September 19, 2014 at 11:05AM
PART 3 - How to Create Thousands of Fans for your Film Before You Shoot a Single Minute
The last two posts, we talked about how to identify who your potential fans are (http://nofilmschool.com/boards/discussions/how-create-thousands-fans-you...), where to find them and how to approach these perfect strangers to create a relationship (http://nofilmschool.com/boards/discussions/part-2-how-create-thousands-f...). But once you’ve began that relationship, how do you turns convert these relationships into viewers, superfans and or cash?
I have some experience with this as an author. One of my pen names will easily make a six-figure income in the next 12 months and one of the ways I was able to achieve that is by doing some of the things mentioned in these posts.
First of all, some people say they don’t have the time to reach out to people but in reality, if you have 30 minutes a day (that’s 15 minutes in the morning or during lunch and 15 minutes before you go to bed) you can do this. The more time you put into it, the more you get out. You just have to want to. And if you’re not a people person, find someone who is.
STEP 1 - You need to know what is your ultimate goal and be specific.
* Is it to get the attention of agents or studio executives? If so which agents and which studios?
* Is it to make enough money to support yourself so you don’t have to work a day job? How much money would that be exactly?
* Is it to make a social or emotional impact in the world? If so what is it that you want the world to feel or do after they see your film?
* Or is it become famous? Does that mean winning a specific award or do you only want to be famous to a specific niche of people?
STEP 2 -Since you’ve already identified who your potential audience is and they are already pre-qualified because you’ve done the work to know that they’re interested in your type of film, you need to get them emotionally invested in your film. It’s not what your film is about but rather WHY they’re interested that will drive them to support your film. Please, run, don’t walk and watch Simon Sinek’s video on Start with Why for more info on this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u4ZoJKF_VuA Give them a reason WHY they should care. One of my favorite quotes from Oprah Winfrey is to “find a cause greater than our own.” They are not supporting your film just because. They are supporting it because they like and can relate to you, or they like the message of the film or because you’re from their hometown or because they like the concept or something else. Some investors are not investing in films just to make their money back, some have literally told me, they want something interesting to tell people when they go to cocktail parties or because they want their daughter who is horrid-looking and an even worse actor, to be a star. Find out why they are or should be interested. Why can you relate to them?
STEP 3 - Get them emotionally engaged with the creative process. How do you get them emotionally engaged? Let them be part of the process while you are creating your film. Listen to their input, show them their input is important and valuable to you and thank them for it. For example, ask them what they think about a certain character in your film, to read a part of your script, ask their opinion on a character’s costume or the musical score. Invite them to be an extra on the set or to help you choose between actors while you’re casting it. You see, many people are so busy with their own lives but they’d love to be involved in something like this. They may not have the time or talent to do so, and so they are living vicariously through you. Let them. Reward them by giving them bonuses or significant discounts, praising them publicly on Twitter, asking the most enthusiastic to be part of your street team, anything you can think of to give them the attention and praise they deserve. Can they tweet out your film or host a clip on their blog? Do they know the local movie theater manager? Is their cousin a B-list star that owes them a favor? By letting them get involved in the process, this collaboration can open up a lot of doors for you. You will get immediate feedback on your film while you are writing it so you can avoid certain pitfalls as well.