Market Your Film Using Social Media: 4 Helpful Tips Every Filmmaker Should Know

Posted: April 7, 2011 in Week #11

1. “If you want to do social media you need to engage your target audience and treat them intelligently.”

“Every movie or TV project has a core audience, and the Internet is the most strategic way to get to those people. This allows you to do the EPK [electronic press kit] and other advertising much later. The concept is ‘Production is the new Promotion,’ and the sooner you engage your audience the sooner they are going to grab onto it, and follow the different phases to the point where you get to your last news release or airing. There will be much more information that surfaces to the top of Google than there would be in putting out a short release over six weeks.” [two quotes from Movies, Writers, and Producers article: Social media adds powerful punch to movie marketing campaigns experts reveal]

“Social media and the new online landscape are changing the way screen content is marketed and word is spread. There’s an obvious opportunity for independent filmmakers and small distributors, since these platforms are more affordable, by and large, than traditional, “old media”, especially if you stumble upon the holy grail of online marketing: the appropriation of your messages by the audience.” [source]

2. Here are a few notes towards a social media toolbox, which may be relevant to filmmakers:

  • Build a fan base during production
  • Use Twitter to spread the word
  • Involve online communities in the design
  • Find celebrity endorsements
  • Stream the film to journalists
  • Cheap awards campaign
  • Ask for fan-generated screening requests [source]

3. There are lots of media platforms and thousands of social media websites [to use for marketing your film]:

  1. Wikipedia.org: Signup for Wikipedia.org and write about your movie summary and provide the casting members and the information about the production company of the movie. If you have external links than place a reputed link which provides more details about your movie. Update your wikipedia.org page with the time by time as new activities and events happens with your film team and members. To have listed your website on wikipedia.org will itself provide a good amount of traffic.
  2. YouTube.com: Submit trailer of your movie in YouTube and optimize the video in better manner as it rank in top of the results for the related category in videos this will definitely helps you to drive decent amount of traffic towards your website.
  3. MySpace.Com: Having a account and connected with friends from the relevant industry in Myspace.com will help you to make good discussions about your upcoming movie and what I think it will be the best way to generate a successful buzz about your movie in online media. Always be consistent and keep the details updated.
  4. Facebook.com: Facebook.com works and helps in the similar manner what does myspace.com does for your website. Facebook.com will helpful to generate good buzz about your movie in outside US as in US still myspace.com holds the big market.
  5. Twitter.com: The great format of blogging which is defined as micro blog where you can express what are you doing. Still you must need a perfection to provide events and activities wisely which generates really hot topics discussions. Don’t over twitting.
  6. IMDB.com: List your Movie site in IMDB.com and see the difference. However it provides paid inclusion services but the most reliable source to get excellent movie targeted traffic.
  7. Rotten Tomattos: The best movie forum available on the web to produce generous discussion about every thing about your movie. Place review of your website and stay connected all the time with the members gently and promote your website in the Rotten Tomattos Forum.
  8. Commonsensemedia.org: A very good website to submit your upcoming movie reviews.
  9. Bebo.com: Nice social networking websites which help you to interact with the people you are interested. And finally,
  10. Your Website official Blog: Your Movie Blog is the best place to produce latest events and activities buzz about your movie. You must be consistent in blogging and write about the every one who is associated with the movie. Don’t write to promote your film only but keep your blog for your readers and let them read some interesting news and information around the film industry in which they are mostly interested. [source]

4. Plant your [social media] marketing seeds [early]…

“Plant your marketing and distribution seeds at pre-production / production stage. Think about your audience in advance of making your film and think about your title carefully from a marketing point of view too. Do a little research to see if the title has been used recently and might cause confusion with another film currently in the market.”

“Buy up all related and possibly desired urls and start on the site, draw in traffic and collect names and contact info.  Make sure your set photography is top-notch from a marketing and publicity point-of-view. Start building community around your brand as a filmmaker and the film itself, and possibly even sharing parts of the content with your future audience.” [two quotes from Shari Candler Marketing and Publicity‘s, TFC Tidbit of the Day 26-Planting your marketing seeds]

Billy’s analysis:

As an aspiring filmmaker looking to the web for guidance, one has to fully grasp the power that social media can bring to film marketing. Just as we see the emergence of “citizen journalists,” the same is true for “citizen filmmakers.” Everyone with a smartphone or a flip camera has the capacity to shoot a low-budget film, and with the help of YouTube, that film can go viral in a matter of minutes. So just think what can be done with an actual marketing campaign budget. With the help of social media, a film can be popular before the first piece of film stock has been loaded into the camera, and by the film’s release date, it is literally buzzing with word-of-mouth praise.

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Comments
  1. Sound theory, Billy. This is a solid marketing approach, esp. given the effort/transactional expenses typically generated in these channels. Can off-the-shelf meme’s be effective in a film’s pre-release viral campaign, or would they be dependent on content (resulting in increased costs)?

  2. BTW, code looks great, dude!

  3. breannadrew says:

    Great run down of a complex topic. Your curation of this topic is easy to read and takes great points from a multitude of sources to give us the essentials of this topic. Thanks.

  4. You should check out Podomatic.com It’s a good place to stay connected with audio media. Great blog! I learned a lot of new sites I’ve never even heard of before like that Bebo one.

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