It’s already Fall 2021 (how did that happen?!), and you've just finished your independent film. Now, you're wondering how to promote it. The pandemic has changed the film industry in many ways but one thing that has remained consistent is that the success of a film will depend on its publicity and marketing across the digital landscape. If you use the proper film promotion methods and take action (because no one is going to do it for you, no matter what they promise) get your film out there, you're likely to find much more success for your work, make more sales, earn revenue, and gain the momentum you need to make your next project a reality!!In this guide, we’ll help you understand the best film marketing strategies, discuss the tips to get you on the path to success, and why promoting your film is crucial. So let’s begin with the basics.
What is film marketing?
Film marketing is a necessary and arguably one of the most critical phases of the filmmaking process. Embrace the ‘necessary evil’, because without it all the time, money, and effort you’ve invested in making the film could be considered obsolete if there’s no audience to watch it. This is all about finding creative ideas and compos to best represent your story and making the right audience aware of it. There are various ways to measure your film’s success and different ways to leverage a successful film marketing campaign. Instead of getting into the specific KPIs, let’s begin with the most essential tactics to generate awareness, engagement, and activation with your audience.
5 ways to promote your independent film
There are many ways to get your independent film to the intended audience. The following are some of the proven ways to take your film’s awareness to the next level.
1. Host Your Film & Drive TrafficHaving a film website makes it easy for people to find the information they need about your film and book tickets or showtimes. This is the central hub for all things (your film) from which to capture and leverage interested audiences. This can be simple and straightforward in approach, easily a DIY approach. We often default to a single-scroll landing page with detailed information about your film, cast and crew, behind the scenes and of course your film's trailer. You should also add links to view it, including links for live streaming or local theaters where people can watch it. If you want to develop further from that, adding clickable social icons, press, cast and crew bios, and more can make your page well rounded and engaging.
2. Post on Social MediaMore than 70% of adults globally use social media. Posting your film's pictures, behind the scenes content, videos and updates frequently help you to reach many people in a short time. Facebook and Instagram are the most common platforms to leverage when making your film’s presence known on social media, but don’t shy away from alternative platforms like TikTok and Twitter that can find its niche audience with rapid growth. Use a clear message and call to action with branded graphics and universal themes, to create awareness and draw people into your film’s story. The more content you have to work with (film quotes, stills, clips, multiple teasers, behind the scenes, cast interviews, etc.) the more well rounded and engaging your page will be. With robust social pages setup you can run ads, drive traffic to your website, drive flash sales and other promos, and create a larger awareness for your film. This is why social media remains one of the best film marketing methods.
3. Word of Mouth can Help Sell Your FilmWord of mouth, or as we like to call it ‘grassroots marketing’, is among the cheapest and highly effective methods of promoting your independent film. Let people know you are working on your film and ask them to share it around. This way, you can reach many people and draw audiences you wouldn't otherwise attract with advertisements. Leveraging aligned influencers and micro-influencers with swag, a free screener, cross promotions, or small paid fees as incentives is a great way for them to promote the film, grow your social following, spread awareness, and drive new audiences to key campaigns. Once you establish your film among trusted aligned communities you can have more in depth collaborations like live streams, giveaways, and more. Lean into your personal network as well. People easily trust things said by their close friends, family members, and other prominent critics.
4. Consider a Public EventIf you have the budget, staging a public event is great as it easily attracts people who may come just to see what's happening, ultimately sparking their interest in your film. Getting key or notable cast involved and capturing the event on the film’s social channels is going to give you a boost in traffic, engagement, and sales. Whether it's a 5k run or a red carpet premiere, events are great for promoting your film.
5. Do Not Forget About a Movie TrailerYou can't have an independent film without a movie trailer. A trailer is a two-minute opportunity to grab the attention of your prospective viewers and leverage high engaging video content. So use masterful storytelling to create a funny, compelling trailer that would make people want to view your film, and add keywords to increase the trailer’s views on YouTube. Making a trailer part of your film marketing plan gives viewers a glimpse of what to expect in the actual film and could be a key factor when trying to get your film to #1 on iTunes or other notable platforms.
Why Is Marketing Important for Your Film?
Marketing your film has many benefits to your newly created film for either a digital release, theatrical release, or both! A well-marketed film reaches targeted masses of people who will talk about it and let others know about it, creating the excitement to watch the film and boost link clicks and sales. When you market your film, you create new opportunities for yourself and show that the movie is worthwhile based on a custom message and brand you want your film to be seen as. It could also result in new friendships and partnerships that could propel your next project.
Important Tips for Promoting Your Film
Different social media platforms work differently and offer unique features. If you’re all about visual advertising, Instagram and Pinterest are best for you. You may want to try your brand on several or new platforms and see how well your accounts perform and which platforms are delivering for your organization.
Understand Your Target AudienceUnderstanding what your target audience wants in a film is important. Know where your audience is and the best way to reach them. Also, ensure you find out what interests them and provide just that in your film marketing campaign. Targeting based on location, age, cast fans, subgenres seen in the film, etc. is your best place to start.
Have a Better Way of Reaching Your AudienceThere are several options for reaching your target audience, including blogging, film festivals, promotional materials, and social media. Ensure you understand the best way of getting in contact with them. Still, social media remains one of the best options to promote films.
Consider the Size of Your AudienceIf you have a limited budget, consider your audience's size when thinking about promoting your film. It will help you to create a good film marketing plan that works.
Take the Knowledge & Make Moves
By promoting your film, you increase its audience and make it more desirable. That might give you access to new possibilities. As such, knowing how to promote your film is very important. Make sure you market your film the right way with a team of dedicated experts with Vanquish Media Group.
Start Your Campaign Today
If you want results like these for your next project then signup to speak with one of our team members. We'll discuss what you can be doing to boost your company's results.