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As part of the commitment to excellence and in an ongoing effort to set the Micro-budget Promotion Program teams up for success, many of this year’s participants were invited to attend a one –day intensive digital marketing workshop in Toronto at the end of October. Directors, writers and producers from across the country were brought together to spend the day with digital marketing strategist and expert, Annelise Larson. Annelise worked with the group to help them learn how to define, find, attract and engage their audiences and work toward strategic and sustainable business models that fit into the transmedia world.

The next day the group continued with their education and exposure to marketing expertise when they attended the second annual Marketing Summit, a one-day conference dedicated to all things marketing and entertainment, bringing leading industry experts and CMOs from major brands together to help producers and other industry stakeholders craft smarter and more sophisticated marketing strategies for individual projects or small businesses.

Here is what some of the workshop participants had to say about their experience:

“We thought it was a great opportunity to get everyone across Canada together and hear their unique stories – we were really impressed by the breadth of genres, styles and marketing approaches across all the teams. There is a real opportunity in the ability to support micro-budget content, an area we believe is going to be increasingly more important in the world of longer-form content, particularly in the realm of comedy. “– Eli Batalion, Writer/Director/Producer, 3.0 (Quebec)

“What an inspiring journey and learning experience! To have such an opportunity to not only express our art but to be so well supported through the process is extraordinary. We’re so thankful to have Telefilm on our side! Merci beaucoup!” – Corey Loranger, Producer, Abigaëlle et le date coaching (Alberta)

“Having access to funding through the Talent Fund and Telefilm is invaluable, but even more important, I think, was the chance we were given to collectively support each other as filmmakers and creators in more personal setting. Sitting in a room with the other successful candidates of this round of microbudget felt like such a massive accomplishment, a breakthrough for our brand and the information shared and discussed gave us an even more solid foundation to help us move ahead with our project, The Lovely Witches Club webseries. I highly recommend the microbudget program and this evolution of connection and can’t say enough about the enthusiasm and positive feedback we’ve gained from Telefilm and everyone involved. Thank you for your faith in us! – Patti Larsen Director/Co-writer, The Lovely Witches Club (Prince Edward Island)

“The Digital Media Boot Camp was an incredibly illuminating experience, revolving around hands-on understanding of audience and how to reach them effectively. Having a wealth of tangible strategies and low-cost ways of getting content in front of an audience is all any producer can ask for and this session put those tools in our hands. And not just for our current projects, but also in the long-term. I’m already formulating digital marketing strategies for properties that aren’t even in script form yet. As well, it informed the scripts we’ll write in the future, allowing us to create more marketable properties that lend themselves to the new wave of communication and social media options available to filmmakers. I can’t wait to put it all to use!” – Matt Watterworth, Director, In Plainview (Alberta)

“As an emerging indigenous film-maker in the Talent Fund supported Micro-budget program, I was thrilled to attend the Toronto Marketing Bootcamp. I walked into the two day event with only vague ideas about who my audience would be and how I was going to find them, and I left with real plan and a much deeper sense of my power to use the digital landscape to distribute and market my film.” – Allan Hopkins, Writer/Director/Producer, The Road Trip (British Columbia)

“The bootcamp for the micro-budget teams allowed me to understand the importance not only in working with a social media strategist for the promotion of our project, but also to understand the work of the strategist. This is crucial in the future of our project as we need to rely on social media for promotion and too often without knowing how to use them to their full potential.”- Élise Beaudry-Ferland, Producer, Talent (Saskatchewan)

“We really appreciated to be included and meet the other filmmakers. Telefilm has been very supportive and it was great to get to know the people behind the scenes. It was educational to hear from past Micro-budget filmmakers and network with people at the Playback Marketing Summit.”-Gina Haraazti, Director/Writer and Michael Massicotte, Producer, Geek Girls (Quebec)

“The Marketing Bootcamp hosted by Telefilm was a great opportunity to learn and plan how to market our film. It’s an important aspect of the project, but one I do not have a lot of experience with. It really helped to have professional guidance and feedback, as well as meet the other micro-budget teams and learn about their projects and how they plan to promote them.”-Gaitlyn Grabham, Producer, Firecrackers (Ontario)

“Attending the bootcamp gave us more of a confidence that we are going in the right direction.   ”-Tim Rayne, Director/Writer, The Capital (New Brunswick)