A new episode from Boston comedy dating web series “617: The Series”
Mystery-Romance “Connection Lost” – brought to you in partnership with Equal Exchange
Today, we’re thrilled to announce the launch of our newest filmmaker opportunity in partnership with Vistaprint: the Reality or Fiction? Independent Business Owner Web Series Competition. Vistaprint, a global leader in affordable, high-quality products for small and emerging businesses, is looking for both narrative and reality show web series that will captivate viewers with the unique emotional highs and lows of being a small business owner or entrepreneur.
Starting today through February 24, pitches are being accepted at ZoomTilt.com. Interested filmmakers can pitch to Vistaprint’s narrative brief, reality show brief or both – best of all there’s no limit to the number of times you pitch! Multiple finalists will be selected and funded to produce pilot episodes of their series, and if Vistaprint (not to mention your audience) loves your pilot, you could win a $15,000 per episode web series deal! For more information, visit ZoomTilt.com - and feel free to forward this opportunity to friends and colleagues if you think you can handle the extra competition.
Good luck – and may the best filmmaker win!
Overcoming hurricanes, floods, location cancels, equipment malfunctions and more (although, admittedly, some projects did a better job of overcoming than others), all five TV Reset Project web series finalists’ pilots have now arrived on ZoomTilt TV.
The five finalist pilot episodes are presented below in alphabetical order. Remember, all five shows are competing in our first web TV competition, so go check them all out and, most importantly, share the shows you like with your friends and social media followers. Your share is your vote!
“Cool Justice” by Todd Rulapaugh and Brian Groh
“Not So Super” by Christophor Rick
“The Pickup Chicks” by Stacie Capone and Small Media Extra Large
“Shining City” by Douglas Stark
“Spycology” by Tenth Gate Productions
Thanks again to all of our entrants, semi-finalists and finalists for all their hard work and dedication through the entire competition. Now everybody go view, vote and share!
Video marketing is a content marketing cornerstone, and an integral aspect of brand reach, influence, experience and inbound engagement. Regardless of what your brand identity is, if you aren’t prioritizing video marketing within your content marketing roadmap, then you’re missing one of the best opportunities to draw audiences and customers to an immersive message that is (1) highly sharable in digital and (2) when done correctly, creates high-valence emotional connections. Video marketing can put tiny companies like Dollar Shave Club firmly on the blog roll in a matter of weeks, catapult fledging startups like Ministry of Supply to Kickstarter campaign immortality and event help an established brand like Samsung reinvent itself as the hip, iconic upstart usurping Apple’s smart phone dominance.
Source: Edelman and Adobe.
Overall, there are many benefits to video marketing, including these seven benefits every digital marketer needs to know:
7. Less Investment Needed for Video Marketing Than You Might Think
Did your agency just quote you $200,000 for that social video campaign activation for two quarters from now? Then you’re talking to the wrong solution provider. The reality is technology, information access and competition among creatives has dramatically dropped the cost of procuring high quality, professional video. Moreover, branded video doesn’t need sparkling big-budget studio color-correction to succeed with online audiences. Rather, it needs to resonate with viewers by being hilarious, edgy, inspiring or shocking, and above all, authentic, with characters, visuals and experiences people relate to. As a result, companies like Ford, Ikea, Proctor & Gamble, KMart, Target, AT&T and Fidelity are finding that with just a fraction of their TV ad budget, some savvy storyboarding, social media integration and a thoughtful distribution strategy, digital video marketing significantly outperforms the ROI from traditional TV ad investment.
Which would you rather watch?
Traditional media (sorry eHarmony):
We thought so too.
6. Precision Targeting
With digital video marketing your brand can reach a targeted consumer audience with relative ease. And by properly taking advantage of social media, distribution channel and keyword targeting, your priority demographic audience can be engaged with near-surgical precision. By combining good content with sufficient seeding to drive an initial, critical mass of viewers to their content microsite, YouTube channel and/or social media hub, brands can hit an earned media home run from social sharing and viral referral. Advocates who like your video are more than empowered to tag, retweet, repost, pin or re-blog it if you make content that is highly sharable.
5. When People Care They Share and Participate
Watching video generates approximately 60% of internet traffic. Other data show that YouTube’s 1 million daily unique visitors watch nearly 3 billion videos per day, with 46% of those viewers taking some sort of action for every TrueView ad they see – typically by clicking the “skip” button. Today’s consumers are highly-connected, easily-distracted internet-informed socialites who recognize when a company is creating value for them rather than just trying to shove a product or message down their throats. This doesn’t mean Millenials can’t be advertised to; but it does mean the way advertising communicates and engages them has fundamentally changed. When 18 to 24 year olds were asked “How do you want to a brand to interact with you?” in a study performed by Global Web Index, over 65% of respondents replied “Entertain me,” a response which occurred higher than “Keep me informed,” “Connect me with people” or “Provide me with interesting experiences.” Moreover, because video is such “leveraged communication” (if a picture is worth a thousand words, a video must be 100,000+?), the stakes for both success and failure are bigger as well as faster. A truly viral video is elusive – as well as marketing nirvana – but it’s a lot easier to create audience engagement magic and widespread social chatter with a recurring, character-driven video story viewers tune into episode after episode.
Generally, a broad range of recent success stories in branded video entertainment points toward five key themes in winning the battle for video engagement: (1) be authentic, (2) tell a compelling, recurring story, (3) manage content duration and pacing for maximum entertainment payload, (4) give audiences a way to get involved and participate if they want and (5) experiment; try new things. Particularly relevant (and good news) for marketers is the fact that audience’s social sharing of content happens irrespective of the presence or absence of branding and branded messages within the content. Additionally, highly engaged audiences do convert better, in many cases showing 300% higher ad click-through rates on high-quality web TV series compared to average industry pre-roll rates.
4. Humanizing the Brand Experience and Increasing Accessibility
Being more than just a brand is essential to the dialogue you maintain with our customers and social followers. Audiences today want to see the heart, people and characters behind the logo, and video marketing is the one of the best ways to achieve that. When Hubspot rallies its inbound team to perform a cover-rendition of Psy’s viral YouTube opus “Gangnam Style” or Pixability puts its team front and center in entertaining, informational skits on its YouTube channel, it demystifies the brand in an accessible way that enables audiences to enjoy an insider’s perspective.
3. Video Marketing Simultaneously Solidifies Your Inbound and Outbound Marketing Presence
Having a strong, joint outbound and inbound marketing presence is not just smart; in today’s digital marketing landscape it might as well be a necessary. Strong, video marketing allows for this to be achieved with a great deal of ease by generating and proliferating content that simultaneously broadcasts the brand experience and also draws in audiences around conversion destinations.
2. Trial & Error
In the old days of video marketing, brands could simply advertise their product on someone else’s content (for example, TV), because the content brought people’s captive attention to their message. But with traditional TV viewer growth stagnant, time-shifted TV becoming the status quo and 33-50% of TV viewers also consuming additional content on a second-screen device, brands need to embrace new content marketing approaches to bridge the engagement gap. According to the Ruder Finn Intent Index, not surprisingly 82% of people want to be entertained, 96% of people want to be educated, and 92% of people want to be participating in something meaningful. Put that together and it’s not surprising in hindsight that “This is Not Yellow” was a smash success.
But who could have predicted that? The great thing about digital video is that its cost structure and its medium makes experimentation and controlled tests with different content types, experiences and ecosystems a lot easier than, say, experimenting with Super Bowl Commercials. At ZoomTilt, our business centers around testing, piloting, analyzing and distributing a broad range of branded entertainment concepts before we advise our clients to make their media buy and serialize content. That way, video marketers have a lot more certainty around the brand experience they’re creating, the app integration(s) they want to run, as well as the ROI, engagement, reach and earned media outlook for the campaign.
1. Striking Gold: Content that Goes Viral
The holy grail of video marketing is seeing content catch on like wildfire and end up instantly spread all over the web within days. When this happens, a little-known content creator or brand can find themselves transformed into a cultural icon overnight. While it’s impossible to target “virality as a strategy,” gradually building a vested audience with steady, high-quality video content marketing certainly increases the chances that a specific video will catch and ignite. But rather than chasing a single, viral “home run,” steadily hitting singles and doubles – videos that collect tens of thousands of views, consistently broaden awareness of your brand’s message and increase your social reach – can not only supercharge the effectiveness of your content marketing efforts, it can set the stage for when that perfect storm of a video happens to come along:
With the new unveiling of Google+ communities, Google is bolstering community connectivity within its social media platform. While, for most, Google+ remains sparsely populated with active, engaged users, there’s one key reason why filmmakers and video creators (particularly anyone with a vested interest in the YouTube ecosystem) should care about Google+ Communities: The six letters that come before the “plus.” That’s right, Google effectively owns both search and YouTube, so content creators interested in elevated search discovery around their work should definitely consider spending a little more time trying to stir up activity around their content on Google+.
In a small step forward to help members of the currently fragmented creator community network more effectively and bring more search engine optimization (SEO) authority to their content, we’ve created the first Google+ community for web series creators, and we invite everyone to join the community today. Together, we can create a small hive of budding creative activity amidst the larger, less-traveled Google+ landscape.
Starting at 10pm ET / 7pm PT, many YouTube features will be unavailable as the world’s largest video hosting platform undergoes scheduled maintenance.
According to YouTube, multiple site features will be unavailable during maintenance, including:
- Commenting and liking
- Creating new playlists
- Starting a new livestream or Hangout on Air
Partners with Dropbox access will be able to drop videos in, but they won’t be processed until after maintenance is complete.
As a result, we encourage all creators in the YouTube ecosystem to delay uploading videos this afternoon and evening until the maintenance process is complete and full site functionality and audience engagement features are restored.
For more information, visit: http://support.google.com/youtube/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=1751952
Web series aren’t just a guy/gal with a camera, a couch and a vlog talk show anymore, and audiences and advertisers are taking notice. With brands like Ford, Ikea, Target, Yahoo and Intel spending millions annually creating original web entertainment on top of YouTube’s own premium content buys from Hollywood and networks like Machinima, demand for compelling, original entertainment is rising rapidly, and content creators are rising to the occasion.
This week, ZoomTilt debuts three new made-for-web TV comedy pilots: “The Pickup Chicks”, “Spycology”, and “Cool Justice”. Although the three comedies are starkly different shows – with backdrops ranging from Brooklyn bars to a top-secret Spy Academy to a 1970′s L.A. drug bust – they all have several qualities in common: memorable, unique characters, top-quality professional cinematography and studio-caliber story arc development. Following on the tradition established by recent web series standouts like “The Beauty Inside,” Warner Premiere’s “H+: The Digital Series” and “Dating Rules for My Future Self,” ZoomTilt’s first three shows coming out of the TV Reset Project webseries competition demonstrate that creative, compelling storytelling and community-building trumps big budgets in generating earned media and audience engagement.
The first new ZoomTilt pilot is romantic comedy “The Pickup Chicks” by Stacie Capone, which follows a trio of Brooklyn roomates-turned-entrepreneurs dealing with the unexpected success of their dating service for hopeless single guys:
The second show is “Cool Justice” by Todd Rulapaugh and Brian Groh, who play two larger-than-life 1970′s cops transported to modern day Los Angeles to help a beautiful heiress recover her missing inheritance:
The third show is “Spycology” by Tenth Gate Productions, where slacker spy Jack gets jolted by the threat of expulsion from Spy College and the arrival of an enigmatic new female transfer student. Can Jack harness his inner Bond before time runs out on his diploma hopes or his best buddy Tim’s hostage situation?
As both production equipment and video hosting costs continue to drop, knowledge transfer of production and editing expertise is accelerated through lightning fast internet data transfer and digital video demand continues to grow rapidly, traditional TV and “digital TV” will continue to converge and overlap, creating exciting new opportunities and avenues for content creators, advertisers, audiences and digital networks alike.
Christophor Rick is a well-accomplished individual. He holds a B.S. degree in molecular science, he served in the U.S. Navy, he’s taught in Europe and he’s interned with NASA (whoa), but what he is most known for is his career as a freelance writer. With his third book launching this December, Christophor Rick has made a career out of analyzing and reporting on online video content. It’s no surprise to us that he is the brains behind one of our finalist pilots for the TV Reset Project with his original concept and story: “Not So Super.”
In development since 2007, “Not So Super” is the story of Vince, a superhero currently undergoing a mid-life crisis who must set aside his insecurities and fight off the new super villain, Scandal, who threatens his home, Prime City.
“I have been a fan of comics for a long time and the thing that often struck me was that they were all overblown, artificial, larger-than-life personas and personalities, hard to relate to at times,’ says Rick. ‘Many common human issues were not addressed a lot of the time, so I wanted to make a more human hero who has real world problems that makes him easy to relate to and somewhat of an underdog at this point in his career.”
Since he is no stranger to the online video community we also asked Rick what he’s paying attention to out there in the webisode world and his picks are “Leap Year” from Geek & Sundry and Hulu’s “Battleground”, which takes place in Rick’s home state of Wisconsin.
Although this will be Rick’s first major video production he’s assembled a team of skilled, veteran entertainment professionals that will help guide the production while Rick concentrates on directing and seeing his story vision through.
“Having been around online video for the last five years, I know what I like and what I want, [less exactly] how to get there,” Rick admits.
We over here at ZoomTilt think that Christophor Rick has quite a future ahead of him as a creator and director. He is already well on his way and has an arsenal of other projects outside of “Not So Super” on the horizons.
Find Chistophor Rick on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/christophor.rick and follow him on Twitter, @ChristophorRick to keep up with “Not So Super.”
And while you’re at it give a big LIKE to “Not So Super” on Facebook — we are thinking that you don’t want to miss this pilot.
Thriller web series The Others is the brainchild of Douglas Stark. That his writing made it to ZoomTilt’s finals is no surprise given his background — Doug has written for Law & Order, Falcone (CBS), NBC/Universal and Bruckheimer, as well as written screenplays for hire. He’s been writing for about 25 years now, sometimes for Hollywood and sometimes for independent projects.
But writing is not his only work in the film world — he also worked as a producer for shows like E! and True Hollywood, as well as a director for his own shorts. He wrote and directed the short “Do Not Disturb” (a psychological thriller), which was named 2005′s best short by Fade In magazine.
“I feel like I’m working full-time as a writer and part-time as everything else,” Doug says. “I have the ability to create my own schedule, so my day is a revolving schedule of textbook business, writing work, and family (I have two kids). If you want to know ‘when do you find time to write’, the real answer is I don’t sleep (certainly not enough).”
Doug recommends that other writers “write what you must”, but also focus on finding ways to get those scripts produced. “Even if it’s DIY. At the end of the day, you’ll learn a lot more about what works and what doesn’t and you’ll have something to show.”
Editor’s note: The Others is a thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat. Each episode is a page turner. I’ve read the whole first season and am dying to know what happens after that! We can’t wait to see the pilot.