(Part two from our interview with Mark Smillie)
Said another way, can you build an audience for your product before you release it?
In my interview with Mark Smillie he raised the notion of releasing some type of app before the final movie is completed. Given the low development costs relative to the marketing exposure potential, a film maker could package up outtakes, early clips—even weave in connections to Facebook and Twitter—all for the purpose of building a community of followers well ahead of a movie’s release.
Think of the potential here. Give away content in an app store to build your audience, and when the product is done you’ll have a ready-made fan base to buy it. You could offer it to them first; even discounting it (you owe them that much, right?). After all, you would not have to pay the app store it’s 30% or so fee.
Why not take this a step further? Why not create an interactive game that let’s people explore the storyline? If you give them a way to provide feedback you might use that to help you shape the story.
Either way you gain new insights and some of these might just take you in an unexpected direction—one that could make your project even more successful.