Keys to building film festival audiences!

Film festivals need a lot of promotions & marketing to be successful!

Keys to building film festival audiences!

Keys to building film festival audiences! Film festivals need a lot of promotions & marketing to be successful!

Here are my favorite keys to building film festival audiences:

  • Email: Email is one of the most important marketing tools you have to promote your film festival. According to a recent McKinsey & Company study, email is still 40 times more effective at acquiring customers than Facebook and Twitter combined.The Austin Film Festival uses email for direct communication to their audience. They see most of their returns from dedicated email subscribers, and use an email marketing platform to compare and report email performance.
  • Social Media: Visual storytelling comes to us naturally. Humans process visuals faster than they process text. Considering our attention span is about 3.9 seconds long, presenting information as visuals just makes sense.
  1. Facebook and Twitter are the two most useful social media channels for growing your audience. Facebook is more conducive to marketing with information, whereas Twitter is best for shoutouts, retweets and community engagement.
  2. Instagram is good for brand building and photo sharing, but it’s still a relatively small platform.
  3. YouTube is great to post behind-the-scenes video content on festival events throughout the year to keep people engaged.
  4. Pinterest drives more traffic than Google+, YouTube & LinkedIn combined. Mainly, the site now attracts women in the age range 25-44 who love fashion, home decorating and family related products. As it gains more of a following, this is bound to change.
  • Sponsorships and Partnerships: Sponsorships can be a huge gateway to growing recognition and audience. Partnerships with institutions, brands, and businesses can bring additional value to your festival through in-kind donations and exposure. Getting businesses and influencers to back your festival where there’s a mutual exchange will build the momentum and your reputation. Use this social currency to expand your reach.
  • One-on-one promotions: We’re bombarded by messages every day. Community Engagement Committees are a great way to engage with people directly, and bring your value to them.
  • Press-kits: I’m a big fan of press-kits. They ensure that reporters, bloggers your audience and sponsors have what they need. Key to success is an easy-to-find contact link and phone number.
  • Off-line promotions: Don’t forget newspapers, flyers, flags, posters, presentations at community meetings and events, cross-promotions with other festivals, etc.

I’d love to hear your suggestions for building film festival audiences! If you’re interested in our CS&I Film Festival PR/Marketing Template? Contact deborah@creative-si.com.

 

The Power of Community Engagement Committees to market your Film Festival

film reel

 

Holding a film festival? Well, your festival promotion is key to its success.

Word of Mouth (WOM) still rules when engaging people to participate. Through WOM marketing you:

  • Invite community organizations to join you and promote the films to their members.
  • Ask volunteers and members to invite their friends and family.
  • Send messages that your team can forward to their email list.
  • Always include information about and a link to ticket sales.

*       Checkout Promoting a Film Festival in Three Weeks! 

Increase the power of WOM through a Community Engagement Committee. Charge the committee to assist in promoting your film festival to various groups within your greater community.

Your committee’s success depends on having  a good marketing tool kit. My favorite was developed for the 2014 Atlanta Jewish Film Festival Community Engagement Committee. The toolkit is a link on the film festival website that is only accessible by committee members.

Steps to creating a Community Engagement Toolkit:

  • Create PDF files of the movie description in your film festival program. Here are a couple examples:

Brave Miss World

Esther Broner: A Weave of Women

  • Create a Handout of films by subject. Key each film to the page in the program.
  • Post a PDF of the Film Festival Program
  • Create a file that shows where each film is showing and at what time
  • Provide incentives for committee members to use such as discount price codes and group prices
  1. Schedule meetings with Community Engagement committee members.
  2. Provide a list of materials that can be found on Community Engagement Link.
  3. Capture information on outreach possibilities discussed at meetings.
  4. Offer staff support if a committee member needs help putting together visuals for face to face meetings.
  5. Create a tracking tool for committee members.
  6. Create a master spreadsheet of what outreach worked.

Another Community Engagement Toolkit favorite is Reel Power Films Fueling the Energy Revolution. 

Do you have any suggestions for a Community Engagement Toolkit? We’d love to hear from you.

Want a copy of the CS&I Film Festival PR Template? Please contact me at deborah@creative-si.com.

Enjoy the film festival!!