As artists, we can ask you to work relentlessly hard hours, put on layers of zombie makeup, even borrow your expensive gear for a shoot. But you know what we have the hardest time asking for? Money! Luckily, industry professionals like Andrew Frank are around to give us practical advice on getting past our fears with simple advice in this B&H video workshop How to Ask People for Money: Anatomy of a Pitch below.
Andrew Frank is a consultant who has raised money for anything from Broadway plays to the MET Museum and the Lincoln Center. While Frank's seminars usually go for a couple hundred bucks, this B&H video is free! If you're planning on making a film soon, you'll want to soak in Frank's lessons in this workshop:
Video is no longer available: www.youtube.com/watch?v=2N0NPMviIm8
Frank starts with something pretty basic that's at the core of a successful pitch: he wants you to condition yourself to have a positive attitude about the act of asking for money. How do you know if you have a negative attitude about fundraising? Well, take a gander at his list:
If one of those captures how you feel, you're not alone! And you will be a lot better off, at least in the case of raising money for your film, if you can get them out of your system. Frank goes on to outline the four parts of a pitch:
- The Opening
- The Ask (Where you let someone know what you are trying to raise)
- The Story (The journey of your creative project)
- The Wrap Up/Thank you.
Sometimes the hardest part of the pitch is starting! He recommends being upfront about the fact that you are asking for money:
The Opening. Don't skip this, especially with friends. Don't make this mistake: "John, I'm so glad to see you -- how's your brother -- blah blah blah -- " Then 25 minutes later, "By the way, I wanted to ask you, I'm fundraising for this thing." Now John is wondering if he just got suckered, with 25 minutes of lip service.
Watch the entire hour-and-a-half workshop to get tons of practical advice, and then practice it by pitching your next film!
Have you had experience pitching your film? If you have, it means you've probably been rejected at least a few times! What are some of the pitfalls, rejections, or positive reactions you've gotten asking for money?
Link: Andrew Frank -- Website