Web series: Giving context to your content

Jorja Watts February 9th, 2017
Written by Jorja Watts
So you’ve made a web series, doco or film and made it freely available to the world through YouTube or Vimeo. You’ve done a solid job, you’re proud of your achievement, people are going to love it. Time to sit back, relax and watch that view count (and career) blow up, right? 

Unfortunately it’s not that simple. Just because you’re accessible, doesn’t mean people can find you- or even know you exist.

300hrs of new content is uploaded every MINUTE to YouTube alone. That’s almost half a million hours a day… To say your project is a little fish in a big pond is an understatement. It’s an infinitesimal fish in a vast ocean. If you want to get those eyeballs on your content, you need to transgress being online, to building an online presence. In a future article I’ll get into how to do this, but before we can talk about how your project relates to your audience, we need to talk about YOU.

It’s so easy to get consumed by your project. It’s the same with any business. You’re so ingrained within it that you don’t know where your work ends and you begin, and you lose site of the bigger picture and ability to view it from an outside perspective.

So here’s some fundamentals to think about and questions to ask yourself to help get your head in the game.

 

VISUALISE:

Firstly, GOALS. What is the purpose of your project? To gain a fanbase that wants to see more of you? Do you want to get a message across? Showcase your talent to leverage your career? To go viral?

If you answered “go viral” – I hate to break it to you, but that’s not a goal, that’s a fantasy, one very unlikely to be realised, and also a story for another day. Re-frame that fantasy into clocking some impressive views reaching an impressive number of people, and you’ve got yourself a reasonable goal – and an achievable one.

 

CONTEXTUALISE:

You need to treat your project as a product. Your Web Series, Film or Doco, is a “thing”, that serves a purpose, created to be consumed, therefore it’s a product. You also need to treat your project as a brand. It tells a story, evokes an emotion, creates perception and opinion in the mind of its consumers, therefore it’s a brand – and it needs a well-defined, consistent personality, visuals and a voice to express its identity.

 

REALISE:

Products and brands have target markets. Nothing in this world is for everybody. Especially Film & TV content. Who is your audience? Why should they watch your content? What are they going to get out of it? The answers to these questions will define your target market – and determine where and how to reach them.

 

Now, let all this sink in and percolate. Once you get your head wrapped around these concepts you’ll be able to move onto creating, curating and tailoring an online presence that serves a purpose, and gets results.