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Documentary and Movie Sidelines for Nature Organizations

Marketing is the merger of venues, groups and products/services. The cross-pollination of opportunities can help you tap new market niches, or turn your product into addition revenue streams.

Nature videos, features and shorts can be developed to meet your natural resource mission in several ways. The content differs based on the goal and the audience you want to reach, but the technologies also differ a bit by the intended audience -- and the budget.

Even small nature centers can afford to develop documentaries, training videos, shorts and exhibit clips that help tell your story in the closest storytelling format to match the way our brain works. Moving pictures capture attention, our imagination, and our wonder. Whether you want to demonstrate the variety of wildlife and plants found on your site to your docents in training -- or want to package a video to sell through your gift store, you're thinking the way your clients think! People want movement, color, sound and drama! Motion pictures deliver that emotional and intellectual appeal.

Here are some ideas to consider that come out of the movie industry.

  • International markets
  • Festivals,
  • Hosting centers for members to conduct business, network and obtain essential tools and information.
  • Calendar
  • Special events
  • Seminars
  • Conferences focused on topics of interest to industry professionals.
  • Cable transmission
  • Private copy sales
  • Video rental
  • Educational
  • Theatrical box office
  • Public performance
  • Television
  • Public performance video
  • Radio
  • Television
  • Theatrical use of their product worldwide.
  • Internet - text and audio, video and interactive
  • Telephone
Sideline products can be developed for any of those venues, plus a few othes. Sideline just means a product that is not in your main flow of revenue. You can tap new markets by developing your content into products using other media or marketed in a slightly different way.

One example is the cross promotional work by movie companies. They have developed lucrative sideline products beyond the theatrical film to include some or all of the following:

License the name and images for toys, collectibles, lunchboxes, stickers, clothing, postcards, etc.

Develop the film score into music releases, sheet music, music videos, and even karaoke!

Create and promote related books about the actors, the story, the technical behind the scenes work, the making-of the movie, and even comic books, magazines, graphic novels and historical perspective or fan books for the youth library/education market.

Sell the rights to the movie to the many splinters of the movie industry such as cable TV, network TV, video rentals, video sales, around the world distribution rights, screenings in hotels, health facilities, schools, and churches. There are many subsidiary markets for motion pictures...both fiction and documentaries.

Carolyn Allen is a video producer with experience in scriptwriting, digital filmmaking and packaging finished projects for indie distribution. Call to discuss your project's feasibility and how you can make a digital motion picture support your mission.