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10 Ways You Can Save Money On Marketing & Distribution

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A day late and a dollar short.

Join the club. Most of us feel that way with our marketing and distribution campaigns. If we only had another few months. If we only had another few thousand. Then …

Let us give you a little insight that you already know but likely forgot. Even the biggest studios with the most resources say that. More time. More budget. In fact, we think every content-creator has an entrepreneurial impulse that likes the thrill of making something out of nothing.

Now we may not be able to stop time but we can certainly stop wasting money. It’s true, that familiar saying, “the only way to make money is to spend money.” With one minor edit, if we may. ” … to spend money wisely.”

It’s cringe-worthy to see how much money is spent:

  1. Because everyone else does it
  2. Because some consultant or expert told you to
  3. Because it makes you feel like you are winning
  4. Because you think it can work

Again, been there and done that.

We’ve worked directly or indirectly, on and around, a hundred and something marketing, distribution, and publicity campaigns. We’ve seen a lot. Maybe too much at times as we likely know more of what NOT to do than what to do. Maybe this list will help. Maybe you disagree (which we would welcome and would appreciate your comments on why).

10 Ways You Can Save Money On Marketing and Distribution:

  1. Television ads. Unless you’re a studio movie, don’t even think about spending money on television.
  2. Publicists. Hire a publicist for two months — one month before release, one month after. Don’t put a publicist on a long retainer.
  3. Websites. Squarespace is $20 bucks a month. Even better, use Altavod. It’s free and growing fast.
  4. Theatrical. The vast majority of indie films should never go to theaters. Think twice whether you have the firepower (audience and resources) to make it work.
  5. Printed movie posters. Movie art is reconfigured in dozens of formats, dimensions, and layouts to accommodate digital platforms. Don’t fall in love with your theatrical poster — the only place it will be on display is at your home office.
  6. Email Blasts. Have you seen the open rates recently?
  7. Designers. Need some referrals? We can give you great names of proven, top-shelf designers for posters and key art that work on the best and biggest movies and shows.
  8. Social. What’s missing most in social management is really good messaging. The mechanics of social are not complicated or expensive; it’s not the tricks of the trade that get you fans and followers, engagements, and momentum. It is the message of your social. Your vibe. Focus on that first.
  9. Conferences and Conventions. Don’t do it. No booths. No flyers stuffed into gift bags. No trailers playing during the coffee and bathroom breaks. Unless the conference is licensing the film or creating a unique experience that delivers sales or data, don’t do it.
  10. Distributor marketing caps. Find distributors who put skin in the game. Who share some of the risk and reward. You will save yourself money (plus what you will spend on aspirin) if you have a distributor that is aligned with your goals and puts you, not their overhead, first.

There you go. If you add this up, you are likely saving anywhere from $15,000 to $60,000 dollars just on these ten items. Maybe more for some movies and shows.

Check out our future post on ways to make money on your film and show.

Agree? Disagree? Let us know below.

©Aspiration Entertainment, 2020

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