In the years since we covered how to promote your film on social media, much of the industry has changed. Between 2017 and 2021, the number of social media users increased from 2.48 billion to 3.09 billion – meaning nearly half the world’s population is now on some form of social media or another.
The way we use social media has also changed: Facebook has become less of a place to post personal updates and more of a platform for current events and news, and for joining groups of people sharing the same interests, and personal content creation has moved to TikTok and Instagram. We’ve also seen the advent of crowdfunding
platforms like Indiegogo and Kickstarter, which have enabled the production and release of many great films.
What does this mean for filmmakers who want to take advantage of social media when promoting their films? Some principles still hold true, but a shift in messaging may be helpful.
Choose the right platform
There are dozens of social media platforms out there today, and each of them will impact your marketing efforts
It’s important to determine: 1) your target audience, and 2) the platform that your audience frequents the most.
That being said, it’s also worth looking into what platforms have proven to be successful when it comes to marketing films. A study by Neustar, for instance, found that Facebook had the highest return on ad spend (ROAS), with studios earning almost $8 (£6) for every dollar spent on paid Facebook ads.
Watch your timing
“There’s a time and place for everything,” and this goes for your social media content as well. Finding the right
platform for your marketing efforts is only part of the process: you also need to time your posts correctly. This hasn’t changed, but getting it done has become significantly easier.
Plenty of studies have already established the most effective times to publish content on different social media
platforms. For instance, research has found that the best time to post on Instagram is 11:00 on Wednesdays. You
can use an Instagram Scheduler and set up all your posts for the week in advance, highlighting the most important ones for the most impactful times for maximum engagement. For Twitter, the best time to post is usually 8:00 on Mondays and Thursdays.
Twitter has a built-in feature to set up Scheduled Tweets to make things easier for you as well. Make use of modern technology and programs to be able to get the timings right on your social media posts.
Originality is still key
They say that there’s nothing new under the sun, but as a filmmaker, your best bet is to show people what makes
your film original. Elements of your film may have been done before, but what are you doing differently? Identify what makes your project unique and highlight this through your social media posts.
However, this doesn’t mean foregoing trends altogether. Many brands have started using TikTok Challenges to
improve their reach, and this is definitely something that your studio could do as well. The trick is to find a balance
between original content and taking advantage of trends.
Engage with the community and build relevance
Community engagement has always been a major benefit of promoting your project on social media. Your marketing should not just be original, but be relatable as well. However, it’s important to ensure that your community engagement remains relevant and authentic.
This becomes increasingly important as today’s social media platforms have become inundated with bots and services that sell likes and shares. When creating content for Instagram, a platform that arguably sees the highest number of bots, you need to be able to find and share authentic user-generated content related to your film and the industry you operate in.
Social media trends may shift and change, but the basic principles will always remain the same: find the right
platform, time your posts, and keep things unique and relevant.
Further Reading: Social Media Promotion For Filmmakers