How To Harness Twitter For Your Film’s Crowdfunding Campaign

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At Film Sprites PR we have a particular fondness for Twitter. After all, it’s how we got started. We’ve seen how incredibly powerful it can be to convey a message, bring people together and grow a film’s audience.

It can also be a powerhouse when it comes to spreading the word about your film during a crowdfunding campaign. In 140 characters you can spread the word, share your vision and have contributors helping to back your creation. We’ve assisted with many crowdfunding campaigns for films, both in pre-production and post-production, and we’ve seen how well Twitter can work for crowdfunding. Most recently we assisted with the successful Kickstarter for Daphne Fisher’s Enough, helping to not only secure the $6K goal but also helping to raise an additional $945.

So how can you, as a filmmaker, harness the little blue bird to help secure the funds you need for your film? Here’s a few tips to help you make the best of Twitter during your crowdfunding campaign:

Make the most of the 140: 140 characters doesn’t seem like a lot to work with, but it can be done! The link to your crowdfunding campaign generally tends to be quite short, but if you want to Tweet things like trailers, links to interviews etc you can’t go wrong with free link shortening services like Ow.ly. Thankfully images are now no longer included in the character amount, which means you can add images to your Tweet without compromising the amount of characters you have left.

Spam is a meat product, not a crowdfunding tactic: imagine you’re staying in a small motel. It’s 6:00am in the morning and there’s a knock at the door. You open the door and immediately, without greeting, someone says: “help me crowdfund my film!”

You’re annoyed and close the door, hoping to get back to sleep, but because you’re in a small motel with no soundproofing you end up hearing every other room in the hotel being harassed by this random doorknocker, piping up with: “help me crowdfund my film!” every time the door is opened. Wouldn’t that infuriate you?

Time and again we’ve seen people who use this tactic for crowdfunding: they Tweet at every one of their followers (and often people who aren’t followers at all) one by one with the exact same message. There are problems with this tactic: 1) it takes the ‘social’ out of ‘social media’ and 2)if people are following you, they’re seeing the same Tweet over and over again, sent to various people. At best, people might mute you on their Twitter feed. At worst, they’ll block you.

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Storyteller, tell your story: you are, by nature, a storyteller. You know your film has an important story to tell. Here’s where you can use Twitter to your advantage to make your followers take notice, contribute to your campaign and spread the word themselves.

Let people know your “why”: hopefully this will come through in your pitch video, so don’t be afraid to share the pitch vid via Twitter.

Behind the scenes footage and photos are particularly effective as well- you would be amazed at how many people genuinely appreciate being shown the inner workings of a film.

People feel included if they get a glimpse into your world. Tweets with images tend to get a better response with followers, so share a range of images: concept art, a peek at the script, images of the (undoubtedly) fantastic perks available at your campaign, poster art…there are endless possibilities.

As well as sharing your own story and filmmaking journey, make sure you share the story of the film itself. Teaser trailers, storyboards, stills from your film….they all serve to tantalize your audience and bring them to your campaign to help make it a success.

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Manners are the New Black: it may be a social media platform, but don’t forget to thank your backers, re-tweeters and fans! An attitude of gratitude goes a long way with your followers. Think about really creative ways of thanking them; perhaps a quick update video on your campaign page thanking each of your contributors…get creative with your gratitude and you will see results.

Where’s the beef? Not on your timeline: a short word on Twitter trolls, but you know this already: don’t engage. Just block them and move along.

Most importantly- have fun. The crowdfunding process can be stressful at times, but it can also be incredibly rewarding and fun, especially when you’re using Twitter to assist with your campaign efforts. Using Twitter in creative ways for your campaign can help you to push that little progress bar right past the 100% mark. Happy crowdfunding!

Want sparkling publicity and digital marketing for your film? Check out what we offer HERE, or download our services pamphlet HERE.

Exciting Updates and News in the New Year

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Film Sprites PR has been back in the office from January 14th, so we wish everyone a belated Happy New Year!

We had a tremendously exciting 2016 and 2017 looks set to be just as exciting. Some of the things that are currently happening for past and current clients:

  • Mad Shelley Films (the award-winning makers of popular short film The Halloween Girl) have released their brand new supernatural webseries Under The Flowers. The series consists of 4 short episodes, each episode premiering every Sunday. The first two episodes have been released and are available to view on the official website, with the third episode premiering this coming Sunday. Already the series has attracted praise from Popcorn Horror, Movie and TV Series Geek, and Movie Critic Next Door. It was also front-page news in the Courier-Post.

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  • In case you haven’t seen it yet, writer/filmmaker Oliver Park‘s multiple award-winning horror short VICIOUS is now available to view for free on YouTube. VICIOUS is the winner of eight awards internationally, including Gold Award for Best International Film at Toronto After Dark and Platinum Award at the LA Horror Competition. It was also nominated for a further seven awards, including Melis d’Argent at Molins in Spain. We’re aiming to get VICIOUS to 1 million views by March, so if you love it, please make sure you share with other horror-loving film fans! You can see the film here. Oliver Park’s follow-up to VICIOUS, STILL, will be released in 2017.

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  • We also have exciting updates from two crowdfunding campaigns Film Sprites PR successfully assisted in reaching their campaign goals: Enough, from filmmaker Daphne Fischer and Medusa’s Kitchen, the fourth short film in the Northern Line Series, created by Jessica Burn and produced by Fall of the House Productions. Both films are in post-production! We will keep you updated with regards to release dates.
  • We’re always keen to partner with groups and individuals from all facets of the film industry, and recently we’ve partnered with FGN Inc. to support their “For A Positive Future” Campaign, aiming to change the world “one message at a time” and foster diversity, equality, solidarity and positive mental health in the film/TV industries and beyond. You can find out more about the Campaign here.

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  • And while it’s usually our role to secure media placements for our clients, sometimes we’re asked to be featured as well! Recently our founder and head publicist, Lynnaire MacDonald, chatted with Dave Bullis on his podcast about marketing of indie films and more. Click here to listen to the episode.

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  • And finally, our brand new services pamphlet is here! It contains all the information you need that is available here on the website, but in a PDF that you can take with you and read anywhere. You can download the pamphlet here.

Don’t forget, we absolutely love connecting with filmmakers, media and film fans around the world! You can catch up with us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.You can also connect with our founder, Lynnaire, via LinkedIn.

Film Sprites PR: 2016 In Review

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It’s been a whirlwind of a year here at Film Sprites PR and we’ve had the pleasure of assisting so many wonderful filmmakers with publicity and digital marketing of their films at various stages of production. That being said, we want to take a look back at what the year was like for us. Grab a cuppa, sit back and find out what we got up to in 2016.

The year started for us with Life Off Grid, a Canadian documentary which explored the lives of Canadians who had chosen to build their lives around renewable energy. The film had a very special advanced screening at Academy Cinemas in Auckland, followed by a Q&A session with producer Phillip Vannini. Prior to the film we held a press junket so media could have a chat with Phillip.  You can read a great review of the film over at Cinemaddicts NZ.

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In February we rolled up our sleeves to assist with the Kickstarter for D.R Hood’s feature film THIS FAMILY. THIS FAMILY is the second feature film for writer/director D.R Hood, whose first feature Wreckers made its UK debut at the BFI London International Film Festival 2011, where it was nominated for best British debut. It would go on to win the Perspectives award at Moscow IFF 2012. Wreckers starred Shaun Evans, Benedict Cumberbatch and Claire Foy. THIS FAMILY is currently in post-production and we’re tremendously excited about the future of the film. You can read an interview with D.R Hood over at the Turnabout Media website.

Speaking of crowdfunding campaigns, we also assisted Fall of the House Productions with their IndieGoGo campaign for Medusa’s Kitchen, the fourth short film in their Northern Line Series. The series is based around modern re-tellings of Greek myths and legends set along London’s Northern Line stations. It’s such a tremendously fun series and it was a delight to be able to help the team raise 101% at their crowdfunding campaign! You can see the first three films in the series here.

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Very recently we also had the great privilege of assisting young filmmaker Daphne Fischer with the Kickstarter for her short film Enough. We began providing digital marketing assistance for the campaign only 5 days away from the end of the campaign and by the end of the campaign the target of $6000 had not only been reached but a further $945 was raised. Enough aims to shed a light on the issues women face in regards to eating disorders and body image, so we were pleased to be able to assist a young female filmmaker to gain the funds she needed to make this story come to life.

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We have also had the great privilege of working with filmmakers we’ve worked with previously, continuing a great ongoing relationship where we could provide them with publicity and digital marketing of their films. We assisted Mad Shelley Films with the freeview month of their award-winning short film The Halloween Girl, and we are currently working on publicity and digital marketing for their up-coming limited series, Under The Flowers, which will debut January 15, 2017.

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We’ve also continued providing ongoing digital marketing and publicity for writer/filmmaker Oliver Park. His first short film, Vicious, continues to be a fan favourite and was even featured in this Buzzfeed article, 16 Terrifying Horror Movies You Can Watch in 20 Minutes or Less. His second short, STILL, has been on the film festival circuit this year, so watch this space for its public release in 2017!

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It was also great to provide digital marketing assistance to Adam Nelson’s short film Emotional Motor Unit. The film has been doing wonderfully at film festivals and has received glowing reviews.

Sometimes when it came to liaising with the media, it was us on the receiving end of interviews! This year Head Sprite Lynnaire was interviewed by Cinemaddicts NZ, Write Out of LA and the Young Women Entrepreneur’s Club. There are two new podcast interviews in the pipeline coming very soon.

2017 is going to be our third year of operation, and our biggest year yet. You can read about how we’re working to assist even more filmmakers in 2017 here.

A massive thank you to the media we connect with, the filmmakers we have the privilege of working with and supporting, as well as friends, family and supporters. We absolutely couldn’t do this without any of you and for that we’re grateful!

Film Sprites PR will be on summer vacation from December 14 2016 until January 14 2017.