And no, I’m not talking about bringing in hundreds of millions of dollars in box office sales, then lounging at the country club, wondering what the poor are doing that day. That sure would be nice though…
Fetch my servant, I need my dinner jacket pressed
Say what you will about Hollywood and their marketing, but they do know how to reach their target audiences. You don’t see photos from a Hollywood “indie” (which is anything but, but that’s another story) slapped on a Slurpee cup and you don’t see a Transformers trailer before a romantic comedy. The big studios focus on demographics that will be interested in certain movies and then focus their marketing on those people.
Now, as real independent productions we simply don’t have the money to market on the scale Hollywood does, but the rise of social media has given us some powerful tools to help grow our movies’ audiences. For example, with The Photon Effect we’re on Facebook, twitter (@Thephotoneffect), imdb, this blog, and video clips on vimeo, youtube, and a tumblr account. We know comic book, sci fi, and superhero flick fans may like our movie so we tag all our postings with those keywords so people will Stumbleupon our stuff. Tomorrow’s brief blog will be a link to a great filmmaking resource I recently discovered, so be sure to check back!
I’m sure more than sure some filmmakers out there might think “wait a minute, when I get my movie into Sundance/Tribeca/Toronto/Cannes a distributor rep will give me a fat check and take care of all that marketing stuff!” I’m sure of this because I thought the same thing. Pump your brakes there bud. One, with the sheer number of indie films being made the odds of getting in are lower and lower each year. Secondly, the only marketing those distributor reps are going to do will involve posting a thumbnail image of your one sheet on their webpage and MAYBE sending out screeners to sales reps. THAT’S IT. How do I know? The distributor rep we were talking to told us that. That was a real punch in the junk. Reading stories from other filmmakers confirmed that this wasn’t in isolated incident.
So don’t wait until the movie is almost ready for distribution like we are. Get out there and get your audience now!