Tag: @Jon_Reiss

TOTBO Tip of the Day 18 Don’t Despair

Posted on by Emy

Since sales reps generally work on commission, they will be choosier about the films that they select. Hence more and more films will end up not being represented by a sales rep or will not have a sales rep for each right. So don’t despair if you don’t have one. If a sales rep is helping you obtain and negotiate split rights deals, they are helpful, but you can function without them. If a sales rep requests a large up front fee to represent your film, I strongly recommend doing your research before paying large up front fees to a representative. You must talk to filmmakers the rep has worked with to make sure that it was worth it.

Join me in Cannes on May 15th at the Producer’s Network Breakfast at 9am and on May 16th where Liz Rosenthal and I will be doing a presentation at the Short Film Corner from 4pm to 5pm. Check out my blog, for more information. Follow me @Jon_Reiss on twitter, or on the TOTBO Facebook page. Check out the book and workshops here. I look forward to hearing from you.

TOTBO Tip of the Day 8 Engage Organizations to Promote Your Film

Posted on by Emy

Step 2 of Audience Engagement is: Know WHERE your audience derives information/congregates.

Many niche’s have organizations that support those specific topics and interests. Engage those organizations early in your filmmaking process (as early as conception and prep). It is important to have the proper attitude toward your audience and these organizations. You need to think, “What can I give them?” instead of “What can they do for me?” If you think of the former, the latter will flow. People are very busy. You need to give them an incentive to be involved with you. The film is not enough. How will the film service their organization, their lives and the lives of their members? In turn, they will help you promote your film to your direct audience. This has been used by great effect by documentary filmmakers. Narrative filmmakers need to follow their lead.

My live workshops are coming to London on May 8th-9th and Amsterdam on May 12th-13th. Hope to see you there!

I want to know what you think! Comment here or on my blog, or @Jon_Reiss on twitter, or on the TOTBO Facebook page. Check out the book Think Outside the Box Office. I look forward to hearing from you.

TOTBO Tip of the Day 4 Setting Marketing Strategy

Jon Reiss TOTBO Tip of the Day 4 Setting Marketing Strategy

Two helpful ways to think about marketing: 1) Reaching the audience that already exists for your film and 2) thinking creatively of what audiences might be interested in your film. I recommend that you consider and conceive of a marketing strategy for your film early in the production process, even at inception. Who is its audience? How are you best going to reach them? Are there particular blogs, organizations, print media that they subscribe to? Who will you bring on to help you outreach to your audience? How does this audience consume media? Answering these questions will help to fashion your release strategy.

I want to know what you think! Comment here or on my blog, or @Jon_Reiss on twitter, or on the TOTBO Facebook page. Check out the book here. I look forward to hearing from you.

@Jon_Reiss Marketing Art – An Oxymoron?

Today’s discussions began with the question of why is it important to identify your audience before you finish your film. I believe there are a number of reasons, but the main ones are:

1. Takes a long time to develop your audience.

2. You can engage your audience to participate in the film process itself.

3. The audience engagement/marketing becomes a more integral part of the film.

It can even take you a while to figure out who your core and niche audiences are.

A number of comments brought up the essential issue of art vs. commerce – if you start marketing to your audience so early in the process, then you have the risk of solely catering to your audience which is contradictory to the creation of art.

I can hear Ted Hope protesting now! Ted especially has vocal in denouncing the old art v commerce divide.

Some of the best art is created without a mind to the marketplace. I get that. Chasing the market often leads to creating banal work. But that thinking is too simplistic now for the supple nature of the market in which many tastes and interests can be served.

Filmmakers have to get beyond that old art v. commerce divide and understand this:

Marketing is what helps you find the audience that already exists for your creation. You don’t need to limit your creativity in order to create a marketing strategy. You need to consider who is interested in your specific creativity. This is your niche (or niches). Your core are the most ardent followers within these niches.

So when asked does the writer, director or producer need to consider the marketplace, I would say most definately the director and producer and in many circumstances – it isn’t terrible for writer’s to think about it as well.

Not to think of how you can write the next “Transformers”, but to think creatively about writing material that mind create new opportunities and new models for discovery in today’s fractured marketplace.

This blog is the first in a series that expand on discussion threads on twitter @Jon_Reiss

Ask @Jon_Reiss a twitter/blog interface experiment

Last week I started posting questions and ideas/tips onto my twitter account @Jon_Reiss about film distribution and marketing. I started getting replies and questions back which was excellent! and I tried as best I could to answer them all in my alloted 140 characters. However, the 140 limit prevented me from responding properly in many cases. So I have decided to write a longer post that addresses most if not all of the topical queries that have arisen on @Jon_Reiss (and facebook.com/thinkoutsidetheboxoffice) during the day (or past few days). If you have a specific question about film distribution and marketing you can also ask that @Jon_Reiss and I will be choosing select questions to answer in blog responses. So join me at twitter and check it out. twitter.com/Jon_Reiss