Films

Location : Burbank, CA, USA

Target : DC Comic Super Fans / Superhero Movie / TV Series Fans

Brief:  CEO of Warner Brothers Kevin Tsujihara has had enough with the opinions on how DC could move forward and continue competing with Marvel, he wanted the facts. How should the universe be structured to compete? Should DC stick with their more serious, aesthetically dark look, or go more light-hearted and/or comical, as Marvel has? How did Wonder Woman succeed, was it because it empowered the fan base? Kevin wanted to know what a comic nerd thought the difference was between a Marvel superhero and a DC superhero, and if there are any DC-specific themes these comic super look for? Is superhero fatigue a thing? Will people get tired of superhero movies in the near future? Which brands should DC partner with? How is Marvel using TV differently than movies? (tonal difference)How should DC approach TV? Should DC focus more on non-white, male superheroes? How can DC make DC superhero fans into DC brand fans How has frequent rebranding damaged their brand equity?

Opportunity:  Overall, there needed to be a radical simplification of the universe - and a focus on what really matters to the fans of traditional comics, movies, and T.V.

Problem:  How can DC compete with Marvel?

Solution: Change the perspective from focusing on competition, to focusing on relatable characters individually, developed through good storytelling. 



I channeled the idea of contacting the local comic book stores to find our "Super Fan" group to take a survey we sent out through their facebook pages. We ended up receiving feedback from over 200 people about how they thought DC should move forward in order to keep up with Marvel. I analyzed our data and came to the realization that super fans wanted individual characters and great storytelling, bottom line. From there, I collaborated with the team to bring together all of our data from the rest of the questions we asked in our survey to create a strategy for DC moving forward. 


Sally Zhang ( CBM )

Mark Gozzo ( CBM )

Louise Guy ( CBM )

Paul Atienza ( CBM )

Alexander M. Whiteway ( CBM )