South By SouthWest Conference [1]

by | Mar 15, 2023 | Conference, Blog | 4 comments

This series of posts is about our experiences attending the South by SouthWest Conference and Festival in Austin, TX.

Own Your Destiny: The Shopify of Film Distribution (session)

(Left-Right) David White (Shift72)
Tanner Stechnij (Festival Scope)
Deirdre Haj (Film Streams)
Ahbra Perry (Alamo Drafthouse Cinemas)

This was a session that discussed unconventional ways of getting your film project out in the world outside of the traditional distribution methods. There was an emphasis on Producers tips around identifying and pushing your Marketing narrative and doing your research to develop a Distribution plan that includes all of the windows (theatrical, PVOD, streaming, etc), and “thinking globally from day one”.Their ideas on ‘audience hacking’ and creative monetization through niche festivals were interesting. For example, not many think about screening a film at churches, libraries, or educational facilities as part of a ‘word-of-mouth’ strategy for the “VelociPastor” movie (inside joke… you just had to be there, lol)

“Your Global Marketing Plan and Distribution Strategy is Just as important as your Script” was the takeaway message. Let us know in the comments what sort of strategies you would use to broaden the reach of a film.


  1. Margareta

    This is very interesting. Though I had never really thought about it, it makes perfect sense. And it is exactly the same in music. The artists come up with creative marketing plans, the big labels want to do it the “regular, traditional” way. It ends up being a kind of hybrid. But the hype seems to come from the creative, thinking-outside-the-box strategy. That is very interesting.The message “Your Global Marketing Plan and Distribution Strategy is Just as important as your Script” is of course true since if no one has heard of the project, they would never find it and have a chance to enjoy the script. I’d be interested in hearing more examples of where and how that would be done for a film.

  2. Oliver Ovén

    Hi Salaam!

    Thank for an intriguing blog post. I would also suggest the strategy where films are screened for example, at churches, libraries, or educational facilities as you mentioned. Those are definitely not the traditional places to screen films, but it could be a great new way to break habits and introduce something new, whether the categories of those films are related to the character of the place / audience where they are screened or not.

  3. Amir Chaouch

    Hello Salaam,

    I completely agree that having a solid global marketing plan and distribution strategy is crucial for getting your film out there. The session’s emphasis on identifying and pushing your marketing narrative and researching all distribution windows is spot on. I also found the ideas on “audience hacking” and creative monetization through niche festivals to be intriguing. Overall, this session provided some valuable insights on how to broaden the reach of a film beyond traditional distribution methods. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Mayra Martinez

    It is very interesting to hear how creative people are getting with ways to monetize their content. It creates a lot more diversity and opportunity for everyone. Very cool topic.


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