Bologna, Day 2 – from digital marketing to diversifying audiences

Today’s session kicks off with Marvin Wiechert (Marketing manager MUBI) who shares his insights on how to reach new audiences through digital marketing. The plus of digital marketing as opposed to traditional, offline marketing, is that it gives us detailed data, which makes it measureable. The downside is that we are dependent on these major platforms and that digital marketing is constantly changing. We have to keep on analyzing and adapting to these changes. His advice to the participants is to do a platform analysis to see what fits your cinema and wishes, but one thing that’s certain is try to be engaging and appealing to your potential followers. Don’t bombard them with one sided posts, but really think about their wishes.

Julian Staartjes (Filmhallen) gives a presentation on how you can get to know your audience through digital marketing. Their main marketing tool is their website and their goal is to make people who pass by, returning visitors and in the end; ambassadors. Through collecting data you can really get to know your audience and this way, you can start building fitting campaigns for different audiences. Two examples of their campaigns are upselling Cineville memberships and  crosselling special programming.

Anne-Laure Louvet (Cinema Galeries) shares their insights on creating and sharing to build audience loyalty. One of the ways they do this is choosing one visual for their specials and adapt this visual in different formats, such as posters, flyers and totes, but also sharing photos of certain events. This ensures a certain recognizability towards your audience.

Milan Simanek (Kino Art) shares his view on how to reach your audience. Instagram has proven to be a good tool for them, especially because they show their employees in these images. They have said farewell to printed communication forms, even the older generation know how to use the internet to find the programming. Their trying ways of making their website more user friendly, but communicating the possibilities of their website to the audience is sometimes a struggle. They try to reach new audiences by creating different kind of events, such as scoring silent movies by DJ’s.

Marvin Wiechert joins us again to tell us on how to reach out to new audiences through subscription models and memberships. Direct marketing is an easy tool to use and the plus is that people have to sign up for it themselves. And if you have this data there are ways to do targeted promo. The most basic form of direct marketing is your newsletter.  He advices the participants to just find out what works for you, you can start with emails first and later think of different kind of memberships. All you need to get started is an email address/ phonenumber and to have people log in on your website. This way you can start to track them.

After this presentation the participants are divided into 8 groups and are given the task to to present ways to launch an audience building initiative. In these presentations a number of examples are  presented and how to attract these groups: from young audiences, to refugees. But also, filmfestivals hosted by and for high school students, or even how you can attracht older and younger generations together in mash-up programs. And, ideas on how you can host creative workshops for kids and host filmscreenings especially for older generations who might feel lonely and excluded from certain social gatherings.

After the lunch a group of youngsters aged between 16 and 20 years of age tell us about their CR Young project together with the Cineteca. These youngsters are interested in working in the cinema industry later on in their careers and have found a way to learn from the Cineteca’s know how and create their own ways to reach a young audience: they make video introductions, create marketing tools and even host screenings and do interviews.

Züleyha Azman (KINO Rotterdam) presents a case study on the creative marketing tools they produce in their cinema to promote their special programming. They make their own trailers, but also find new ways to promote their events. It’s important that your venue has to live an breathe a certain special; for their Wes Anderson special they’ve hosted a dress up party, introduced a special burger in their restaurant, a new cocktail which can be ordered at the bar and have made a Wes Anderson style video with their own colleagues.

Laurent Callonnec (Cinéma L’Ecran) tells about his project to create new networks in order to introduce new members to the cinema. These are people from different areas, from theatres, universities and bookshops. What do they need from you cinema and how can they use your space to host events to create a certain brand loyalty.

Marlena Gabryzsewska (Stowarzyszenie Kin Studyjnch) shares their experience on creating an online VOD platform during the pandemic in three weeks time, especially for arthouse films. They created a trailer to promote it and through this platform they created a feeling of community in a time it was really necessary. By subscribing to this platform viewers supported their favorite cinemas. They had 62.000 subscribers and the platform is still online. They work together with different festivals and it is a way to host certain masterclasses on directors who’s newerst films can be seen in the cinema.

Gian Luca Farinelli end this insightful day with presenting the developments of the underground cinema Modernissimo which is due to open in November of this year. A place which is intended to celebrate the history of cinema and will have a museum, café and of course a screening room. A place where different types of audiences can sink into 130 years of cinema history.

This day end with the eight groups adding post it on the white board with things they will take back from this session and challenges they face when they go back.