Once your film is in the can or your show is in rehearsals the marketing aspect of your production becomes crucial. Strong visual imagery and a concise tag line are important for attracting people’s attention to your website, fan page and your production be it a screening or live performances.
I usually allot anywhere from 1/3 to 1/2 of a production’s entire budget to marketing, because it doesn’t matter how brilliant your production is if no one knows about it. Today with the internet and social media there are many other options when it comes to marketing. Advertising in local papers and putting up posters and flyers in local coffee shops, hang outs and businesses are still effective but much of the marketing today is done via social media and subscription mailing lists.
Since so much is done using social media it is important to begin building your brand and online presence early on in the production to generate interest. Today simply having artwork for one poster or flyer isn’t enough. Each social media outlet requires artwork be it Facbook, Twitter, Google Plus, your website, Mailchimp, Youtube etc. and many of these outlets require different image sizes.
You will need to have artwork for profile and banner sizes for all your different outlets. It is a good idea to have several different poster/flyer variations so you can alternate on social media with new posts. Production stills are effective for content updates and to make into meme’s, behind the scenes video clips are great for video promos too.
When you hire your graphic designer have a list of all the variations in sizes and content you are looking for so you can negotiate a fair price for all the work expected and be clear about deadlines. I would also recommend getting a version of a ll the raw files in case things need to be manipulated for a last minute change or in the event the designer moves onto another project and isn’t available to meet your next deadline.
I still believe printed materials can be effective, but before you order 5000 flyers I urge you to consider the realistically if you have that type of manpower. The onus is not on your cast or your crew to market you show (of course they will tell people to come see their work) but it is not realistic to expect them to drive around to coffee shops putting up posters or to stand on the street handing out flyers to strangers. I have personally hung hundreds of posters and handed out thousands of flyers for every play I have produced, but it is my job as the producer to do whatever it takes to make the show successful.