8 Tips for Making a Promotional Website for Your Film or Video
Effective websites can help promote your film or video project. Follow these eight tips to make sure you’re getting the most out of your online efforts.
Cover image via Farknot Architect.
Whether you’re just starting a project or are finishing up and looking for distribution, building a website to promote your film — short, feature, or anything in between — is never a bad idea. If done well, it can really boost your project. The trick is not to get bogged down.
Here are eight tips to help you create a simple, clean, informative website for your next film or video project.
1. Use a Web Platform
Image by Rawpixel.com.
If you know your way around coding and web design, great. More power to you — go build a website from scratch. However, if you don’t, to maximize your time, use a service or a free web platform like Wix or Squarespace. This is your best bet to get something done quickly and professionally. Here are a few to consider:
2. Buy Your Domain
Image by By JMiks.
While this step isn’t necessarily essential, it will make your website look more professional. Also, with many of these services, like Wix and Squarespace, paying a hosting fee also upgrades your membership, so you get better functionality and a few more customization options. It will also remove the “.squarespace” part of your website, so it can be a clean and simple domain just for your project.
3. Keep it Simple
Image by This Is Me.
This should be your number one rule throughout. A website will never make or break your project — at least not in the same way your cinematography or sound design will. At most, it will be a nice perk that adds a bit of professional flair to your project. So, treat your investment as such, and keep the information on your site simple and easy to find.
4. Share Basic Info
Image by Rawpixel.com.
Ideally, your film will speak for itself. If you have a trailer or teaser video, your website is a great place to make that available. But beyond this content, you’ll want to only include the basic information: who, what, when, where, and (briefly) why. Tell your story, but make it concise and include information about how to learn more or contact the filmmakers.
5. Press Kit
If you have a press kit, your website is a great place to host it. Your press kit will come in handy later as you’re promoting your film and looking for press and distribution — and if you end up screening at any festivals. A press kit doesn’t have to be complex, but it should include a few basics. Here are some good resources for more on press kits.
- How to Create a Dynamic Press Kit
- 6 Production Tips for Shooting an Electronic Press Kit
- The Ultimate Guide to Creating an EPK (with FREE Template & Samples)
6. Awards and Laurels
Image by Michaelica.
Be sure to include every award, festival laurel, and accreditation that your film has earned. This is your space to show off and validate your film’s status through its achievements. If you have blurbs or quotes from reviews, don’t hide those (but don’t overdo it either).
7. Contact Info
Perhaps the most important function of your website is to include contact info so interested parties can reach you. Build a clear contact page for all inquiries, including everything from press requests to distribution queries to fans simply looking to learn more.
8. Connect with Your Audience
Image by Robert Kneschke.
Finally, give your website visitors a way to join your audience. If you have other social media pages — Facebook, Twitter, etc. — leave links your visitors can follow for more updates. If you have a FilmFreeway account or Vimeo or Youtube pages that you’re looking to grow, share those as well. Give your visitors at least one more place to go where they can further engage with you and your project.
For more tips on promoting and marketing your film projects, check out some of these resources.