As part of my ongoing dedication to next generation cinema, I am now going to turn towards the 300 lb elephant in the room. How to get your cinema seen.
Are you right for mainstream distribution and exhibition – or should you be carving a new and unique personal path for your work?
This means a reframing of the DIY and independent feature film distribution clearly outside of the mainstream Hollywood world. I’ve detailed key points here for consideration. These are techniques and approaches I am now using to promote and distribute my own cinema in conjunction with established genre specific labels or distributors when applicable.
Don’t Battle Hollywood.
Your Cinema 2.0 microcinema doesn’t need to compete with the established mainstream cinema output and should clearly embrace the niche-marketing exposure that avant-garde, fine artand experimental cinema clearly allows. What’s your niche?
Embrace Your Own Scene.
By embracing MICRO-FINANCING, MICRO-MARKETING and MICRO-AUDIENCES, you can build a direct peer-to-peer network of like-minded creators and consumers invited through online access. Who’s your audience?
Make A Splash.
Making the film is the easy part. Marketing it is the hardest. Who is marketing your film? #marketit
The continued attempts to storm traditional and established feature film marketplaces (including broadcast television) should be abandoned in favor of directly marketing your work today and building personal interaction between yourself as a creator and your audience as paid consumers. Where are you showing your work? #meetyouraudience
Get The Word Out.
Mainstream movies buy market share through costly public relationship engagements and spends millions positioning their products in the global advertising marketplace. You do not have that leverage. How will audiences know about your work? #getthewordout
Your microcinema must adopt a handmade, artisanal stance reflecting your individual content, your unique points of interest and your stories outside the standardized playbook. It’s what makes the work special. What makes you special? #specialinterest
Know Your Platforms.
The tools of manufacturing content and the ability to consume media have been substantially developed in the digital online world that now allow a smorgasbord of media content for your potential audience. What’s your platform online?
There has to be a specific and unique reason for audiences to want to engage with you.
Why should audiences care about your cinema?
And how do they find you?
As more and more content migrates online, your cinema made-by-hand outside the mainstream needs to adopt a carefully grown, personal and authentic DIY platform for continued evolution.
Community building and creative brand development online allows you to think beyond one project and expand to a scene-based network of like-minded creators and viewers on both sides of the Cinema 2.0 landscape.
Whose part of your ‘Scene’?
Your work must be fulfilling enough for an audience that they want to return once they have found it. This initial interaction interest should be favored over your immediate financial gain.
Who wants to come back to see what you’ve done next?
As you develop interest and followers, you can eventually sell (at a modest price) your films, your merchandise and your madness to a dedicated audience once they are truly interested.
Any attempts to replicate mainstream pricing should be abandoned and replaced by a self-supportive ecosystem designed to bolster your self-expression and artistic integrity – without charge to your audience at first.
You’re trying to build a new family of followers online. #growyourown
Would you charge your family to watch your film?
Your Cinema 2.0 microcinema represents a unique, rare, specialized and independent motion picture scene existing outside of conventional movie markets. Start by embracing your status and develop a loyal and interested following by NEVER stopping.
Once you start making cinema and sharing it, your audience will want more. Give them what they want. Now.