Looks like you are a new visitor to this site. Hello!

Welcome to Hope For Film! Come participate in the discussion, and I encourage you to enter your email address in the sidebar and subscribe. It's free! And easy! If you have any suggestions on how to improve this website or suggestions for topics please don't hesitate to write in to any of the blogs.

You can also follow me on Twitter or Facebook.

(If you keep getting this message, you probably have cookies turned off.)

March 5 at 8:30am

Diary of a Film Startup: Post # 22: Outlet Soup

By Ted Hope

By Roger Jackson

Previously: Delivery Begins

Outlet Soup

It seems like every few days there’s an announcement of another video-on-demand platform. We’ve been tracking them since we started 6 months ago. I have a spreadsheet listing them all — where they are, what type of films they want, deal terms, ownership, traffic ranking, etc. As of today there are 163 on my list, and I’m sure I’m missing a few. What does this mean? How is it possible for even a fraction of these platforms to thrive and prosper in a VoD ecosystem dominated by large incumbents with established brands, pre-existing audiences and deep pockets? Netflix has 27m subscribers in the USA and is rapidly expanding in Europe and Latin America, with 6m+ non-US subscribers already. Amazon has a multi-billion dollar VoD war-chest and has gobbled up LOVEFiLM in the UK and Germany. Hulu is closing in on a billion dollars in annual revenue, and already has 3m subscribers for Hulu Plus. And Vudu is owned by Walmart. Oh, and Dreamworks and Technicolor just launched their impressive VoD platform, M-GO. Even Microsoft is getting into the VoD game with Xbox Live Movies. Of course, from KinoNation’s point of view, this expanding system just makes our service more valuable, since most filmmakers want their movie available on as many of these services as possible. So I’m busy signing deals with as many of these 163 outlets as possible.

Early Success

Since we’re now actively “pitching” the first tranche of Kinonation films, I thought it might be useful to give a few examples of movies that have been Accepted by outlets in various countries — outlets such as Hulu, iTunes, SnagFilms, Viewster, IndieReign, Kinopto. This isn’t an exhaustive list by any means, but a sampling of ten films — 5 features and 5 docs — in various categories and from various countries — that have been green-lit for distribution by our VoD partners. I’m linking here to the trailers.

Black Sun
This is Ours
Meanwhile in Mamelodi
Kumpania Flamenco
Banana in a Nutshell
Citizen Jia Li

What do they have in common? I’m not sure, except they’re all compelling, unique, attention-grabbing. The trailers don’t waste precious time — they get right to it. Plus the simple but important first impression stuff that I never stop talking about — attractive, clear, readable poster art. Intriguing — or at least not boring — title. Some film festival laurels and a decent number of views for the trailer. Plus a level of depth, care and completeness for the metadata. e.g. IMDb page has poster art, festival info up to date, thumbnails for the main actors, etc. All requires work, but very achievable, and makes ALL the difference when VoD outlets are making their Yes or No decisions.

Speaking of Metadata…

It’s increasingly clear to me that for films to succeed in this VoD ecosystem they must have incredibly rich, detailed and imaginative metadata. We’ve just released to our 100+ beta testers the latest version of our site with a radically expanded “super-set” of metadata. It’s SO important for filmmakers to invest time in this data — a lot of time — that I’m tempted to head each of the 12 metadata pages with “Spend at least 2 hours here before you move on to the next page!” Seriously? 24 hours or so of brainstorming and thought and effort in things like plot descriptions, keywords, images and marketing data? Yes, absolutely! In my previous post I covered the critical importance of rich, detailed and imaginative keywords & phrases. And I’ve already written about why kick-ass key art, poster image and thumbnails are mission critical to getting the audience to buy. The bottom line is that once your initial online sales push (email blasts, Facebook posts, press release) is done, you want your film to get found — discovered is a better word — over and over, year in, year out, across dozens of VoD platforms. That only happens with excellent metadata.

Keep ‘em Coming

Finally, great films are submitted to KinoNation every day. This one — the beautifully shot Julien & Claire — came in today. Love it — can’t wait to watch the full length version that will be automatically generated once filmmaker Adam Neustadter completes the upload. Keep them coming.

Next Up: Post # 23: (scheduled for Tues March 19th)

Roger Jackson is a producer and the co-founder of film distribution start-up KinoNation. He was Vice President, Content for digital film pioneer iFilm.com and has produced short films in Los Angeles, documentaries in Darfur, Palestine and Bangladesh, a reality series for VH1 and one rather bad movie for FuelTV. You can reach him at roger@kinonation.com.

  • Digg
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • Print


leave a comment
  1. John Harrigan / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    Thanks Roger, incredibly useful. Especially for indie filmmakers who are currently examining the best way to ensure their films stand out. As you state Meta-Data is obviously key to this.

  2. Wickram / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    Interesting read. Do you have any data on what kind of movies that generates highest views and can you share this with VOD partners?

  3. Roger Jackson / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    It’s a bit early, we probably need a year of data to do any meaningful regression analysis. Anecdotally it’s all about “discoverability” — where on a VoD platform a film is features (e.g. top of Drama page vs. bottom) and also the metadata, particularly key words/phrases.

  4. chetown / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    Nice article Roger. We also accept indie movies as well as TV shows. Most of our programming is music related, but we take all types. if you have a ROKU, look us up under “music” section for iFame TV. Thanks!

  5. Wickram / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    Thanks for the reply. Will you be able to guide VOD platforms on which movie need to be featured on gene page?

  6. get the facts / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    I just want to tell you that I am all new to blogging and site-building and actually savored your web blog. Almost certainly I’m likely to bookmark your website . You actually come with good posts. Cheers for sharing your webpage.

  7. look at this site / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    I just want to say I’m newbie to weblog and really savored you’re web blog. Probably I’m going to bookmark your website . You certainly have fabulous stories. Thanks a lot for revealing your webpage.

  8. look at this site / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    I simply want to tell you that I am very new to blogs and seriously enjoyed your web blog. Probably I’m likely to bookmark your site . You certainly come with excellent articles and reviews. Appreciate it for sharing your blog site.

  9. great website / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    I just want to say I’m beginner to weblog and honestly enjoyed you’re web site. Almost certainly I’m planning to bookmark your blog post . You actually have awesome article content. With thanks for sharing with us your web page.

  10. fairy garden / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    You actually make it seem so easy along with your presentation however I find this matter to be really something which I think I might by no means understand. It kind of feels too complicated and very extensive for me. I am looking forward in your next publish, I will attempt to get the cling of it!

  11. VoIP / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    You have brought up a very great points , thankyou for the post.

  12. VoIP / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    I like what you guys are up also. Such clever work and reporting! Keep up the superb works guys I have incorporated you guys to my blogroll. I think it will improve the value of my site :) .

  13. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    Excellent blog post. I certainly love this site. Keep it up!

  14. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    Right here is the perfect blog for everyone who would like to understand this topic. You know so much its almost hard to argue with you (not that I personally would want to…HaHa). You definitely put a new spin on a topic which has been discussed for years. Excellent stuff, just great!

  15. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    Very good article. I definitely love this site. Keep writing!

  16. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    It’s hard to come by well-informed people about this topic, but you sound like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks

  17. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    Everything is very open with a really clear explanation of the issues. It was definitely informative. Your site is very helpful. Thanks for sharing!

  18. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    Good article! We are linking to this great post on our website. Keep up the great writing.

  19. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    I have to thank you for the efforts you have put in penning this site. I’m hoping to see the same high-grade content by you in the future as well. In fact, your creative writing abilities has encouraged me to get my own, personal site now ;)

  20. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    After checking out a handful of the blog articles on your website, I really appreciate your technique of writing a blog. I book-marked it to my bookmark website list and will be checking back soon. Please visit my website as well and tell me how you feel.

  21. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    There’s definately a lot to find out about this issue. I like all the points you made.

  22. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    You ought to take part in a contest for one of the highest quality sites on the web. I am going to recommend this website!

  23. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    Aw, this was an exceptionally nice post. Taking a few minutes and actual effort to produce a great article… but what can I say… I procrastinate a lot and never manage to get anything done.

  24. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    After looking into a handful of the blog posts on your website, I really like your way of writing a blog. I added it to my bookmark website list and will be checking back in the near future. Please visit my website too and tell me what you think.

  25. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    Good web site you’ve got here.. It’s hard to find high-quality writing like yours these days. I honestly appreciate individuals like you! Take care!!

  26. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    I blog quite often and I genuinely appreciate your content. The article has really peaked my interest. I will bookmark your site and keep checking for new information about once per week. I opted in for your RSS feed too.

  27. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    Pretty! This has been an incredibly wonderful post. Thanks for providing this info.

  28. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    This is a very good tip particularly to those new to the blogosphere. Brief but very precise info… Thanks for sharing this one. A must read article!

  29. utpa emergency loan / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    It’s impressive that you are getting thoughts from this paragraph as well as from our argument made at this time.|

  30. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    Very good article! We will be linking to this great content on our website. Keep up the great writing.

  31. ÿþM / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    I’ve been exploring for a bit for any high quality articles or blog posts on this sort of area . Exploring in Yahoo I ultimately stumbled upon this website. Studying this information So i’m glad to express that I have a very just right uncanny feeling I discovered exactly what I needed. I such a lot undoubtedly will make certain to don’t omit this website and provides it a look regularly.

  32. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    I was very happy to find this site. I wanted to thank you for your time for this particularly fantastic read!! I definitely enjoyed every part of it and I have you book-marked to see new information on your blog.

  33. Howdy I am so excited I found your blog, I really found you by error, while I was browsing on Yahoo for something else, Regardless I am here now and would just like to say many thanks for a remarkable post and a all round thrilling blog (I also love the theme/design), I don’t have time to read through it all at the moment but I have book-marked it and also included your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be back to read a great deal more, Please do keep up the fantastic work.|

  34. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    Great info. Lucky me I recently found your site by accident (stumbleupon). I have saved it for later!

  35. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    This is the perfect web site for anybody who would like to find out about this topic. You understand a whole lot its almost hard to argue with you (not that I really will need to…HaHa). You definitely put a fresh spin on a subject that has been written about for many years. Excellent stuff, just wonderful!

  36. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    It’s hard to come by well-informed people for this subject, but you seem like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks

  37. whoah this weblog is magnificent i like reading your posts. Stay up the good work! You already know, a lot of people are hunting round for this information, you can aid them greatly. |

  38. detektyw wroclaw / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    Thanks for a marvelous posting! I definitely enjoyed reading it, you are a great author. I will make certain to bookmark your blog and will often come back at some point. I want to encourage one to continue your great job, have a nice morning!|

  39. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    I’m amazed, I have to admit. Rarely do I encounter a blog that’s equally educative and interesting, and without a doubt, you have hit the nail on the head. The issue is something which not enough folks are speaking intelligently about. I am very happy I found this in my search for something concerning this.

  40. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    Having read this I thought it was really informative. I appreciate you spending some time and energy to put this information together. I once again find myself spending a significant amount of time both reading and posting comments. But so what, it was still worth it!

  41. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    It’s hard to come by knowledgeable people in this particular topic, but you sound like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks

  42. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    Good information. Lucky me I came across your blog by chance (stumbleupon). I have saved as a favorite for later!

  43. www / Mar 5 at 8:30am

    Next time I read a blog, Hopefully it does not fail me just as much as this one. I mean, I know it was my choice to read through, but I really thought you would probably have something interesting to say. All I hear is a bunch of complaining about something that you can fix if you were not too busy looking for attention.

Leave a Comment

This site could not have been built without the help and insight of Michael Morgenstern. My thanks go out to him.

Help save indie film and give this guy a job in web design or film!