DO’S AND DON’TS OF FILM MARKETING

FREE GUIDE: INDIE FILM MARKETING 101

WHAT EVERY INDIE FILMMAKER SHOULD KNOW BEFORE LAUNCHING A FILM!

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Film marketing is quite a complex matter, and there are tons of things you need to take into account before and after launching your film or show.
But if we were to pick the top 5 do’s and don’ts of indie film marketing, here are the ones I’d recommend to pay attention to.

 

DO’S OF INDIE FILM MARKETING

  1. Secure a marketing budget. – Allocating some money for marketing in your overall budget, not only will allow you to properly execute and effective campaign, but it’ll also show your potential investors that you’re crystal clear about the business side.
  2. Have your movie pitch ready since day 1. – If you’re presented with one of those life-changing opportunities to pitch your film to someone relevant, make sure you can nail it. Prepare it ahead, keep it short and rehearse it multiple times. Showing confidence in yourself and your project is your best bet to entice your audience.
  3. Generate content throughout the entire production process. – Marketing assets aren’t just ads, posters or trailers. It’s also everything that helps promote your work, and that includes organic content that can be created during every stage of your production process and even later on.
  4. Focus on building an audience over time. – Your audience are your consumers. And you need to have recurrent customers. People interested not only in what you’re doing now, but also what you might be doing in the future. Grow and capture your audience through social media, e-mails lists and any other resource that’ll allow you to get in touch.
  5. Measure results as much as you can. – Did you launch two versions of trailers? Do you know which one performed better? Measuring any action you take will help you improve over time and make sure your marketing efforts are as effective as possible.

DON’TS OF INDIE FILM MARKETING

  1. Don’t rely on your marketing budget to cover production issues. – Your marketing budget is to be used for marketing purposes. Not because you planned poorly and needed some money for a few extra shoot days. You control your budget. Don’t let your budget control you.
  2. Don’t wait till your movie is ready, to plan how to market it. – When you don’t plan ahead, you run the risk of not having any money left for marketing. Or even worse, finding out it’s not marketable. Then you’ll be scrambling to find resources to do a half-assed job. And you’ll finally wonder why it flopped.
  3. Don’t create independent websites or social media pages for every movie or show. – Think about your future projects. Build a marketing platform that’ll help not only this film, but anything else you might do later on. A production company’s website should dedicate landing pages for separate projects, building on top of each other, over time. Same applies for a director’s site. For social media, make sure you have a page you’ll continue to use, versus a film page that will die a slow an agonizing death after the hype is gone.
  4. Don’t assume that word-of-mouth and some casual PR will bring all the audience you need. – Yes, you might think your movie is great and people won’t stop talking about it. But even in this best-case scenario, you’ll need to amplify your reach and make sure you drive traffic to your film or show.
  5. Don’t take one person’s opinion as an absolute truth. – Everyone has an opinion about how to make your film better. Change this scene, shorten this trailer, make your poster more colorful… In film marketing (and advertising in general) there are some best-practices that can guide you about proven methods to get better results. Other than that, there are many instances where a survey or focus group might be useful. On this digital age, it’s fairly easy -and affordable- to run a quick test.

From now on, it’s up to you to follow these tips. Let’s consider them the barebones to what can be a very promising marketing campaign. Good luck!