Posts in Indie Film
Game of Thrones: The Art of the Pitch

As a filmmaker and an entrepreneur, I’ve made a lot of pitches. I’ve pitched start-up ideas, apps, screenplays, and myself to a variety of decision-makers. I’ve also taught workshops on how to make an effective pitch. But, it wasn’t until I rewatched the Season Eight finale of HBO’s Game of Thrones that I noticed what turns out to be a near-perfect example of a pitch that makes people literally sit up and take notice.

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Does Your Film Need a Publicist?

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.

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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:

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Using Hashtags for Your Indie Film

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.

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"Bridging the Indie Gap" - Vancouver Int'l Film Festival

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.

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Online Ad Budget Calculator

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!

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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.

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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.

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