Friday, May 16, 2008

Mountain Dew funds Indie Film

I came across this article today and wanted to write up a quick post on it... I still hope to have something for Film Fest Friday up later today.

I was talking about product placement and getting financing from marketing budgets in a post a little while ago and here's an actual example. Check out this article from 'Advertising Age' or 'Adage', as they call it - they're pretty much the go-to site when it comes to advertising, marketing and media. The cool thing about the article is that it's from the perspective of the marketer, which is, in this case, Mountain Dew, who's financing an indie skater film called, "Deathbowl to Downtown". So, you'll be able to see what a brand would expect to get out of financing or just getting involved with your film.

Now for the rant/explanation part of my post: Product placement, sponsorship and outright advertising has been the business model in TV forever, as in... literally, forever. Basically, they give you content for free in exchange for making you watch ads, which they get paid for. However, with DVR's, VOD, time-shifting, etc... the TV market's become fragmented, eye balls are wandering and people aren't paying attention to ads, so advertisers are looking elsewhere. Further, the lines between TV and film are starting to blur... it's not so much a market where that's a TV program and I watch it on CBS on Thursday's at 9PM or that's a film that I go to the theater to watch it. The new market is, that's content, I don't care where it came from, and I'm watching it on TV, I'm watching it in a theater or even on my phone. So, with blurring lines and a fragmented marketing place, you're going to see more and more advertisers just trying to get involved with content, wherever it originates from. In fact, you're going to see advertisers trying to get everywhere - if you run a festival, it should be easy to get sponsors these days, but I digress...

So, as an indie filmmaker, this means a few things for you. One, (and most importantly) you should never just think of traditional distribution methods anymore. What you're making isn't as much a film as it is content... and people need to be able to view that content any way they want. Two, and the point of this post, remember that marketers and advertisers are yet another potential source for financing. You've got the talent and ability to make a product that people will watch, regardless of whether it's 500 people or 500,000 people... and there's a marketer out there who would pay to get his brand in front of those people.

The next post will be on some horror film festival... I'm trying to figure out which one to talk about.

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