How to work with the media, courtesy of the people who know
Does Your Film Need a Publicist?
We’ve already covered why you might want to hire a professional publicist. But what else you need, especially if you are going it alone? How many high res images should you have at the ready? And do you really need that EPK/electronic press kit?!
I asked some members of the media who get pitched ALL THE TIME what they are looking for, and what makes them actually open an email.
AMA HIGHLIGHTS: DIGITAL MARKETING AND SOCIAL TIPS
Planning your film, no matter how thrifty you can be with sets and equipment, is a daunting enterprise. Including a little extra for a publicist before you even begin shooting can seem like a luxury. So why is it worth it? Well, why make a film if no one sees it? A publicist is your best advocate for outreach, press coverage, and generally putting a good face on your project.
Bringing the PR love for our clients
Because social media is an ever-changing landscape, it can be hard to know where to spend your time, effort, and budget in order to get the word out about your project. Earlier this year, I participated in an “Ask Me Anything” marketing forum and answered questions about social media and digital marketing.
Here are some highlights that small biz owners may find useful:
Using Hashtags for Your Indie Film
The Seattle International Comedy Competition (and its sister event, The San Francisco Comedy Competition) is one of my favorite projects to work on. It’s a great showcase for emerging talents, delivers an evening of raucous entertainment to audiences, and is presented by one of the undersung OGs of comedy: Jon Fox.
That’s why it’s so great when we’re able to successfully convey all this to the media and get some awesome coverage. Here’s a round up of this year’s highlights:
Creating the Perfect Movie Poster
There are about 500 million tweets sent each day, which comes out to approximately 200 billion tweets per year. Instagram users post more than 95 million photos and videos per day, or about 34 billion pieces of content per year. Add Snapchat, Facebook, Pinterest, and countless others and you have a lot of noise to cut through in order to get the word out about your indie film. It’s time to get smart about your hashtags.
4 Tips for Building Your Social Audience
Movie posters are works of art. When done right, they can be iconic, collectible, and set the tone for your entire marketing campaign — but their first purpose is to be effective tools for getting people to watch your movie. Here’s what to consider when creating your one-sheet.
"Bridging the Indie Gap" - Vancouver Int'l Film Festival
At this point you probably feel like you’ve heard it ALL when it comes to advice on how to build your brand’s social media audience, but since we do things a little differently at Team Smarthouse, I wanted to share four quick tips that cut through all the “growth-hacking” jargon and “guru wisdom” out there.
Online Ad Budget Calculator
Smarthouse co-founder and principal, Brad Wilke, presented our hybrid film marketing, audience engagement and personal branding workshop, Bridging the Indie Gap, to a full house of filmmakers and industry members at the 2016 Vancouver International Film Festival.
Check out this video of the full 60-minute workshop we've developed to help indie filmmakers leap across what Brad has coined “The Indie Gap” – the divide between filmmaking as a hobby and filmmaking as a sustainable career.
HOW YOUR FILM’S MESSAGE CAN DRIVE DISTRIBUTION SUCCESS
Almost all of our independent film clients have questions about the appropriate size of their respective digital advertising budgets. It’s a tough question mainly because there isn’t a simple, one-size-fits-all answer. Of course, it would be great to have unlimited resources but, as I’m sure many of you reading this already know, that is almost never the case when it comes to independent artists.
And that’s why Smarthouse created our online ad budget calculator tool!
DRIVING ITUNES MOVIE PRE-ORDERS WITH FACEBOOK ADS
You’ve made a documentary and now you’re looking to find your audience. Maybe you’re hoping to partner with an organization that could help you connect with viewers. But where to start?
Luckily, a webinar featuring Caitlin Boyle from Film Sprout and Keith Ochwat from Filmmaker.MBA explained how your film’s message can propel your direct distribution campaign and build a revenue stream.
If you’re serious about making a splash, you need to be serious about your marketing campaign. But, that doesn’t mean you have to spend a fortune on your ads in order to make it work. You do, however, need to be smart about your platforms and your audience targeting.
The following case study will help illustrate, in practical terms, how an independent filmmaker might approach this data-intensive process.