What a Potential Investor Looks For In a Film Project – Part 1

proven-track-record-headerIn this 3-part series, I want you to gain an understanding of what potential film investors are looking for, how to attract investors, and how to keep them satisfied long after the returns come rolling in so in the long term you can build an investor base that you can use over and over again. In each post I want you to walk away with at least one immediately actionable strategy that you can use to help you attract investors to your film.

Most indie filmmakers have a really really really hard time getting people to invest in their films.  They put their projects out there and then wonder why no one is biting.  And then they complain that no one is interested in their project.  Well, that’s not exactly true.  Today you’re going to learn that attracting potential investors to your film is not as difficult as many people make it out to be.  The key is knowing what potential investors are looking for, and giving it to them!  If you know what they want, then make sure that’s what you give them.  The problem is that filmmakers oftentimes faiI to understand that they aren’t delivering their film packages to investors in an attractive “package” with a pretty bow tied neatly around it.  Many times the content of the packages are missing key parts, and/or are just poorly made.

There are some very simple and powerful strategies you can employ to make your package look attractive and that’s what I’m here to talk to you about.

When putting together the assets that are going to attract investors to your film package, some of the questions you need to ask yourself are:  Why would this person invest in my project?  What motivates him or her?  What would be the most persuasive thing you can say or do to get him or her on board?

It’s amazing to me that people think they’re ready to go around asking people for money for their projects before they even have a clear picture of how much they’ll need, where that money is going to go, how they are going to make the investment back, and how the investor will recoup their investment.  Would you invest YOUR hard-earned cash in someone who can’t answer those questions?  No!

I’ve come up with my list of the top 12 things that a potential investor looks for in a film project.  For the purpose of this blog series, I’m going to focus on 3 of them.

Today, I want to talk about a Credible Track Record.  This is one of the first things potential investors look for. Who are you? What have you done before? What have your producing partners done before? What has your leading cast done before? Have you ever managed a production on this scale before?  The answers to these questions are very important.

Investors want to make sure that you are experienced and have surrounded yourself with a team that can execute the business plan.  Why would anyone want to invest say $1 million in a first-time filmmaker who has never done a film of this scale before? (Note to first-timers,  start with a low-budget film project.  They are easier to get funded.) But don’t let that stop you from seeking investors, if you are new to the game and have no credible track record, you can still get your film financed.  This is where your raw talent, enthusiasm and strong business acumen come into play.  Be frank and upfront. You’re going to have to convince investors that you CAN pull it off, you have done all your prep in great detail, you know the market, you have surrounded yourself with a talented and experienced team (both cast and crew).

Investors in films want to make sure that first and foremost they won’t look like an idiot in backing a total loser. If you’re a beginner without a credible track record, you are going to have to make them overlook your lack of pedigree and be swept away with your vision and the irresistible team and package you’ve put together.

Tomorrow I’ll talk about the second thing a potential investor looks at in a film that will determine whether or not they are attracted to the project.  Stay tuned …

 

  • June 30, 2014

Leave a Reply 4 comments

VIRGINIA BRIGHT - June 30, 2014 Reply

Thanks Tanya for your insight I Agree in all you mentioned…it´s very true… 🙂

Jeff - June 30, 2014 Reply

Ok Tanya…I have to admit, I couldn’t answer the three initial investor questions. I have lots of energy, vision and enthusiasm but no damn plan! Thanks for the insight. Anxiously waiting for Part 2. jb

david - June 30, 2014 Reply

Thanks.very informative 🙂

Peggy Roger-Carey - July 6, 2014 Reply

Love your posts on getting investors. A friend of mine forwarded your information. Love to get ongoing information sent to me. Thank you! Peg Carey

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