Since our first screening in a film festival last year, we’ve learned a lot of lessons. Often times filmmakers are so concentrated on making their movie that they forget the business of movies. The business of movies is the vehicle that gets your film longevity beyond the festival circuit. Moving forward, we knew that we had to have a strategy going into future film festivals. We had an opportunity to put our strategy in motion this weekend at the 21st Annual African American Film Marketplace and S.E. Manly Showcase. Over the weekend there were over 50 other films being screened. It was our goal to meet other filmmakers and industry professionals–as I am sure it was with every other filmmaker. So we had to have a plan. It wouldn’t be enough to come in with a great film, there were a ton of other great films. However we knew we had a name that stood out, “LackToast Ent” is a memorable name. So what other way that to remind people of who were were other than t-shirts.
Our t-shirts announced who we were and was also a conversation starter. Once we had the conversation, we were then able to pass out business cards that bare the same logo as our t-shirts and our films. We successfully branded ourselves. For many filmmakers coming up with extra money for the branding of the film is hard to come by. Many people have enough trouble putting money together to get the film made but it is important to remember that marketing is vital to the life of your film. Luckily for us, after doing a lot of research and trying several different companies came across “ooshirts.” Totally professional and affordable–and you don’t have to order in bulk. Our suggestion. Go to film festivals and screenings, even if you don’t have a film screening. It is a great time to network and to learn from other filmmakers. Take it from us, you don’t want to go in blind the first time in the ring. And when you do go, go in with a strategy!