So I had the pleasure of speaking at the HollyShorts! Film Festival at a “fireside chat” with my brotha from another mutha RB Blotto from Stage32.com. We sat down and discussed How to Brand, Market and Build an Audience Using Social Media & Marketing Hustle.
I had a ball and as promised I recorded the evening for those of you who couldn’t make it. Check it out below:
You’ve got an amazing script, now what? The first step is to identify your audience and create a brand for yourself that you can leverage when crowdfunding or selling your film. Once your film is done, the next step is marketing and promotion. Join us for a fireside chat with Filmtrepreneur and Filmmaker and Indie Film Hustle founder, Alex Ferrari, and RB Botto, Stage32.com founder, as they offer best practices on building an audience, creating a brand, marketing yourself and your film, and finally, getting the word out via social media, which is crucial to your success.
Sit back and enjoy this knowledge bomb filled episode.
Alex Ferrari 1:37
So today guys, we have a special treat. I was invited by Holly shorts, the holly shorts Film Festival, to speak at a at a panel not a panel, actually, it's a fireside chat I did with RB from stage 32. And it was a it was a fireside chat about how to brand market and build an audience using social media and marketing hustle. And it really went well happened last night. And as promised, I wanted to bring it to the tribe. For those tribe members who didn't get a chance to come out and see it. It was a packed house by the way. I was standing room only. So and for the tribe members that did come out. Thank you so much so much. It was a great meeting you guys. And I'm so humbled by the kind words and inspiration that this podcast and what I do at any film hustle has provided you guys, so keep that hustle going man like I always say and, and don't ever, ever stop chasing that dream, but do it smart, which is what you guys are doing. So anyway, I wanted to bring this, this fireside chat with RB which was great. We talked about so many things between how to brand yourself how to how to use crowdsourcing, crowdfunding, social media etiquette, all sorts of different things that both of us talked about. And it's really, really great, great talk, everybody in the room really, really enjoyed it. From what we saw, everybody was taking a lot of notes, which is always a good sign. So this is a long one a thing, it's almost two hours, we talked a lot. So please enjoy it, take it bit by bit, you don't have to sit around for the full two hours. But enjoy it, I think you guys are gonna get a lot out of it. And also the audio quality is the best I could get from the camera that I had last night, guys. So please bear with me, it is a little bit, you know, not you're not what you're used to, but stick with it. It's more than acceptable. So you should be able to hear it without a problem. And also before I before we get into the to the fireside chat, guys, I want to let you guys know if if you guys are filmmakers, and you have short films, I mean, you've got to submit to the holly shorts Film Festival and I'm not being paid to say that by the way. I just love Danny and Theo so much, man, these guys are awesome. They really, really, really believe in filmmakers and wanting to put the spotlight on them. And they're just it's a great festival. There's a handful of big la short film festivals or LA festival that deal with shorts. And they by far are the best and treat their filmmakers the best as opposed to another big Short Film Festival here in Los Angeles that does not treat their filmmakers well and I would stay away from that one if you want to know the name of that festival. just messaged me on Facebook and I'll be more than happy to let you know. But this this, this film festival is amazing. So it's almost over I think we're going to be I think they were going to be going to the closing party on Friday. But next year Oh, and they have they also have monthly monthly screenings as well. So definitely check them out. They do it. They're doing a lot of great stuff. So just check out Holly shorts.com. And check out what they're doing. And definitely if you have a short, this is a festival if you want to get attention from the LA area where a lot of more people that are in the business show up to this festival. This is one to spend the money on guys. And again, not getting paid to say this. I just love the boys and I love what they're doing. So check it out Holly shorts.com. Now without further ado, let me get to the fireside chat with my main brother from another mother RB from stay steady to enjoy guys.
First time in a walk out Alex Ferrari from indie film hustle. And for those of you who don't know, Alex, he runs a very, very popular website, any film, hustle calm, if you're not familiar with it, definitely check it out. He provides so much content. I don't know how you do it. Because it's run solely by him. And he also runs a magnificent podcast as well for independent filmmakers. And then I'm going to invite our second panelist here. Richard RB bato, who's the founder and CEO of stage32.com. And for those of you who may not know are He not only is he the founder and CEO of our networking platform for federal traders, but he himself is also a screenwriter, a producer, and an actor. So these are creative, just like you actually Alex just finished his first ever speaker this week as well. So you're gonna be a great hands today. These guys know so much about what's going on in the industry. And I'm looking forward to you guys starting your social media hustle tonight.
RB Botto 7:07
Well, we want to have you want to tell everybody a little about you. Sure, yeah, absolutely.
Alex Ferrari 7:12
My name is Alex Ferrari guys, I run a website called indie film hustle. I've been in the business for about 20 years and over 20 years now, in all areas of production, post production director about 15 years do commercials and music videos, I just finished shooting my first feature film last week, I'm almost done with the edit this week. Don't ask me out obviously now if you want. But that's where we're at. And we also have the host of number one filmmaking podcast on iTunes, as a podcast, and as Amanda says, I put out a tremendous amount of content every week and a feed off itself. And that's the reason why I call it was I hustled a lot. And this is websites only. So within three months, I was the number one filmmaking podcast purely because I don't want anybody else's output. And that was just basically just with so much content out that it said, well, let's get into it. And so a perfect example, what can be done, especially social media might bring up my my account later. But that account started a year ago with zero followers. And prior to starting anything, hustle I was I kind of left the business for a minute and then came back and I started from scratch. So a lot of stuff we're going to talk about now I've learned over the last year is pretty current. So that's a little bit about myself.
RB Botto 8:50
You should definitely check out that podcast. It's amazing is amazing. Yes. Yes, well then check out that episode. My name is Rich Bado. As some of you might know me as RB, if you don't feel free to call me I'll be the founder and CEO of Stage32, which Amanda mentioned, is sort of like LinkedIn meets lender to be all familiar with Linda is one of the big educational platforms on the web that was actually purchased by LinkedIn. So we like that comparison. So like LinkedIn meets Lynda fulfilled creators get about 500,000 people worldwide on the site. Since we're talking about social media, the reason I started the platform was because I hated social media. And the reason I hated social media was because as a young creative myself, I wasn't getting anything out of social media wasn't an ad on Facebook, it was LinkedIn. I didn't care about what people were eating for lunch, and he cared about the kids. I didn't care about the adults, adults, mostly actually I didn't care about if I really cared about they would text me or email them to me or whatever. So I just wasn't getting anything out of social media. And I thought that a niche social media site strictly for the film community was the way to go. And since nobody else was doing it, I decided to do it in 2000 11 and a half million people worldwide that use the site for networking, education, applying for everything if you think you do on social media for all sorts of creative as I mentioned this sort of as an actor in New York theater producer, I produce the film that went to Sundance in 2011, called Happy Day writer, replicated Greenblatt have a film set of a COVID Media right now that is in the casting phase of his casting stage, I should say, Director attached and all that. So a little bit of everything and a lot of things sometimes, but mostly a little bit. So we're gonna talk a lot about social media tonight. I don't know how we want to do this format a little, you know, obviously, it's sort of like a fireside chat kind of thing. But would you guys prefer asking questions throughout? Or do you want to wait until the you know, last half hour? How would you guys like to do it? Don't all answer remineralise? interactive, let's make it interactive. Alright, cool. What do you want to be in?
Alex Ferrari 11:04
I was a small child. What was our first,
RB Botto 11:09
I believe we did put a list together. But so I think we're separating or recreating a brand on social
Alex Ferrari 11:14
media. Um, well, for me, at least, my experience of creating a brand. Like I said before, muscle just started a year ago. So it was, it was nothing It was no brand is, is is literally nothing to do either about it at all. So I started it from scratch. And I use social media to build up its appearance of being bigger. So a lot of times, I use Twitter a lot. Twitter became my main, my main social media, or social media accounts. I use Facebook a lot. And actually, most of my traffic and attention comes from Facebook. But it's Facebook's algorithm and all that sends that just changed so much that to get any sort of traction on Facebook in this portion of day. But Twitter, at least for me, what I use Twitter for is for social proof. So when I tweeted rb, which has a lot of ways I guess I connected with people in amazing people that have never had access to purely because and when I tweeted a B, I don't know how many followers I had at that point. But I'm assuming when I tweeted to my Hey, be great to come on the show. I'm sure the first thing we did was to go and check my Twitter account, see if it was two people following me or if it was 10,000 people. And then based on that appearance, I'm sure he probably did a little bit more and I'm talking about.
RB Botto 12:41
But I'm sure if I click on that.
Alex Ferrari 12:44
I'm sure you went to my website and check this out before we started the conversation. But that Twitter was the first line of defense and I reached out to australie screenwriters and producers all via Twitter. And I just literally tweet them. It's the most ridiculous thing. I'm like, hey, big fan, would you like to be on the show? And they come back? And like Yeah, sure. And then sometimes I've gotten to CEOs of companies, and CEOs of companies within minutes to be back. Yeah, let's schedule something. I'm like, I'm sitting in my office by myself talking to this huge person in the business as a huge company. But it all started with Twitter. And, you know, I built Twitter up in a very specific way I have over 30,000, which I'm way behind RV, and RV walks into a bar. Not true. Once these 32, but before one guy, believe it all, so he was pretty impressive. And I was able to do 10,000 real followers and techniques. And I created a whole course on it, not going to sell the course. But I've created a whole course because it's a technique that I use to do it. And I found you know, people, people were interested in my message and the content created. And the biggest thing, the biggest advice I could give anybody trying to do it now social media is you have to provide value. That's the big thing I have to provide value. Now what is value? I offer educational stuff, because my target audience, the target audience, my target audience is filmmakers independent. So I create a lot of content that's aimed at that target audience, but it doesn't have to be just educational stuff. It could be you're the funny guy you write jokes every day and entertainment RV walks in about his Twitter feeds off. It's funny, it's him it's him doing stuff. So you know you provide entertainment, you prime information you provide inspiration. There's tire Twitter accounts, and social media platforms based just on inspirational quotes. And but that's values to people. So that's the first thing is not trying to sell if you try this People smell it and you got to write value. So it's basically like Gary Vaynerchuk. Gary Vaynerchuk, definitely look him up. He wrote a book called, Jab, Jab, Right Hook. And basically what that means is, you just give, give free if we do free stuff, get free stuff, free stuff away. And then you get it. That's the Jab, Jab, Jab, Jab, and then you come into the right book, which is a salesman, but you give money more jobs than you give the sales pitch. And that's the mistake a lot of people don't understand social media do is that they'll, they'll just start selling and selling buy stuff, check out my thing, crowdfunding, Oh, God, how many crowdfunding campaigns you get on a daily basis? You know, and I just went through crowdfunding my camp, my personal. And we could talk about crowdfunding later. But you have to kind of provide that value. And then we can also talk about social media.
RB Botto 15:56
Yeah, I think there's a lot that you have there. While the food out there, I think that one of the first things I want to talk about is that you mentioned was that I looked at your number of followers. Not necessarily true, what I looked at was your interaction with people, your engagement, and the content and the quality of the machine, which you brought up as well, the value that you were bringing to other people. Sometimes I think people get caught up in follower accounts and networking numbers and things like that on stage 32, very often will be this battle between creatives on Well, you have 10,000 people in your network, you don't know how to network. Well, that's not true. That's the way he this person is choosing to network, everybody chooses to network in a different way. Think about it the way you are in real life. Some of you probably have a bunch of friends, some of you have a few friends so that you probably have a ton of acquaintances. And some of you may have just a few acquaintances. There's nothing to say which is right or which is wrong, it's what's good for you. The whole idea behind branding online, is to let people know you said I let you know about me in my in my various a lot of viewing you and yours. It's letting people know who you are, what you're about what you're looking to do, what are you looking to accomplish? So there's that our scope about how do you engage people and what you're offering and the value and the idea of Jab, Jab, Right Hook? This idea that you know, you need to be a giver first. And that just because you sign up for a social media account doesn't mean you're being handed the only microphone on earth, and that you get to be a broadcaster. Most people want Twitter and a lot of social media sites, I do focus h3 to get my welcome message. And it's this whole long thing telling you about what the site's about and everything like that. Most people will respond and say, This is fantastic. Thank you, you will get the person occasionally that will come on and say that my crowdfunding campaign or Hey, how do I get a manager or ahead it's an instant ignore? Because you're basically you basically ignored every all the information that I just gave you. You're not engaging me, you're not asking questions. But as you expand on that, a lot of people feel like they don't have an entryway on social media. There is there were three entry ways on social media that everybody can do. One is be complimentary. Ours was something of you find that really interesting those podcasts really interesting. Hey, thanks, house. That's really, really cool. You know, thanks for doing that. I really appreciate it. Great stuff. It's a nice little entryway. Okay, you put your face your avatar, your handle you in front of him. The second way is to say, Hey, what did you do that? Why did you have that guest on why did you put that piece of content up? Or what? What made you so it's asking questions as the subject, what made you you know, decide to do that, ask them questions creates engagement, it creates curiosity, and it makes it about the other person. Okay. And then the third thing is just sharing content yourself. And it doesn't have to be content that you write, but if it is, or better, but it's sharing content that you think will be informative, and helpful to people who are following you or who are in your network. Those are three really easy intro to entry ways. For every introvert, it doesn't matter if you're an introvert, or if you just use social media to get you going to get the conversation going. But what a lot of people do on social media is they immediately get on and like I said, this broadcast, okay, looking at me will give me what they may now imagine tonight, if this is over. We're gonna have a little cocktail thing afterwards. You know, Don, and I'm sure a lot of you have films here. And you know, magically standing here in the crowd, and this gentleman's having a cocktail with somebody, you walk up to him behind and go, Hey, I have a movie playing Thursday night.
Alex Ferrari 19:42
That's what you know,
RB Botto 19:45
and you're completely bored and on social media be blocked up with that this goes on if you wouldn't do it here. Or, hey, I have a crowdfunding campaign. Give me $1 I'm making a film. Give me $1 no You know, if it doesn't work in the real world, it's not going to work on social media. And that's a segue into adequate with that. But I just wanted to touch on a lot of the things that that Alex said here because they will work very, very badly. It's all about bringing value to other people first, building and cultivating relationships first. And then once you gain people's trust and who you are, and an understanding when they have an understanding of who you are and what you're about, then it's okay to ask. It's like building a friendship. And I'll just say before we get to dedicate someone, this is the sort of theme I think you'll agree with is social media is a long game. short game, it's a long game, cultivating relationships, think about every relationship you've had in your life professionally personal, and how long it took to cultivate that relationship, and the value you have in those relationships. Now, it's no different on social media.
Alex Ferrari 20:54
And I'll use my relationship Barbie is a perfect example. I mean, we met on Twitter, we I love it first. It was love obviously. And I invite him on the show, we had this amazing interview that lasted like an hour and a half it was actually sold all over the place meaning that we've covered so many topics, I called it the blueprint for success in history, because we just ripped for like an hour and a half. And we could have kept home we've just stopped because it was starting to pick up. But from that point we we build we start building the relationship and and then you know a few months go by the like, Hey, why don't you come over to this station to do this Oscar special. And we sat there and talked for two and a half hours on the plane an hour and a half. Yeah, we just kept riffing and talking, but that and then our relationships are building up. We've become friends and and we you know, and I know our visa world traveler, so it's hard to get this is amazing. You guys are in luck. a hologram is a holiday Exactly. But, but we we tweet each other all the time we really do. It's It's so when I say that it sounds ridiculous. I'm a grown adult. And I'm like, he tweets me and I tweet him. It's like so ridiculous. But it's the world we live in today. You know, I was like our bi before I started this colossal, I didn't really care about social media, I had my Facebook page and I post anytime I saw something funny from the 80s I would understand or something like that it was it was just kind of like out whatever I bet. And of course I didn't see my high school friends. That would be it. It was just never, never met, never connected. But unfortunately, unfortunately, unfortunately, it is the world we live in today. And social media is such a powerful tool. And I'm a perfect example of that. But Arby's right, it is a long game. And that's a general theme for your entire career. In the film industry, it is long. For a brand new to marketing to hire a director or actor, it's all a long game, it's going to happen in a year, get out. It's not and same thing goes for branding and social media. I've been very aggressive in my marketing and in my hustle if you will. So I've been able to achieve a lot within a short amount of time. But it's obscene amount of work. I don't think anyone should do that. But it's but it's work. And it takes a long time to build these relationships and actually see any results like you know, from you know, you get traffic from Twitter, but it's not like I'm sure I don't have to say your numbers but yeah, they have 100,000 on stage 32 I'm doubting that they get 20,000 hits a day from Twitter.
RB Botto 23:37
Oh, but I put again it's a brand new part of it. So what are we looking to do we're looking to get the message of the brand out there right we're trying to share content that people care about and that you know reflects the brand and you know one thing I definitely want to hit on that you said it is work okay, but it is worthwhile work. It is silly to sit here and say I tweeted this one I'm gonna have it today and all these other things and you know, I you know it is but the the concept of social media is not silly, because here's the thing all the way at the end of the day, you guys are here for one reason, or a couple of reasons I should say you here at this battle right now to learn. But you're also hitting network. Okay, well, you could do all that online, you can do all that on social media, there is information being pumped out there. 24 seven, like I said, You analysis speed, you'll have enough content for those days, if not weeks, if not months, okay. But you also have the opportunity to engage. So maybe as a film, creative. Social media is a job I spend. As I told everybody, I preach this on stage 32 all the time. I've gotten the space even very blessed. I've got to speak about this all over the world. But I tell people, no matter where I'm talking, that is your job. I treat social media with the same respect that I actually treat honing my craft or if I'm producing a movie, the business of that movie, because it matters. It should be 50% of my job because here's the thing you could spend all day They created you guys that a lot of you have a fulfils? All right. If you don't have contacts, if you don't have relationships, to get that film out there, would you get people to the film, The crowdsource people, which we're going to talk about later on to, you know, find people who I'll give you a perfect example is, you know, talking the other night, we did a panel here. And one of the filmmakers had a film at Sundance, and he was talking about the fact that he met a producer 10 years ago, and took that producer for lunch every week, for seven years. Okay, every seven years we had, she would be willing, they became friends and everything. They build up that relationship of the vet relationship, when they couldn't connect, why they connected through social media, just to stay connected if one of them was on film, or someone who's working whatever, well, when the time came, for his feature, that when he had a feature where he needed to do some help push the buttons, and he said, Would you help me. And it was because he spent all that time curating, cultivating and treating it like a job, he said, It was my job to keep that relationship alive. She ended up producing I film that film, at Sundance this year, this year, kind of an odd mistake. And I think it is the closing film here and all the shorts on Saturday. So just goes to show you that it's a long game, that it is work, that it is a sacrifice at times. But you know, to me, if I haven't put in my time on social media, I don't need to be binge watching madman at night or binge watching for the hills on House of Cards, I'm going to spend that time if I'm watching the frickin back game. And I you know, I could sit there the social media while I'm watching the game. While I'm in the line of Starbucks, I could dip that's the beauty of it. The beauty of it is you can do it from anywhere. And there's no excuse not to do it. It's not a matter. And we're most people, a lot of people who get that, but a lot of people don't get how to do it right. And to make sure that people are responding to you, that you're responding back. If people aren't engaging you in any way you're engaging back. And then you are cultivating creating those relationships, not because right back to the first thing I just said about Alex was that when he paid me about being on his on the podcast, it really was let me see how he puts himself out there, what it what he's got out, and the information blew me away, and the amount of the guests he had moved away and the way he interacted with people, the way I said, Yeah, one freaking piece of this. But that was a you know, and then the relationship grew over time. That's the way it's done its job.
Alex Ferrari 27:33
And just to give you an example of those relationships that are so important, my film that I just did, I know that the lead actress, for eight years, I met her three months after I got to LA, we did a small little short film, we always stayed in touch, we do a few projects here and there on the web series here, little bit there. And, you know, she's not a huge star, but she's really talented. She's been on TV, she's doing all this kind of stuff, which is wonderful. And I finally decided, like, you know what I'm gonna, I'm gonna pull that trigger, I'm gonna go make a movie. And I'm not going to wait around for anybody to tell me to make a movie, I'm not gonna wait around for a budget to do it at a price that I can afford. And I'm just going to go have some fun. I call her up. And I go, Jill, if you want to make a movie, I want to put you as a star who's gonna write this stuff story about movies, she's like, all right. And I know that Jill has a tremendous amount of connections throughout the business. all her friends are known actors, who are if I showed you pictures of throw out their names, you would know them. And she go, Okay, this is our, this is our shot. So that she pulled her triggers of all those relationships over the years. And all of a sudden, we kind of put this perfect storm together, where we were able to shoot an entire movie in eight days. And it looks amazing to see. And that amazing performances from actors that would never in a million years, I had no connection to but because I nurtured that relationship, not only thinking maybe maybe one day she was a friend and we always work together, she was always wonderful, but I just decided to pull the trigger. And that's the key. Think about long if eight years, eight years and she told me it's like, you know, maybe a year but God would have said no out a year from now I'd say no. But when you asked, I was ready. And and she told me so that I wouldn't do this for anyone. I trust you. And I trust you as a director and as a as an artist, and as also a technical guy, make sure everything looks good. And it worked out but it's all about those relationships, guys. And the one thing I wanted to touch upon with social media etiquette, which is the whole thing that you were talking about is like, if it doesn't work in reality, it won't work on social media. So please have a crowdfunding campaign. Don't Don't just emails about it. Don't just say hey, here's my crowdfunding campaign. This is the way you should approach someone anyone that asked if we're nobodies, but but no Anybody you're trying to get attention from.
We'll be right back after a word from our sponsor. And now back to the show email them and go, Hey, I like what you're doing. I really liked this article you wrote, or this movie you're laying or something like that. And you you, oddly enough, it's kind of like what you do in real life. You pay them compliments, and oh, man, I love what you're doing. Keep up the good work. No, there's nothing I don't want anything from you. I'm just giving you a compliment. Anytime somebody does that, to me, I always take notice any of the followers that I have that contact me that way. I always take notice. So when and then little by little, they're like, Hey man, great stuff. So they're jabbing me they're jabbing me the finally they're like, Hey, man, after we've already started build that relationship, or even if it's something superficial, least it's something and they can look at, I just want to keep you might take a look at this trailer for my new movie. I love to hear your opinion, not a we post this on my web on your, on your website, Hey, can I be a guest on your podcast, you're not going to guys have done this routine with me. And then after I looked at the work, and I'm like, wow, this is really cool. I go into like, build my podcast, or Hey, would you like to write an article about the movie, I think it'd be beneficial to the audience, because he went about it the right way. And that's how you approach people like that, you know, I've got I just had Jim who's on the writer from writer Fight Club. I tweeted, tweeted, I tweeted him, I go, Hey, Jim, big fan. I'd love to have you on the show. And Jim's like, hey, I'd love to be on the show. I'm like, holy shit. Cut the writer, five cups are my favorite movies of all time. And we worked over the next two months to schedule because it's very busy. And I got to make sure we hit it off. Like, all because of building that relationship. I'm offering something I'm not asking him to do. Because I'm offering him my audience, I'm offering him my, whatever little spotlight I have. And because of that I provided value to him, because he has things he wants, he wants his name to get out there even more. And he has of you know, he has a course that he's trying to sell, and so on. So what I provided value to so it's again, that's that's again, the way you should do it, approach it like you would
RB Botto 32:23
Yeah, and it's a selfless approach, right? Everything we always thought about the idea of give first give second, give third, you get four, then ask fifth, that really is the way it should be on social media, the jabs, you know, arguments, the jabs are the asking of questions. You know, the courses are when you build up that relationship and you have enough social, you build up enough social currency, so to speak, that you're able to, you're able to ask those questions. By the way, this is why so many crowdfunding campaigns fail. And, you know, I know we're going to talk about crowdfunding versus crowdsourcing and what one is versus the other, and how one is involved in the other and all that. But the reality of the situation is the reason why so many crowdfunding campaigns fail is because people just want, they wanted no strategy, they launch with no connections, they want to build credibility, they launch with no social power behind them. That's a problem. Really, a sort of crowdfunding campaign source three to six months before you ever press that Launch button before you ever press that significant. That's why so many open fail, you can get into the minutiae of it as we go along. But it's the fact that matter, you said, how many people just hit you up and say, with my crowdfunding campaign happens every day, multiple times a day, and I go in, and once in a while, I'll go and I'll check and see how those campaigns are doing. And I can tell you that 99.9% of the time, they're failing, I'll even get the ones that lose my favorites that say, I have six hours to go help me reach my goal. I'm trying to reach 75,580 and I'm trying to charge 274 to get you to the goal there. But it happens all the time. The people that I've donated money to for crowdfunding campaigns are the people that have really really cultivated relationships with me over time not just because of the seats 32 but because they know my interests match up with their interest for example, okay, people if you follow my Twitter account, you'll know that certain things or like certain movies that like certain sports, I follow I pepper, my you know, film stuff with some of my personal stuff they see where I traveled to things like that. I had somebody comedy with doing a football movie about football with a football fan. And it was a whole you know, story about a kid who gets a walk so it doesn't really matter. But the point of matter is, is that this is somebody that over time have built up this relationship with me on social media. Speaking about not only his film pursuits, but about football is and you know, football fandom, so to speak, when the time came, and he said, Would you throw your weight around the idea behind this? I was like, Yes, I also had a social message to it as well. And it was, you know, had some depth to it. And I was like, Yeah, I was happy to take the message and carry that message forward. So guess what, not only did he get me, he got all my followers, he got all my people on stage. 32 he got everybody, because he had built that relationship with me because he knew about me and because he had spent man year two years building that relationship with me and then was ready to go. That's really compelling in a lot of ways. That's, that's compelling. You know, you want it to be compelling to you think about it, somebody who's approaching you, and made it personal. If they made a personal now, all of a sudden, you're engaged, you're involved. You know, just to kind of tease I guess we're going to get to the crowdfunding versus crowdsourcing. crowdfunding. I'll just thought, well, we'll jump into it a little bit. You know, crowdfunding, you guys know what it is, is the raising the money, obviously, donors and all that. crowdsourcing? Very, very simply, and I'm writing a book for full press on phone crowdsourcing that now that I'm building relationship with you guys, if I haven't come up with the goddamn thing, because it does come out that Six, five minutes, the next century, hopefully you'll die because now you're not homeless at the end. But I still intend to Yeah, it's exactly about me. But I'm on my last habit. The whole you know, everybody talks about crowdsourcing as it's, you know, it's marketing. It's this, it's that there's an element of marketing to it. But ultimately, at the end of the day, crowdsourcing is in its simplest terms, is identifying, engaging and moving in the audience. Who is your audience? Think about who you want your Who's your audience for your brand. The his brand, is people that are involved in this business filmmakers, every type of film creative out there. It also maybe on a sub level is movie fans. Okay? So who is your target audience? Who is he going to identify as his target audience, he's going to identify people in this room, people like you on Twitter, people like you on social media, people like you who are writing articles and blogs and things like that he's going to identify you, then he is going to engage you How is he going to engage you by putting quality content in front of you by asking you questions by complimenting you, by making you a part of where he is going and what he's doing. As he builds up those relationships over time. When he gets to the point where he is ready to play this program in front of you. What is he going to do? He's going to move you he's going to ask you to carry the message of what he is doing forward and at that point, because he's engaged you for so long and volume, what he's doing so you're going to sit there and say, I'm so freakin loony. I'm gonna stand up beside you and walk beside you. And by the way, I sit beside you not behind you. Okay? Do you want people to line up like this with you? Or do you want an army okay, but you create that army by identifying first engaging second, and moving in third. And that's why I also said that it wasn't so much the the follower count day, right? Because people get caught up in that then people go and buy Twitter followers they buy, don't do it. you rather have 1000 quality followers. And you know, when people in your network than 100,000, that don't give a shit about what you're doing, and that you'll never move anywhere ever. And that won't be engaged with you at all. Quality over quantity, but also,
Alex Ferrari 38:34
but anyone who sounded like you would have easily gone if I had 100,000 Twitter followers.
RB Botto 38:40
Well, you could point that out and these million programs out there figure that
Alex Ferrari 38:42
out? Yes. Yeah, they're all from Bangladesh, generally speaking. Probably not real.
RB Botto 38:49
You don't want to hire another farm. I mean, look, ultimately, the end of the day you want real you want real followers? Do you want real relationships, you want to be able to move real people you want those people look if I can engage every one of you in this room. But what I'm doing what's let's use the crowdfunding crowdsourcing book as an example if I cultivated this relationship with you or relationship with you over the next year. And then I finally say to you guys, hey, love the book is coming out. I think you're gonna find it really informative. Please let me know what you think about it. But more importantly, if you buy it, please review it. And please tell other people about it. You're probably going to be inclined to help me out mostly you will be if I've done things the right way. And guess what? Now I'm getting like I said earlier, all of your followers to because all the people that trust you now trust me, think about the power of that. And then think about why certain crowdfunding campaigns can raise $100,000 and other ones can't raise 1000. That's the reason why the ones that raise 100,000 have the planning and the plan in place to be able to when they push that button, move, an audience move a crowd of supporters. That's really what it's about. And it all begins with building your brand. And letting people know who you are, what you're about, and why you're doing what you're doing.
Alex Ferrari 40:09
And before we get into crowdfunding and crowdsourcing, I want to talk about brand and building your brand. You have to you have to ask yourself, you know, when I when I started from the football, so I asked myself, what kind of brand do I want to be, you want to I want to be kind of like a faceless brand that doesn't have a name behind it, you know, which there's nothing wrong with that. So let's say, you know, film school, you know, we know Ryan was no film school, but Ryan's not, His face is not out there. It's not that he's not that guy. So that's the kind of brand new buildings with amazing brand of exquisite, amazing brand. Um, but I decided that I wanted to associate myself with my brand. So they're interchangeable, but it'd be very difficult for me to sell anything else. But it's so ingrained within me that that is just the way I wanted to do it. Because in the back of my head, I wanted to build me up as a filmmaker, as a director, as a thought leader as an authority in the space. And that was very calculated and why I did that. So when you see any film, hustle on, on my website, it says, without story, and you've got a crazy picture of me, holding if you can bring it up, it's great, but it just got an indie film, hustle calm,
RB Botto 41:17
and find a way with this picture tells you everything you need to know about Alex, that's the other thing. But But you laugh, but it's but it's the branding. It's a perfect picture of what he's doing, in my opinion.
Alex Ferrari 41:34
So that's good branding. Alright, so that's my picture. So you can see there, I tell you what my what I'm doing, I'm showing you how to survive and thrive in the film business. And I have my name there. And then I've got that and of course, sign up for my newsletter. But that's my rant. So that perfectly interviews right it perfectly, is it encapsulates me as a person as the kind of information you're going to get. And because I am not filtered, all my content is very non filtered. very real, very raw, very in your face.
RB Botto 42:06
But you also you also want to give them that pitcher to win. It's totally true, but you show it's fun. You're not gonna be bored to death, you're not gonna
Alex Ferrari 42:15
know I mean, it's fun. It's funny, exactly. It had I had a lot of, I've had a lot of followers that I've met over the years are usually the ones that have told me like, Hey, you know, I was looking for something. But if you don't when I saw your website, and it just looked fine, you know, and I was like, wow, I guess, I guess it isn't, because I'm a lunatic. But that was a very specific brand choice. And I chose to associate myself very closely with my brand. And then Harvey has stage 32, which he's also closely identified with this brand. But RP space is not next to the logo as a general statement. And that's C, it's a very core, it's elicits a different kind of branding. But what everybody who knows that as they start to notice are
RB Botto 42:55
Why two things to that. The first thing is, the branding is you on this your, you know, your dreams, your life. It's about you. Now, when you sign up, there is a brand choice, when you sign up to stage 32, what's the first thing that happens? You get my face on your wall, and you get a welcome message from me. And immediately, the purpose of that would be the reason I made that decision to do that was a couple of there was a few reasons. One, I wanted you guys to get to know people. Okay, and what I'm about to I wanted to see right off the bat, that I am a creative, just like you so that you don't think that this is a nameless, faceless. You know, some guy came up with this idea, just a business oriented guy, and he doesn't guys preying on the boat, the weakness of the crane is as I've been, as I've heard in the past, like he's preying on creatives are afraid is on artists. They're preying on on us, you know, so I want to and then the third reason was I wanted to make it clear, because in that woga message, I say, this is a, this is a platform for you, built by you. And what do I mean by that? What I mean by that is you will need to get out what you put in. And that's true of any networking site. This whole idea that like you know, I always say to people look, when people say to me, stage 32 is amazing. It's great. And I tell people, I said, Thank you for the compliments. Fantastic, I appreciate it. But the community is what makes this site, the community is what makes the network if I didn't have these 500,000 creatives who are engaged in positive and networking and being in being engaged and sharing content and putting projects up and making posts and being active to the stage 30 Labs know that we wouldn't have a platform we'd have to show Okay, so it really that message is the branding that Whoa, message is supposed to be disarming because let's face it, and Don't tell me you're not as creative as pretty We get cynical, aren't we? All? Right. If you don't trust anything, do wheel
Alex Ferrari 45:04
makers are the toughest audience. Well, no, no. No, I'm with you. The filmmaking filmmakers are the most cynical, hard, like hard to crack. They're not like the the stay at home mom wants to start knitting and wants to go on. site that sells things that you make on Ravelry. on social media, they're like you like, Oh, wow. Yeah, this is great. I'll buy that How much? 500 bucks, I'm 100 Sure. filmmakers have been abused so much it there's so cynical. So I think we need to have, and that's the other thing we can talk about the authenticity. Yeah. And that's what both of us are, we're authentic with who we are with our brand is, I'm not posing as somebody else. I'm not pretending to be anything else. Anything I say, is because I've walked the walk, I talk the talk, and I walk the walk. So if I say a company of 20 years doing this, this is why I've been able to this is why I'm giving you the advice I gave you, I'm not going to give you personal advice on how to write a screenplay that wins an Oscar because guess what, I haven't done that. But I will tell you how to finish a movie, get finished in post deliverable setup, and get it out to a distributor because I do have experience with that. And I have an IMDb credits to prove it. So that's the authenticity of your brands, and you have to be authentic with who you are. And I had a lot of friends of mine was like, man, I want to kind of start up, you know, and I've networked with a bunch of these other guys who have similar sites to us. And, you know, a lot of them I love them to death. But they, they were like, man, I don't have 20 years of experience. And like, they just just like, Hey, I'm, this is your brand. I'm just like, you guys, I'm figuring it out along the way, I'm gonna go and make a movie and see what I'm gonna do. And that's your brand. Just Just own who you are, and stop trying to be someone you're not. Because this is no problem, figure it out really, really quick, and you will not get
RB Botto 47:06
well. And the other thing about being authentic is that you're not going to want to just be a one trick pony, right? You know, like, in other words, or have one project in you. No matter what you do. In life, you have to deliver on your word. And on online, you may be able to hire somebody, people in the real world, quote, unquote, real world. But online, it's impossible to hide, because everything is out there for everybody to see the beauty of crowdfunding a movie. And you know, Alice just crowdfunded one. And he did it because he had these relationships, you were able to raise that money. But the beauty of raising a crowdfunding campaign, for example, or doing above and beyond me to be successful in it, the first crowdfunding campaign that you ever do, you're probably going to get more money in based on the project or the subject matter. And you're going to be curating those relationships with people that you know are going to be interested in that subject matter, then you are in you, because you're an unknown commodity, by the liver, on the movie, deliver on the promise, deliver on your Yes, or whatever you giving out, deliver on all this stuff. And guess what, it doesn't matter what the next film is, it doesn't matter what the subject matter is, you can go around source a whole new crowd, for that subject matter. But the people that followed you before are going to follow you again, and not even care what the subject matter is perfect example of this. I have a filmmaker friend who raised about 50, when his first film was a short, and it was a short about Native Indians, and you went to all the proper channels that you could think of that he felt would be interested in this kind of film, raised money, made a tremendous film, kept his word on everything, kept people interested and involved and engaged way after he had closed the money through the distribution of repos through the distribution process through everything. Okay. His second film was a feature film, and it was a musical. And I mean, it could not the subject matter could have been further away. So he had a whole new crowd to go crowdsource, which is started six months before a second campaign which all the people that might be interested in musicals or people who, theater vehicles, etc, etc, etc. But he also went back to the first the first crowd, the crowd that had followed him before. They didn't even want to know. They will like your film. That film was so great. You're So Amazing. We're in. Doesn't matter what it is. We're a he is successfully crowdsource seventh IV crowd funded and crowd sourced seven films. And his crowd fund each one of them was a bigger raise and his crowd was everywhere. They only follow what the donations so they show up at the festivals, they fill the theatres, he wins audience awards, because the people are there. He goes from city to city to city to get his pack because they all know him. And it all started
Alex Ferrari 50:00
And the big thing to add to that is, when you're building your brand, a lot of people when they go crowdfunding, they'll start prospecting Ruby. So like, I'm gonna make a horror movie, and I'm gonna call crowd from this, what will you, they don't think about longevity, they just think about the movie. So if you craft them the movie, you start building an audience just on this movie. If you go to a musical, it's going to be really difficult to take those people with you sometimes. So you got to crowd for that you got to build an audience around you as a production company, you as an artist. And that's how you can continue to wrap it because they follow him. They don't follow the project, they follow him. And that's a mistake a lot of filmmakers make do, they just stick on genre, they'll just stick on the story of the movie. And they don't think of the longevity don't think four or five steps ahead. They're just looking at
RB Botto 50:48
what adds the beauty or like I was saying, you'll be able to follow up no matter what number you're in, you'll always have a new one, no matter what your subject matter is always a new crowd to source. By the way, you'll be able to bring the old crowd with you from project to project projects. They're not just fans of your films, but not fans of all that the film defensive view. And that's ultimately what you're trying to build here is fans of you and who you are and what you're about. And if you're delivering all the way through all the time, you'll have that you'll have people like I said, I saw that earlier, the old lineup, you know, right alongside that already will grow and grow and grow and grow. And it's like, you know, it's like the old I always tell people that crowdsourcing is like the old champion commercial, you know, they talk to people and they go to commercial YouTube, but I probably just aged myself by about very much. But you get my you get my point, by the way, you know, anybody have any questions? Because we're probably for hours. So please, yeah, any questions, any questions, so forth? Anything? Anyone, you. You guys talk about how you're offering value to what you guys are sort of attached to these sites for patient platforms? If you're creative content value offer, and I gotta jump in here real quick. I want to I want to clarify something. We're both Raiders. Okay. So yes, I'm tethered to that platform. Right. But if you look at my social media feed, very rarely, I mean, yeah, I put up some posts or states or to some of the posts that would have been staged three to people, filmmakers that write on our blog and film creators around what, where I want to share their content. But most of the content I put up is content that interests me, if you go on stage 32 on every single Friday, I put up a big old Arby's weekend blog, the articles that are in that weekend blog, yes, it has some today has a site, you know, like lounge discussions and stuff like that. But you'll see industry and entertainment, news, videos and tips, those three sections, those are all articles that I read during the week that I save in a Word document, things that interest me that I think will interest the community, they don't benefit states 32, none of those links go to state they're on stage, but they link externally, okay, those are, those are things that I'm giving to the community, because I think that they will enjoy. So it's my way of showing what I like to my own community. My Twitter feed is that all day long, and you know, he posts a lot of external stuff and a lot of stuff, you know, it used to be so that I just wanted to get that out. Now maybe I'm only used up so.
Alex Ferrari 53:31
But also, don't don't forget to like you were saying like we were stuck with stuff, but we are attached to our brands, and they are educational brands, and community brands as well. But, you know, we're just two examples. Here are guys who build multi million dollar businesses off of YouTube, just putting out content that their audience lives, whether it be playing video games, whether it be fun videos, I mean, these guys, I know a lot of these guys that they make 10s of 1000s of dollars a month, just purely because they're creating content. I know one good one guys, that has probably about four or 5 million followers. And they done a web series that got them network deals that now they're doing, which I'm working with them on a project for whom and they have it all built and built and built it took took them 10 years to do. But it's like I said it's a long game. But there's other avenues you just have to find the platform that you want to go out there and build the content around it. So we're just talking about Twitter and websites and things like that. But there's multiple platforms out there. And again, it's about what who your audience is maybe you're an artist that just wants to draw you make up I mean, I know a bunch of artists that just draw Funny Cartoons or make amazing pieces of art and they sell them on Etsy as well. I'm sorry, but they they sell on Etsy they provide that value to there's one guy on Instagram that did He did a project movie quote, for 365 days in a row. And every day he draw a new like a cool picture of like, you know, Freddie, you know, from pretty Cooper saying something or something like that. And we just go on and I will follow him because every day I would come in and like, hey, he was providing value up, and then he would sell on T shirts and things like that. But that's what I'm talking about. So it's not just what we're talking about, there's multiple ways you can create content that
RB Botto 55:26
well and think to yourself, right? I mean, really, before you send the next week, or the next Facebook, post the next posting stage lead to your next picture on Instagram or anything like that. If you sell, who am I? Like, you know, what is my brand? Who am I? Okay, what am I looking to accomplish? Really? What am I looking to accomplish? What do I want my brand to be? What How do I want people to see me? Who is my ideal follower? Who is the ideal person that I want in my network? That is our? That's right. You know, who's the ideal person besides me? Who's the ideal person that you want in your network? Okay, and then go out and pursue that? How, what's the approach to get to those people? What's the approach that is going to get me those followers and get that brand flowing, okay, the people on YouTube that have these millions, and millions and millions of followers, if you look at them, as I've looked at some of the tutorial videos, for example, the thing that they do eautifully beautifully, is they, they know what their brand is, and they stay on brand. And they don't just stay on brand with the YouTube video, they stay on brand with all their marketing on social media, who they're targeting, how they're targeting, who they're engaging, our spoke earlier about being able to go to the visibility of social media as well. So I'm saying like, Look, I was a non believer, I become, you know, a true believer, you can get to any one at a time. anyone at any time, it's just about approach the difference between him being able to engage, you know, legit moves, or you know, as opposed to somebody else a strictly approach. While it's two days this approach, and if you have the right approaches, you need that first, to get them curious enough. It's what you're putting out there and how you're presenting the brand, because I'm sure he probably went to go look at your feature, store everything that you did, and said, Okay, this is the kid, right? Think about that. What am I putting forward? What am I putting out there? Who is my ideal verse, who's my ideal follower? How do I engage that person? How do I get to that person? That's really what you want to be thinking about all the time.
Alex Ferrari 57:41
And I wanted to talk a little bit about crowd funding, because I just went through the hell that is a feature film, and it was brutal. One of the most painful things that
RB Botto 57:52
I've gone through breech birth,
Alex Ferrari 57:54
oh, my God is just, and I have an audience and have all this kind of stuff. But it's just like this nerve wracking. 30 days, like you launch when I launched that, I didn't launch as big as I wanted to. So I literally went away for five days. And I went back into my cave, and I'm like, Oh, my God, you know, and I was more public about it, because I have my, you know, everything. I've been talking about it for a month on my podcast, and I've always been, and then I'm like, yeah, I'm gonna grow. I'm gonna show you guys how to crowdfund. And it launches and it launches, okay, but it doesn't launch as big as I wanted it to launch. And I'm like, Oh, my God. So I literally went back into I literally have a turtle just went back into the shell, until I finally like, had an intervention from my mastermind group. And I can talk about a mastermind group afterwards, but, and all my guys are like, dude, you're like, the marketing? What's wrong with you get out there. I haven't heard the thing about this thing in five days. And then finally, I did, yeah, yeah, yeah, that just started pummeling. Maybe social media. But with content and how I approached it was not like, hey, check out my ID check out my crowdfunding campaign and check out my profile. I said, Hey, come along for the ride. And I'll show you how I come along for the ride. And I'll show you how to make a micro budget feature film, because that's my audience. My audience are filmmakers. So that's how I approached it. So all my messaging was that I rarely ever said, donate or contribute. I said, come along for the ride. By the way, here's some cool videos. Have you already started shooting? Here's some cool videos that we made. Here's some funny stuff. So I was already providing value. I just had to kind of, yeah, that's shook it off. And then I got back into it. But the biggest lessons I learned in crowdfunding were that, first of all, I'm going to say 60 to 70%. In my case, where people I knew were personal friends, or connections to somebody that was into business in the NFL, so friends of the actresses.
We'll be right back after a word from our sponsor. And now back to the show. Go ahead. Do it right here now. RB. So 60 to 70% are going to be people, you know, which was shocking. I have people from high school. Wow, because they've been on Facebook, and they want to be part of the excitement. The other 30% for followers of people who I, you know, built up over the course of, you know, the last year, and then there was a few probably, I press a very small percentage of people who just kind of like moving down there, they're rarely didn't find much of that. And also the kind of movie I was doing. It's a drama it, it doesn't have any big stars in its genre. So it's a little harder to raise money for that kind of thing. I was making like kind of theory, which if nobody has seen come theory, everyone should look up configuring. And their entire marketing campaign was really it was a little short film from Denmark, Sweden. Some do, like Sweden, put out this like 30 minute 80s omaze, which is the most ridiculous, I think it was like they had to go back in time with for to kill Hitler. While this 80s action, my advice to him was like, it's just brilliant, the brilliant little piece, he's made millions off his short sleeve, millions. I've seen it on network television. And he crowdfunded like, 120 grand, because he went after his audience, which were probably guys like us, haters, him obviously. But like, at the doozy is the guys who like the 80s. And like the action movies, and like those kinds of things, but you should study their, their whole marketing campaign. And it was it was it was actually very, very common theory, kind of like Kung Fu. And then, okay. If you are like, you're just having coffee, or Ruby and just having coffee, there's no other company out there. But that was my experience with crowdfunding. And I was able to raise over $50,000, which was good. I got a little bit over $50,000. And that's all I was going after, I wasn't going after big number, I wasn't foolish enough to go, Hey, I'm gonna raise 75 grand, I just said, Look, I'm just gonna raise this. And, and I have other monies that this is what I want to raise. And I did a little bit of crowdsourcing with that. And a lot of people know about the movie now purely because of all the marketing and the push. I just got back from the campaign. And now because I continue to put out content about the movie through my, my network, people already started, like, I can't wait to see it. I can't wait to do this. And then I'm like, Hey, I just finished the Edit. They're like, How'd you do that? Like, what camera? You use it? How did you do that? How many people are your crew? How'd you get these actors? I started engaging with them. And you know, this was all part of my mastery. When I started, the film was like, when I started with him, wasn't like, I'm going to, I'm going to build this audience up, and then I'm going to crowdsource with them and make a movie. I have no idea when, and maybe how, but it worked out. But it was very strategic on how I wanted to kind of build my audience. So eventually, this audience would be able to not only hopefully support me financially, but also would be able to support my creative endeavors. I give them art, they give me something to survive and to make the art and what a wonderful exchange that is. And if we as artists do that, that'd be great. And later, we could talk about the 1000 true fans, which I think would be a great thing. This Yes. Six months is active. You have no buddy, you have nothing six months, if not a year. I'm not kidding. You just unless you're raising the $1,000. It also depends on what you're trying to do and what kind of movie
RB Botto 1:04:21
you mean, like a web series or a little series, like 10 minutes.
Alex Ferrari 1:04:27
Oh, you mean like to try to prove a concept to try to raise the rest of the money? Yeah. You couldn't do contract doing that. But
RB Botto 1:04:35
at all. I just want my TCP for what you're doing. Yeah. Yeah, sure, sure. No, I was saying
Alex Ferrari 1:04:47
that you're asking two different questions to you're asking questions. There's about creating, it's about creating a pitch video or a proof of concept video to try to get money to make a margin. That's one thing. If you're going to try to crowdfund create pitch video, you can shoot some stuff, you can shoot a scene or two are created in the pitch video. Pitch video should be no more than two to three minutes bonds was like, two minutes and 40 seconds. The pitch video is everything. The pitch video is absolutely everything. I mean, it literally without the pitch video. That's what that's that's the window to your project, right? Because if you don't have that you can start.
RB Botto 1:05:27
Yeah, but no, no, no, no, no. Look, I you know, I literally have a few chapters on this in the crowd sourcing book, because it's that important. Absolutely true three to six months ahead, you know, depending on what you look at the race three to six months before you ever hit that Launch button. And what are you doing during those three to six months, you're identifying you're engaging your audience, there are five, I think, case studies in this book, every one of them has something in common. And that is the fact that the whole time, and not all of them raised crowdfunding, some of them raised conditional on day, it didn't matter. They spent three to six months, identifying and engaging people in ways not only, you know, in ways as far as just about the subject matter about why the film was important, which by the way, a pitch video should have a little bit of that as well why this film is important to you why you're gonna get a lot of you. But they spent that time asking them questions. What we literally do see in this book, crowdsourcing character names, what would you name this character? We're going to do a contest this week. Okay. It's all their followers winning no contest this week, you know, what would you do? Our character has, you know, I don't know, had a burden of some sort. Has anybody ever experienced this habit? Has anybody ever gone through that? Is these four questions and this crowdsourcing is this, let me show you two pages of the script to show you what this character goes through is this authentic? engagement, engagement, engagement, going to locations and or going online and saying, hey, there's a key scene in this movie that takes place in a bar, and there needs to be a live band, and we don't have money to pay for a van. And we can't we don't know anyone that owns a bar, who would be willing to be put who, you know, we willing to put up their bar for nothing, and we'll get good credit. This is what they spend the three to six months doing. Yeah. And guess what? People love to come forward. And guess what? When you get that bar, you get everybody that goes to that bar, and you get everybody? And oh, by the way, can you fill the bar with your extras, with people that come to the box, we need extras, this is what they spend three to six months doing? While they're doing that while they're building that audience. And while they're building all that social credibility, okay, they are going to their family and friends. And I'm glad Alex brought up the fact that about 70% of his money came from family and friends because this is vitally important. Once you hit that Launch button, when you're ready, you never go to your crowd. in week one. You go to your friends and family. Okay, and here's why. The other thing that Alex mentioned, I want to tap into that for a second tip, he raised $15,000 because that's what he felt like he needed to raise one of the biggest reasons why crowdfunding campaigns fail outside of the fact that people don't identify and engage an audience is because they set their goal their budget too high. They set too high of a goal without real realistic they think they need more money than they really need or they want to be you know, they need $10,000 in the budget they want to raise 30 is the one day themselves 20 you know, are you raising so much money that people send me scripts and I'll look at their campaign and I'm liking the movie to me for five and then maybe the reason 20 a week is something that idea and they'll smell it and they'll smell it? Yeah, it's a smaller from a mile away. Okay. People are spending their time identifying engaging the audience, they're going to their family and friends and they're saying okay, when I push the button, please be ready. Not only they push the button on the Friends and Family Plot that's helping them. You get day one, you get day two, you get day three the first week, while two reasons. First of all, if you raise 25% of your total raise in the first seven days of a crowdfunding campaign, you have an 86% chance of reasonable money. If you raise 35% of your overall raise in the first seven days you have a 97% chance of reasonable your money. So two incentives there one keep your budget real to make sure that you have your friends and family supporting you for 35% of that budget. If you do not do not first of all it does not personally launch on you as you know as you know there's not a press that button. Okay. Once you get past week, one Then you can your crowd, then you go to your crowd and you say, Yes, I'll get to you once and then you get to your crowd and you say, now you come in. Okay? Now you come in behind this. If you get in that 35% Mark, if you have spent your years three to six months identifying, engaging that audience, you will have a successful campaign. When you sit there and you say, no social media, you know, move, you know, you're starting, think about starting, like, think about a lawn job. Starting from the dead stop, you know what I mean? Instead of a running start. You want that Running Start, okay? Because here's the other part is it's a very competitive field now, right? It's a very competitive momentum is the key to a crowdfunding campaign. The reason why you want people going 1234567 in that first day, is so that people see that there's momentum, so people that do stumble upon the campaign, when you get those who don't see the momentum, or when you go to move your crowd, they sit there and they go, Oh, shit, this thing really does have legs on and it's gonna, it's gonna happen. Amen. And I'm behind it. Everything that she said over those three to six months is true. Okay, she's got this following. This is what happened, and she's going to take us all with it. That's what you want. When you're in the early stages, it's really unique contribution for the newer age. As we all are wondering, like, here, here as you can as much money as you can. A bunch of small contribution Oh, no, no, no, no, doesn't matter. Looks like it's like doing like an image of the, the, like those those walks where you've let the dollar per mile or dimes, yeah. And you go out and you ask people like, what are you willing to give before you go and walk? Right? That's exactly what you want to do. What are you willing to give? Mom? Dad? What do you want to give? Okay, they're willing to give 500? Okay, great. What are you willing to give 20 now you have a sort of a ledger of what people are willing to give, that allows you to say you given day one you get the data because we you know, one is you don't want to turn on the friends and family thing. Like let's say in your friends and family, we are expecting $5,000 total. Okay? You don't want those 5000 $5,000 in day one, because also the day 2345 there's nothing do you get in front of the crowd, they go Oh, shut down. So maybe the rich uncle gave him 500. Right? You know, I mean, this thing's not going anywhere. You want to say 500 a year, five months, a year, five a year. And then all of a sudden, maybe the last couple days that 750 1012? You know what I'm saying? So it looks like you got one. But if you know ahead of time, it's just an honest question. What are you willing to give? Like, what do you what would you be willing to donate to this get, you know, to the cause, so to speak.
Alex Ferrari 1:13:02
The thing is, a lot of times people say that, you know, you go into a crowdfunding campaign, like, oh, there's five donations, and there's $10,000 that's kind of fishy. So I get what you're saying, like, should I have a bunch of little ones, or have a big one, you don't have to really control with that. So you do what you can, like eat, like you say, grab as much grab as much money as you can, and spread it out over that time for your friends and your family. And it is what it is, like I you know, that's why I went back into my shell after the first two, three days, because I was like, I had a bunch of had a couple big chunks in, I'm like, man, I only got like 15 or 20 people that donated, you know, I don't even know what that was, like it was that four grand or something like that, which was nice three grand for that, but I was expecting a lot more and so on. And, and then by the end of it, I had 120 donation, like different people. So I had a lot of $5 $10. And that's where all my followers came in, you know, students, I had students that have one student who gave me $25 a week to she's like, I'm gonna get paid in a week, and I'll give you another donation. And she hit me up with $25 again, and that like touched me like you have no idea like why she's a filmmaker tried it out on her own campaign. But because of all the content and all the all the data that's provided her she felt that she needed to do that.
RB Botto 1:14:19
So you want to champion Yes. Want to champion by putting out all the information you're putting out there all the time. And that's it.
Yeah. That's when your whole network is all filmmakers. How do you make money? How do you like say, for example, you want to do a project and it's about other things other than the industry or whatever, whatever. How do you what techniques do you use to target your audience to bring those people in that are not filmmakers, but people who might like whatever that thing is?
Alex Ferrari 1:14:52
Well, I mean, perfect example is, let's say I'm going to make a movie about I always use this example but of the future. I'm gonna make a vegan chef movie maybe about our main characters of the show. So who do I go after in that market? Well, I go, I'm not, obviously, the carnival index. But you know, you go after, obviously, it's vegetarians, organic movement, slow cooking, the people who like to do slow cooking, the cooking crowd, which is huge, all that kind of stuff, and you start eating those people through those accounts, those social media, Facebook groups are huge. If they have full groups that have 10s of 1000s, sometimes hundreds of 1000s of people who are your audience, we could easily just post and go, Hey, check out No, don't say, hey, check out my coffin can be a little more greater than that. But if it's a big check, I start creating recipes. And like, hey, we'll go home, this is like this guy. And then really soft, you know, maybe just start getting in there, provide value and then go eight guys, by the way, after two or three months of you providing all these recipes, or articles about health or whatever, and people keep seeing you guys, I'm making a movie out of the chat. And everyone's gonna know what how much do you need it, they just write you a check. But that's how that's that's what we do and and attack us understand who your audience is. And once you understand what your audience is just hold where they hang out.
So that you guys spend like three to six months hanging out with
Alex Ferrari 1:16:25
building those relationships. This is work is a lot of work.
RB Botto 1:16:29
It's a lot of work. And by the way, we've only sled totally right. But by the way, we Oh, we also haven't spoken about what we keep talking about a social media. Let's I know we're here. That's what we're here to talk about. But chat boards, and full tree chat boards, offline efforts, or they're vegan, you know, the things in your neighbor groups in restaurants, by the way, hey, I'm going to film this thing is going to be a scene in the movie, can I come here? Will you tell your customers about it? There are a billion ways you're only limited by your creativity and your imagination, I will repeat that you're only limited by your creativity or imagination. There are a million ways to get out there through social media and offline. Sure, if you reach 25% of your goal, and you'll see various reports on this, but by percentages are right around the median, you'll have in the first seven days, you'll have about an 86 87% chance of reaching your overall goal. If you hit 35% for seven days, that goes up to about 9697. Yeah, important is to leverage the gap on that. Once you get that. Well, we every day we do with friends and family every day. Let's see right there. What was that? What was the question? Oh, that was Oh, yeah, yeah,
Alex Ferrari 1:18:16
how can we leverage once we get to that point, maybe six 8000 leverage set for that gap?
RB Botto 1:18:21
Well, and what ends up happening is that you'll ultimately inevitably hit a wall in a crowdfunding campaign. Almost every single one of them hits a wall about week three occurs at some of the best campaigns. Okay, here's the thing. Some of the best campaigns keep three lists. And this is why this isn't the book as well, as far as an actual case study that I thought was very fascinating. But I've heard other people do it certain ways, different ways. But this one I thought was really nice for people that had done this before. Through the laws, they actually had been through a couple of failed campaigns need to do about doing the friends and family they carry away but they didn't carry the rest of it. They carry the crowd. What they did was for one of their one of their films, and it was a film about hiking. It's more it's a movie called mile, mile and a half to documentary you guys seen it? I saw a couple nodding, nodding, nodding. A friend of mine produced that film. It's a case study in my book, they raised $85,000 for a documentary about freaking hiking the john Muir Trail. Does it sound belly does it but here's the thing. They were filmmakers. They were sending it to four cinematographers in the sound. So immediately, you have the filmmakers that are going to be engaged by this because what they wanted to do was they wanted to film the john Muir Trail in unity as it's never been the entire thing. All the ecosystems, various ecosystems, as it's never been filmed and recorded before. That's interesting. They wanted to hikers, the helmets, they ask people, give us listen, will you be on the trail for 30 days now hikers give us recipes that we could put into a hiking club. They went chef's, this recipes that we get a went to everybody. Hey, this film by the way, when they bid on crowdsourcing and crowdfunding and crowdsourcing this film, this one not only went way past their goal that was the only film ever at the LA Film Festival to sell it to did open up a second theater because the whole crowd came weapon, okay? But here's what they did to the crowdfunding campaign. Friends and family be one. The crowd, the to the hiking crowd, the filmmaker crowd all that. Okay, they knew they would hit open roll in week three. So they save the bloggers, THE journalists, all the people that, you know, wanted to write about this thing that were really at the chalkboard people really weak for. So when they hit that wall, but it's only got to the end to be three, when they got to the beginning of week three, they were almost at 70% of the goal. And at the end of the week, three to up like maybe 75 76%, because they had that low, and then they push the bottom and on those other people well over, and they bought that entire car with them, by the way, so successful, the Rei and some of these other hiking, gave them the equipment to go. I mean, this is crowdsourcing, this is being creative. That's how that's how you bridge the gap as far as crowdfunding. So
Alex Ferrari 1:21:20
I'm going to give you guys an example of an old school way of doing this before social media in 2005 of yours shortly. And that sort of filled with me for about eight grand and actually, we had no stars shot in West Palm Beach for chatted on many TV, eds, 108. Were all the old folks. And I did have about 100 visual effects in that little movie. And I said to myself, well, how am I going to sell this movie? And I was like, well, no one's gonna pay money to buy this. Nope, nobody in the real world out there. It's not gonna be in the best spot. So I said, Well, what am I going to do? What can I sell this to what a filmmakers might be interested in how I was able to do a movie for eight grand with 100 visual effects shots and created the looks that I was able to create the production quality, I'll do great. With movies, I created this. Three and a half hour school, printed my own DVD. And during all this time, I had been, unbeknownst to me crowdsourcing, because I was hitting every message or on the internet, if you're 2005 online, and you even remotely looked at a message board anywhere in the world that was in English. And sometimes you saw my mug, and this project clips from the project of pre production. So I had so much built up when I launched that DVD for sale. All I remember I still remember to this day was that pay pal? Did coming in my emails. We sold 250 copies at 20 bucks a pop. In the first day that we had, you know, my partner, I had no idea we were like, you know how to mail these where we do, I ended up selling over 5000 copies. And made over $90,000 over the $40,000 with no stars. I'm still selling it today. Not on DVD, you know, I sell it on a digital platform and packaged it with a whole bunch of other short films and so on. But my point is that I was able to do this all by crowdsourcing by going after my market. And believe me, there was no master plan behind this. I was doing it instinctively. I just like Well, there's people with people where people are and I just kind of did it. And I also used my space. A little bit of my space shoe joint space. geo cities was was kicking. Yeah, I love him with coffee, sir. But anyway. But uh, but it works. And I was able to that taught me the power of what crowdsourcing was before crowdsourcing became a thing. So when I came back into this world again, I learned those from those lessons and just use all these amazing tools now that that are available that that didn't have back then. So it's definitely possible. But don't just look at social media like Harvey was saying, message boards are super powerful. message boards, chat rooms, all those kind of things and are getting articles written on certain blogs, connected with bloggers connected with YouTube. There's so many ways to get your name out there get to project
RB Botto 1:24:39
and get over the line. I mean, get out there in that you don't get out there in the real world. I mean, another another example of this in the book is a case study. Anyway, doesn't matter. They use they needed to film around Connecticut. And they were filming some of the scenes were at some major Political sort of lack of government Lamaze, you know, you had to get permits you had to get this. Well, they ended up doing trade. They ended up doing a deal with the governor's office, where they said we will show the film about City Hall because it features the city. If you will give us these locations, you crowdsource anything, okay? But it's about building relationships is about gain. You know, we talked about this very, very much when it comes to we have all these different talks noisy, which we do. You know, whether it's social media, whether it's, you know, networking online, offline, whether it's crowdsourcing, crowdfunding, and everything like that, it comes down brandy back there, my friend, Brandy, wave, brandy. Red is a stage three team member, she has heard me speak for forgiving five years on this, but this word champions, it's about winning champions, it really, really is about winning champions of who you are, what you're looking to accomplish, what you're looking to do as a filmmaker, that really ends up winning everything and winning people winning people into your across the way people that want to move along with you. So how do you gain those champions? And it's all the ways that we talked about tonight. It's all the ways that you know, it's the reason why, you know, your friends and family wants to play the champions with you, right? You build those relationships. It's the reason why a mile a mile and a half the people that make this film that are first legitimately said, these filmmakers told me this, they will like we put that number up there at $5,000. We've never crowdfunded AV before, we put the number up there and said, We are going to get torched. You know, we raised 5000 will be lucky. You know, in an equity five open, I think they raised that it was over on the revenue. Okay, because they won champions, because they spent three to six months, even though they even though they split the three to six months, they did two media tours. But he really did do it the right way. They had champions people have followed that they want to see who they're killing them, that like you guys need to leave your family and friends again for another six weeks and go do something else go hike Everest. Like literally, these people are killing them to go do something else. Because they love what they did and how they did it. And the fact that they stayed to this day, I still get emails. Like they send out a newsletter every month, just saying, Hey, you know, this is what we're up to. Now, here's pictures of our kids, the kids pictures of the dogs and people who love it. They love it, because they're champions, the champions of it, they love it. So you know, it just goes to show you that the Hauer of you. And what you have the tools you have at your disposal, which is you and your passion and your love and your wants and your needs. And everything that makes you human is going to make you attractive to other people if you handle yourself. Well.
monopolizing? Yeah. Yes, where you guys would move a little funny side of things that that should be talked about. So
Alex Ferrari 1:28:14
actually, what kind of distribution you're talking about
shows and building an audience. How do you like how do you say you have content content? out there? Well, short film isn't a short film is a feature of the web servers, specifically, coffee websites. Yeah.
Alex Ferrari 1:28:41
So web series are really interesting, because they're not as the competition is a lot harder for them than they used to be before it was much more novel. Now everybody has a web series, it's a little harder to sell. What I would do is, is, instead of packaging as a web series, I would package it as a, just as a series or something like that. Don't use the word web series. This is just me personally talking. Because when I hear web series on, because I rarely see a good web series, it's rare to see. So if you just call it a series, you know, you know, nephrology, whatever you want to call it, but maybe that will help selling it is going to be interesting, because if you have a series, if you're going to try to package it to sell it to an audience number, are you going to talk Are you talking about YouTube? Because then there's that route of going about it? It also depends on what kind of series it is. There's a lot of variables into it, I could tell you what i what i would do for feature, and maybe that'll help you a little bit for a feature film. you target your audience, I started talking about self distribution, or trying to go after a traditional distributor.
Well, I just kind of like, I mean, he specifically would love to get an actual distributor, actually a platform that But I mean self distribution is
Alex Ferrari 1:30:05
We'll be right back after a word from our sponsor. And now back to the show. So, again, with self distribution and, and I'm a big proponent of self distribution. But there's a lot of ignorant information out there in regards to self distribution. If you have $100,000 budget, and you're going to self distribute, you better have such an amazing marketing plan, and social media plan to be able to recoup that money. If you have a $5,000 $10,000 feature, the different plan altogether, I would say anyone can work coming to me and I've had a lot of clients come to me and be like, hey, we've got a half a million dollar movie, we're going to self distribute it like, so you're not making money. Because it's, I mean, I can count on one hand, how many movies have made money self distributing, it's really difficult, like a lot of money. And a lot of the most of the documentaries on documentaries do very well with some distribution much more so because of its cause. And the kind of subject matter. But for narrative films to make a lot of money self distribution is, is a little difficult. But that's where the plan comes in. So I'll use the I'll use me as an example, I have a low budget or micro budget film that I've created. And my distribution plan is, I'm going to submit to Sundance and everybody else, we're going to throw that lottery ticket in, and we're going to submit to some of the big festivals, and we're going to see how they treat us. And but we're also strategic about what our subject matter is, and what kind of festival is going to be open to us. You always submit this on us because I think everyone by law has to submit. I think it's by law, right? I think that's a fact. And you have to send it to Sunday. But so we'll see how that process goes. And then based on what that reaction is, if we get picked up by a South by Southwest road trip back or I tell you right, or you know already these top two your vegetables, that would lead us down one path. If we get no love from any of the big festivals, and then we start going for the second tier festivals. And we get some love from them that will determine another path. So because our budget was so low, we've crowdsource I have my own audience. The actors are all involved have audiences, self distribution makes sense because they're to make money and recruit is easier, I was able to make 90 grand, over 90 grand selling the short film that cost me eight grand. You see, and I self distributed that through DVDs. Now there's amazon video on derivative video direct, there's indieflix, there's Vimeo, there's I mean, I have just so much content on the website, in regards to multiple revenue streams on how to create money for your movies. But it's about keeping that budget low. So if you start going 50 100, grand, self distribution, huge challenge challenging, not impossible, challenging, you really have to understand the marketplace in order to do that. So your web series is going to be interesting, I, I don't know, I don't know, because I've not seen a web series sold. Unless you sell it to crackle, or, or someone like that, that's gonna buy it outright, to make it in the budget is, but if it's over five or 10 grand, would be really difficult to be able to monetize that unless you already have an audience built up where you just throw it into the pipeline and sell it to that
RB Botto 1:33:32
audience. Yeah, and I think that that's a good segue into what do you want to get out of it? Right. So I think that at the end of the day, I think that you know, we I CEOs, obviously so you people get very caught up in I want to make money with a shorter web series. And you're here for the pound Friday night. You know, you heard a bunch of the panelists talk about the fact that there's very little money insurance, there are the exceptions to the rule. But you know, it's a tough field. So the reality of the situation, really, in my opinion is if you're looking, if you're looking to make money, it's going to be more of a challenge. If you're looking at for it, if you're looking at your web series are your short as proof of concept to either a bigger film, you know, feature or television show, or to your talents, proof of concept of your town, branding yourself and proven talents, what you can do what you can accomplish, then the reality is to me, get the hell out there. Get it seen. Use every avenue. Don't worry about the nickels and the dimes because, again, as we've talked about a million times tonight. This is a long game, not just networking, being a creative in general. It's a long game, and the long game starts with recommend. How do you get recognition when we're shooting phone? I mean we're shooting up movies on these phones now. Okay, in the barrier of entry gets lower, the cost of entry gets lower, more and more people are jumping over the barrier. Because there's more and more noise. Well, how do you stand out from the noise? Well, I've seen some really, really good filmmakers mute themselves, because they don't want to get their films out there because they feel like if you put it up on Vimeo, they may not get into film festival x will look at you spending a shitload of money trying to get into film festival, XYZ and bubble way, okay? You may be short selling yourself, and you may be closing the window on yourself, you just spent all this time putting yourself in a position to make a film, maybe raising money, maybe putting things into play that you know, calling in favors, that you're not gonna be able to call it again. And you're killing yourself because nobody is seeing the damn thing. Get the damn thing See, get it in front of the people. And by the way, as I mentioned this Friday night, but I'll mention that again, if you weren't here. There are so many snake oil salesmen online. Okay, with you know, when it comes to phone contests, web series contests, people that swear they take you here, there and everything else. Know what you're spending money on, know what you're entering know what you're getting yourself into. You got to enter a contest that doesn't give you access and opportunity. You got to enter a contest that does not If you win, puts you in front of people that can move the needle on your career. Okay, get your eating schedule in front of people get you managers, agents, producers looking at it. Okay, those are the places you want to be. There are a lot of scams out there. do your due diligence, please. Okay. Why ultimately going back to my original point get the material seen it around you right now
Alex Ferrari 1:36:45
the RB? How important is it for security? proof of concept? How important is that? official proof of concept?
RB Botto 1:36:53
proof of concept is everything I mean, look, you know, we had whiplash Tyler's Tyler's here, he was the manager at the time for Damien chazelle. When did whiplash, whiplash you know, was a originally originally conceived as a feature. Rather than as a feature. Nobody wants to back the damn thing. So he made it as a proof of concept. And what he did was he took it just one segment of the movie. And if you see the movie, the segments that made up the short was when the JK Simmons character decreases, by the way played the same character in the short, but it was a milestone as a drummer, with JK Simmons takes him into his confidence. And then, you know, in the office, you know, basically says them here, the next big thing and then kicks the shit out of them in the actual studio. That was pretty much all short. They submitted it to Sundance, as we were talking about earlier I was so I don't, you have a better chance of getting struck by lightning, again, you shorted Sundance, but I got it. And by the way, just did not put that on a very negative note, the short guy at the Sundance, but by the way, that feature was submitted to the lab and didn't get in. But the show got into Sundance, won Sundance got because of the proof of concept. Got the funding to turn it into a feature film, JK Simmons came back their bios color is shot today and what have we many days. But the thing is that you can put back into Sundance got into Sundance The following year, and went from winning the short in 2019 13, or 14 to winning the feature in 51 years. So the shorter 14 winning feature and 50 proof of concept. They got that short out everywhere, will be super, super powerful. But they got it out everywhere. They didn't worry about making money off the short. When they made with lash they made sure that every freakin executive in town saw that short lead shows on every platform is available everywhere. They move their crowd, because there was a big crowd bond with filmmakers and it moved them to say, hey, you gotta check this out. And that's why they got to the Sundance into Sundance, it's all yours. It was actually very welcome. Thank you for having.
So to carry out with what you're talking about. Sometimes filmmakers have a choice. Like say for example, I made it short to get into a few festival got to catch or film corner. And then I met some distributors when I was over that mark taking film and they wanted to put it on and inflicts a couple of emails and apps and stuff. But they say it cannot be on YouTube, it cannot be on the internet for free, if you want to put it on their distribution platform. So it that so you have to make a decision, you're going to get more views on the free platforms like YouTube, but it seems like I don't on the old days it was like that and your film has a distributor, meaning a third party that is not just taking it for free, but it's been curated by people who somehow feel like they have talent to recognize talent that it gives me as a filmmaker and my film a better resume, so that I can use that later in terms of talking, as opposed to I put on YouTube or Vimeo is there for free? It is, maybe, hopefully, a lot of us. But people go, Oh, well, it's just on YouTube. So unless it gets over 500,000, and you get some, you know, some digital agent that says, Okay, we'll have you brand some products now. I'm just trying to find out today in 2016, what should our focus be, in terms of where do we go with our content?
Alex Ferrari 1:40:40
I want to leave you with that answer. clarify that journey. In in result, and then these two guys right here will connect that right? Oh, yeah. Well, I think what you're trying to say is, you got to make a decision of what, what, what you want that content to do for you. So if your endgame is to make money, then maybe the distribution aspects is better, is your endgame to get attention and get credibility as a filmmaker, and get more eyes on it. And the other avenues on it, these are, these are the tough decisions that you have made already career. Because, you know, for me, when I did that little short film, that there was no, like YouTube was just born, there were no other options for me to get the word out there. I don't know, maybe I would have put it out there for free. But I decided not going to try to make some money with this. And it turned out to make sense for me. But it all depends on what your endgame is. And that's very clear with yourself when you go down any voted. And on a side note, guys, when you make your first feature, don't think you're going to get a job. You're not. And you should, that shouldn't be the goal anyway, shouldn't be the goal. If you're going into reverse feature, what I'm gonna meet, still, I'm gonna just, I'm all good. I'm gonna quit Sundance, Harvey's gonna come down, give me a check, we're gonna just go, you know, and that's it, we're going to can and so if you're going to do that, because I've met multiple those guys in my post production, see, if you're going into it with that, you're going to fail miserably. And you'll probably get, you'll probably never go back into the game. Understand that a lot of a lot of filmmakers get so caught up with their purchase, it's so difficult sometimes to get that person that made that you get so attached to it, it's my baby, I can't like, you can't be that precious with it. Especially with your first feature. You've got to just get it out there. And just know when you make your first feature, just, you're like, I'm not gonna, I'm just gonna get it out there. I'm gonna try to get me to get into festivals and to get attention. Maybe I'll get an agent maybe we'll get them to drive it maybe I'll you know, get a financier to finance my next project. By the way, I always have two or three other projects lined up right behind it, and so on. You're not going to make money on your first product. But there are those rare exceptions like myself, I'm going to make millions
RB Botto 1:43:00
we hear this all the time in the screenwriting space all the time I hear from national writers, like you know, I won Joe, as we talked about this on Friday to superior apologize, but I'm going to use the same analogy. You know, you I won Joe's screenwriting contest. Well, okay. managers, agents, producers, development executives, they don't know what Joe's gonna get, or they don't know from Joe's conference and they don't care. Okay, they know, you know, the nickel age. Fortunately for us now to start to get to know Steve's reaching out to stuff like that. That's fine, because you can go to that you can use that right? You mean, you can short phone call? It's the freaky Cannes Film Festival. You can go out there with that. That's actually very, very good. Okay, but if you're winning minor film festivals, there's nothing wrong with that. You can absolutely say and you know, we had this conversation that night, that sometimes the audience awards are better than winning the actual smaller film festivals because it proves the concept that the audience really the fans enjoyed the film, right? The fans of film enjoy it. You have to decide and be honest with yourself as to what matters and what doesn't. So if you're winning minor film festivals, you're not getting any traction or you're afraid that if you expose it now you're not gonna be able to enter the next one or the next one. The next one. I think you get the eyeballs. And I think in this day and age where, you know you have agents hiring people from YouTube, based on us managers, and they told this story the other night Seriously, this is a true story. With a Vimeo short film Warner came out in the building you know the video started showcasing shorts. Nobody in the industry deserves all my manager friends, all my producer friends, element executives, they will like whatever. Okay, I literally having lunch in manager a couple of weeks ago, he said to me, I'm almost I I'm almost afraid to have one anymore. Because if something gets posted and it goes viral, by the time I get back versus sign, I don't have a chance to bid on it. This is the world we live in now. So it's not always I got into this, sometimes it's like a fever with this, I caught the audience with this. She got it, make your choices, and you got it, you got to be realistic, what's really important, what isn't? I mean, it's become a joke in a way, how many of those wall you know, the film festival or the I mean, like, you know what I mean, like,
Alex Ferrari 1:45:33
I'll tell you what, my first month, I got into 185. Without one short, and I stopped, I just stopped because I could have gotten the problem and other hungry, because I kept submitting. And it just worked. And I just cuz at a certain point, at a certain point, I said, Well, I didn't get into Sundance, and I didn't get it to Xyz film festivals. So I'm just gonna send it to you. And I just submitted to everybody. And I actually did it all for free, by the way, and there's asked me afterwards about how I did it. But I only paid for about 30 women after that I just refused to spend money on but I just kept, I just kept going. And throughout my entire directing career that probably wore shorts only. And I've been in over 600 phone calls. Now that sounds wonderful. But Harvey has not given me that check yet. You know, so it really doesn't.
But still, at the end of the day doesn't it's nice and everything. But like at the end of the day to get where I wanted to go, you know, I have Roger Ebert review my movie, and it wasn't even festival, and I got a positive thumbs up review for water. From while I was visiting the Toronto Film Festival.
RB Botto 1:46:50
That's pretty cool, though. It is the most and that I put on the poster that I do.
Alex Ferrari 1:46:53
It's on my tombstone. Literally, I reprinted it's on my test, I can recite with the with
the distribution aspect, like after the festival wrap film, it has legs, it could live for the rest of your life. And even after you're dead in other platforms, distribution, but I'm just saying does it lose, you can lose that by going to YouTube for a while.
Alex Ferrari 1:47:21
And I get this a lot from a lot of filmmakers. You just got to make a choice. And what what's your aim? What is your aim to get signed with an agent or manager, then put it on Vimeo. And let's see what happens. If your if your aim is to get a lot of festivals and go around and, and and in festivals. festivals are wonderful. I've been in Holly shorts multiple times, I love us to look great and believe in it, but also talking to those festivals and events of any festivals. So if you haven't gone through that process, it's super fun, super wonderful. But I'm just you know, for me, like not now I'm gonna hopefully go to Tuscany with features. And now that whole experience is different than when it was Georgia. But it's about what you want this Amen. You gotta hit your target. It's marketing at the end of the day is it's your back to marketing and branding. What do you want to do with that content? You want to manage it? If you want to make money? Do you want to get eyeballs on if you want to build a brand? These are questions you have to ask yourself for yourself and
RB Botto 1:48:18
your content. And it's about being honest with yourself. Yep, the beauty right over right now. I mean, I tell everybody, it's such an amazing time kidding. We got to hold 10 minutes. But for those of you do right now, is the opportunities have never been greater. The choices have never been more abundant. There are so many ways to get a movie done. There are so many ways to get a movie scene, there are so many ways that we can distribute it. It really is an incredibly exciting time. But it really all starts with being honest with yourself. What are your goals? What do you have? What is you know, is the endgame money? It's not money, it's exposure? And then how do you go about it? And how do you go about it in an honest and true way that is going to give you the maximum value for what you spent so much time creating, because here's the 99% of the people who make movies today. Put 99% of their effort into making a movie. They don't want any time thought or effort into who's gonna watch it. Why are they a watcher? How are they going to watch it? And ultimately, what does it matter to me, and what do I want? They don't think about it. They just think it's the old way. And the old way was create art and get it out there and an audience will find it will get me let me play a song that shipped because the reality is situation is back then you have control over now but full control over it's the people that think it through from concept to completion and beyond that when the day and get to move on to the next thing and the next day the next thing and by the way, the audience with
Alex Ferrari 1:50:17
Anyway last question
How many times you guys tweet I was very fortunate another person said to me just tweet it Now how did you vote in it? Because I could remember she told me said right here you should do we should the project tweet so many times a day, she just told me five to eight times whether your tweet content, information, news, anything like to keep it no matter how many times you
Alex Ferrari 1:50:50
Umm, I don't care. Twitter is one of those things Twitter is one of those platforms that it's constantly moving. So if I tweet now, only the people that happen to look at me at that moment is going to do so I'll I'll tweet 3040 times a day, purely because I won't catch it and I tested it. I actually tested I'm like, you know, I'm just gonna I'm gonna tweak 50 times today. You repeat that like no, it's not the same. Yeah, I'll do like the same fleet maybe three times in a day, morning afternoon and like you know that lady that afternoon and then I'll just tweak other things. So I just pounded it one day I want to see how many people I lose. And I'm like Okay, so this is the way it just goes through and then I think in my entire year I had one guy go you tweeted twice. I'm not gonna follow you see?
RB Botto 1:51:44
I think we're getting pulled off. So I'm gonna answer this really quick, but I look at it differently. How many how much information do you want to get out there? Actually to each right. I don't look at it as somebody comes to me today I look at it for how many times do you engage with other people that day? So it's not just the information you're trying to get out there. But the information that people put into you how many times really on Twitter is I know the answer to this in this room and other rooms. Do you actually look at your home train with what other people are tweeting and respond to it? Thank you for posting that. I really feel sorry because that's the participation see a lot of people don't want to do that. That's the participation that's what I would be asking myself more. You want to put original content up there you can do it five times you can do it 30 times doesn't matter. People won't get sick of the content if they like you. They love this stuff. You will get his engagement when you look at his stream they will love what he puts out there Why wouldn't I want more of what he's putting out there? It's just more for me to look at. Okay. The other thing that they're engaged by is that he's engaged that's what matters so those
Alex Ferrari 1:53:01
30 40 tweets I also reach me in those 30
RB Botto 1:53:06
And by the way if you're not looking at statistics online and what this means that you know you know what passes the test the smell test Are you getting responses are you getting training or people going to eat them you are people have you're refuting them having that's what that's where you're going no
Alex Ferrari 1:53:24
Are you are you guys still here? If you guys are still here oh my god you guys are troopers and true believers of the indie film tribe my friends thank you so much for listening to me squawk even more than I usually do. And I even brought help along this time to squawk even more than I than I do on a normal day. So I really hope you guys got a lot out of that I really love doing it. And it was a lot a lot of fun and I hope to be doing more of those in the future doing more live events so I can reach out to the tribe and and get get to know you guys a little bit better so hope you liked it guys. I'm gonna keep this short keep that also going keep that dream alive and I will talk to you soon.
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