Enjoying my cup of morning tea and researching online strategies for promoting my work. Here are a few I’ve come across that sound promising:
Post and include a Photo Spread: Remembering that the Internet is visual, one DIY strategy for promoting films and film events (premieres, screenings, film festivals etc.) is to write a quick summary (1-2 paragraphs) for your blog, website, and/or Facebook page and illustrate it with as many photos/screenshots as possible, complete with identifying captions and tags. Photos tell your story far better than words. Post them to your blog or website immediately, but wait to post (and link) to Facebook until Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday morning at 9:30 a.m. in the time zone where most of your market is likely to be found (EST for New York, PST for Los Angeles, for example.)
Why 9:30? Social media research has shown that people log-in to Facebook as soon as they get their morning coffee and settle in. The next best times are 11:30 a.m. (just before they go to lunch) and 5:30 p.m. (before they leave work for the day.) Wednesdays are best for having others see and share your post because they’ve caught up on their workload and aren’t yet making plans for the weekend.
If you have a sufficient following on Twitter, also tweet a promotion to direct people to your posting.
Issue a News Release via Email: Once you’ve posted the summary and photos, consider other media opportunities at longer-lead-time film industry publications, websites, e-newsletters and acting/producing blogs.
Turn your summary into a one-page, post-event news release – written third-person; putting the Who, What, Where, Why, When and How in the first paragraph; adding an interesting quote in paragraph 2; and at the end giving a contact number and email address for obtaining more information (you can find effective news release formats on the Web.)
Target editors and reporters at media specializing in acting, independent film, documentaries, etc. If your original post was to a blog, website or other public site, be sure to include a link so editors and reporters can see and download the photos.
Even if it doesn’t generate a story right out of the box, putting your name or production company name in front of the media on a regular basis will develop name recognition and make you and your work known in media circles over time.
Videotape an Interview: Get in the habit of videotaping brief interviews with your director, prominent actor, or screenwriter at your event (premier, festival screening) or onset during filming. Or have someone tape you if your aim is to promote yourself. You don’t need expensive equipment. Even a Flip Ultra camera will do and comes with simple editing software that can help you quickly put together an Internet-ready video.
Remember that the key to a good interview is to draw up your 3-4 questions in advance and let the person you’ll be taping have a look. It helps people focus and gives them time to remember and include interesting anecdotes. If you are the one being taped, consider your audience and how you want to come across on camera. Look at actor interviews online and study those you think are most effective.
When shooting, have the person look just to the side of the camera rather than straight at the camera (you know the drill.) Post the edited tape to your YouTube/Vimeo Channel, then link/embed the video in your website and blog and in posts to Facebook, Twitter, etc. If it turned out especially good, consider writing a 2-sentence intro and emailing it to industry media and other professionals you know in the business.
Employing this strategy gives you a video interview that is easily accessed and shared, and potentially much more attractive than one generated by a reporter—even if it carries a bit less cachet—because you control the message.
I like these and they're do-able.
Now, time to feed the dog.