Indie Filmmaking Tips for Beginners
Due to the rise of the internet and the latest video production and editing technologies, nowadays, almost anyone can produce an independent movie. However, producing a successful indie movie is a different story. Yes, film production and editing tools are a lot more accessible nowadays than a few years ago. And the internet has countless marketing opportunities. However, the competition is also a lot fiercer nowadays than it ever was, and many young producers are struggling to create unique movies and gain a good amount of visibility for their indie productions. Nonetheless, as long as you acknowledge the reality and you prepare for the obstacles that lie ahead, you can put together a solid plan to produce a really successful movie. And we have some tips that will put you on the right tracks to success!
1. Good stories always sell
Storytelling is the heart of marketing. As long as you tell a good story, you can convince people to buy anything. So, if you have a good story for your movie, you are on the right path. But how do you know if you really have a good story? Firstly, you must ask yourself a few questions.
- Does your story have interesting characters?
- Do your characters have specific goals?
- Does your story have a clear setting?
- Do your characters engage in interesting actions?
- Is your dialogue catchy and relevant?
All of these elements are essential for a good story. However, the answers to these questions can be subjective, so you should ask for opinions from friends, acquaintances, and peer writers if you know any.
2. Choose a good shooting location
Movies with big budgets can afford to film all over the world, but indie filmmakers must do with nearby locations, preferably public locations which don’t need to be rented for the filmmaking process. You can considerably reduce your budget if you can manage to film your while movie in a single location, as it can be very costly to transport your crew and your equipment from one location to another.
3. Don’t underestimate the power of visual effects
Since you are dealing with a limited budget, you will have to make a few compromises. When considering where you can cut down your costs, try to measure which elements have a bigger impact on the end result. For example, it is wiser to choose a free location and hire a visual effects team to give your movie a more artistic vibe, than to choose an expensive location and have no money left for visual effects. There are many companies that provide affordable visual effects services for indie movie producers. We personally recommend the VFX Los Angeles Studio, as they have been in this industry for many years, and they have a lot of experience with independent movie productions.
4. Experiment different marketing techniques
One way to ensure the success of your movie is to build a fan base before you even start producing. The easiest way to do this is with a blog where you can release glimpses of your story, and keep your fans involved in the filmmaking process. Promote your blog on social media for higher visibility and collaborate with fellow filmmakers to advertise each other. There are also some crazier strategies that could yield unexpected results. Believe it or not, movies that start with the letter A or with a number are more likely to be successful, as they have a greater visibility on iTunes. Needless to say, a good trailer is essential in order to get people’s attention. Even if you are producing a short movie, you still need a trailer. Getting listed on relevant websites like Wikipedia and IMDB can also help, as it will give your movie more credibility. If your movie matches a theme, like a specific holiday, make sure to start promoting it about two months in advance of said holiday.