Friday, March 7, 2014

"Anyone who likes documentaries" is not a market segment

Pegged to the recent Academy Awards for documentaries, a Wall Street Journal article relates how the creators of these movies approach marketing them.

"In a certain sense," said independent distributor Richard Abramowitz, "the smaller the audience, t
he more likely you can find them."

How to market a documentary about the Large Hadron Collider and its role in the discovery of the Higgs boson?  Besides screening it at a few selected art houses that documentary aficionado frequent, it will also play the AMC multiplex in Naperville, IL, near a lab that participated in the project. "We drop it right near the lab and we can benefit from community interest," says Abramowitz.

What about "Pandora's Promise," an unabashedly pronuclear movie? Abramowitz, the consummate middleman, targeted energy-industry audiences and researchers. 

Having a media product-- or any product-- that can be targeted to a well defined and reachable audience greatly reduces marketing costs. Thus it may be more profitable than a product that may be of interest to a larger segment but one more difficult to efficiently find and distribute to. A good example of when less can be more.

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