S&T Success Story: Finding the Perfect Partners

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THE BOWMAKERS director Ward Serrill premiered his film in 2019 and was looking forward to a theatrical release in 2020…and then Covid hit. Using Show&Tell’s Partner-Driven Distribution approach, Ward and his team offered nonprofit organizations in the classical music world virtual screenings of the film. By giving these entities a valuable way to raise money and engage donors and supporters during a time when live events weren’t possible, the team was able to drum up significant revenue and ignite interest in the film.

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“Show&Tell helped me reimagine how to get my work out directly to my film’s core audience during these unprecedented times.”

Ward Serrill, director of THE BOWMAKERS

After premiering THE BOWMAKERS in 2019, director Ward Serrill was looking forward to a healthy promotional schedule for the film in 2020, between festival appearances and theatrical release. And then the global pandemic came along.

Faced with the necessity of completely reworking his film’s distribution strategy, Ward and team decided to use Show&Tell’s Partner-Driven Distribution approach. Because his core audience was made up of organizations in the classical music world, he appealed to them with an easy way to host virtual screenings, citing them as a mutually-beneficial option for engaging their audiences during a time when live events were impossible.

The virtual approach to screenings has proven to be a hit. Partners have been excited to offer relevant, curated content to their audiences, and appreciative of the revenue possible from ticket sales. (The first screening of THE BOWMAKERS alone generated $7,000 in revenue.) Additionally, Serrill and team have found that they are continuing to drum up interest in screenings of the film long after the relatively short promotional window they’d anticipated.

THE BOWMAKERS team plans to continue their classical music virtual event tour throughout 2012. They’ll undoubtedly continue to add to their audience and get paid along the way.

“Virtual screenings enable me to connect directly with my target audience and to bring in cash flow,” said Serril. “They have also given me a special opportunity to meaningfully interact with viewers remotely.”

For a deep dive into the success of THE BOWMAKERS, please read the recent bulletin by our friend, distribution strategist Peter Broderick.

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