Web A-Z For Filmmakers

Making a film is hard enough. In this day and age, you are also going to need a website. Starting a website can be tough work—getting the world to see it can be even more tedious. Whether you’re starting a website to promote your production company or an individual film, creating a website and an internet network can be the best way to spread the word. Don’t get lost on the information highway! These tips will show you how to begin:

1) Choose a name for your URL.

It should be simple, relevant and easy to remember. If you’re promoting a film, usually the title and the word ‘movie’ make a good URL name. Whatever it is, don’t try to play tricks with the name like dropping letters or adding dashes. The name you choose should be available in organic form, so make sure to check its availability before marrying the idea of a URL name.

2) Use Keywords

Google and eBay both have keyword tools to let you know what the top words and phrases are at the moment. Monitor these tools for a few weeks and see if you can incorporate a word or phrase into the title of your movie.

3) Get a Logo.

You’ll want this for all the following steps. You can either make one yourself simply in an application like Photoshop or InDesign, or get a crafty friend to help you. If you want more help, websites like CrowdSpring and 99Designs let you launch contests for designers to create your logo. For a small fee, you’ll have plenty of great looking options to choose from.

4) Create a Simple Website.

Right off the bat you probably won’t have too much information to put on the front page; that’s OK. In the beginning all you’ll need is enough information to get it generated in Google searches. Just make a clean, organized front page with film/production details and your great, new logo. Try to use an easy content management system to build your pages, which means you won’t have to toy around with HTML codes.

5) Get Other Sites to Link to Yours.

This will generate traffic and get your website into the Google crawler. If you have a personal page, or if family members and friends have sites and blogs they can post the link at, do it. The more links the better.

6) Get it On the Social Networks.

Make a Twitter account and a Facebook fan page to promote your film or production company. Make the names for each match your domain name and display your logo. On Facebook, give some information about your film or service. On Twitter, tweet once or twice each day about your progress. Link both pages to your website and vice versa.

7) Start a Film Blog on Your Website.

You can write the actual blog on a free hosting site like WordPress or Blogger. Don’t use their domain name—register the blog as ‘blog.filmtitle.com.’ This gives you greater control of the SEO authority. Then, link the blog to your homepage. Update the blog a couple times a week with humorous anecdotes, informative updates, photos, whatever you like.

8) Start Building Contacts on Twitter and Facebook.

Using the Twitter Grader Search feature, find high-impact film Twitter-ers and start following them. Organize all your fans on Facebook into a separate group. Start to build relationships with these people.

9) Find Bloggers who are Writing About Independent Film.

Read them daily. If you have something relevant or interesting to say, leave feedback in their comment boxes.

10) Fix Your Website with Website Grader.

Website Grader is a tool that gives marketing reports to submitted websites. Fix the things it suggests and your grade should improve quickly.

11) Get Analytics.

Web analytics software lets you monitor your web traffic. Google has a fantastic and free analytics tool. You can see where visitors are coming from, what links they click on most, what keywords they’re finding you with, some programmes even show you how long people stayed on each page. Using this information, you can make some educated decisions about what’s working, and what you need to do to take your site to the next level.

Sooner or later you are going to have to log out of your Linked In account, stop composing Tweets and decline pokes and party invites on Facebook and actually make your movie.

Best!
.Elliot Grove

 

 

 

Elliot Grove

Elliot Grove

About Elliot Grove

Elliot Grove founded Raindance as a thought experiment: Can you make a film with no money, no training and no experience, he asked?

When people like his first intern Edgar Wright started making movies he started the Raindance Film Festival to celebrate their work in 1993, the British Independent Film Awards in 1998, and Raindance.TV in 2007.

Elliot has produced over 150 short films, and 5 feature films. He has written eight scripts, one of which is currently in pre-production. His first feature film, TABLE 5 (1997) was shot on 35mm and completed for a total of £278.38. He teaches writers and producers in the UK, Europe, Japan and America. In 2006 he produced the multiple-award winning The Living and the Dead.

In 2013 he relaunched the production arm: Raw Talent with the cult film director Ate de Jong. Their first venture was the psychological thriller Deadly Virtues: Love.Honour.Obey. finished late 2013.

In the summer of 2014 Raindance Film Festival barked on a groundbreaking tour of Britain: 10 films in six cities with the Festival Screening Partner, VUE Cinemas.

He has written three books which have become industry standards: RAINDANCE WRITERS LAB 2nd Edition (Focal Press 2008), Raindance Producers' Lab: Lo-To-No Budget Filmmaking (Focal Press 2013) and 130 PROJECTS TO GET YOU INTO FILMMAKING (Barrons 2009). He was awarded a PhD in 2009 for services to film education. His first novel THE BANDIT QUEEN is scheduled for publication next year.

Elliot teaches several courses at Raindance including Lo To No Budget Filmmaking and Writer's Foundation Certificate

Read articles by Elliot Grove.

The brilliant artist, filmmaker and photographer Rankin has included Elliot in his fascinating, shocking and entertaining book, F*K Y*U. We have one in the office that amuses and shocks everyone who looks at it. Get a copy. It will delight your friends

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