To follow up the popular Tubefilter Pitch Camp at the Digital Hollywood Content Summit, we took the show on the road to the East Coast. Yesterday, at Digital Hollywood NYC, three independent content creators brought their best five-minute dog and pony shows to a panel of established industry professionals who are in the business of buying and selling quality online entertainment every day.
David Armour (Vice President, Development, Programming & Sales, Digital Media – Endemol USA), Wilson Cleveland (SVP, Producer – CJP Digital Media), Paul Kontonis (VP, Group Director, Brand Content – The Third Act, Digitas), and Ryan Noggle (Supervising Producer – NBC Universal Digital Studio) evaluated pitches over four basic criteria:
- Originality — let’s not rehash failed TV pilots, but instead let’s see something new. Originality is always a good thing.
- Marketing Plan — make sure to think about not only the concept, but how you plan on reaching your audience.
- Use of the Internet as a medium — Think about why your project is made for the web. If it’s multi-platform, think about how to harness the internet’s unique strengths.
- Fit for Brands — Think about content that’s fit for major brands to come on board to support.
Leila Cohan-Miccio and Caitlin Tegart presented the hipster third wave, feminist web series Vag Magazine. Patrick Lawson and Christopher Born from Too Smart Guys showed the technophile favorite Beyond the Clipping Plane. And Christina Esther pitched the real-life stories of femtrepreneurs in NYC, The Lights.
If you could distill all the great feedback and perspective from the Pitch Camp into one specific takeaway sure to help you succeed in selling your web series to distributors, ad agencies, viewers, and any other potential partners, it would be this: Have a fantastic one sentence pitch.
All the panelists noted how it’s one of the most important and overlooked components of a presentation. The ability to boil complex ideas or proposals down to a simple synopsis of few words or a sexy logline is an absolutely necessary skill. The people making the decisions on whether or not to put dollars behind your project look at tens and even hundreds of pitches a week. You need to make sure you have a descriptive line that can quickly and easily get their attention.
Be on the lookout for Tubefilter’s next Pitch Camp and many thanks to all the panelists, presenters, and especially the good people at the Digital Hollywood Content Summit.