Marketing a Film
Filmmakers who learn how to market and how to communicate with clients are the ones who make films.
You have nothing to sell, of course, except yourself - and the promise that you can deliver a film that meets your client’s needs.
Don’t try for a film that will win prizes. If you try for a film that will best serve your client´s needs, you will find yourself with a prizewinner ... and a recommendation for another job.
Your reputation is as good as your last film. You build a reputation by taking care of business every day as though your reputation were at stake, because it is.
Knowing how to make a film - knowing how to use the medium to communicate a message - is not enough if you are to become successful. You must also know how to communicate with people who need the films so that you can get a chance to use your creative talents. In business, that’s known as marketing.
Your marketing should begin with a sensible look at what you have to offer. In reality, film is not what you have to offer. What you have to offer are solutions to problems, using film as the medium for communication. That’s what nontheatrical filmmaking is all about.
There are several areas open to the nontheatrical filmmaker - business, education, special interest groups, vacation resorts, governmental agencies All have a use for sponsored nontheatrical films: films that teach, films that promote, films that pass along information.
Basically, there are three types of communication problems: those related to skill and knowledge, motivational problems, and problems of information; and of course, some communication problems are a combination of the three.
The point is, business spends money to make money. A smart business person will provide the money to make a film once there is an understanding that film will help solve a problem. Your job is to discover where a film will help.
(Adapted from “Student Filmmaker’s Handbook)