From the Youth Media Alliance:
Discover some distribution secrets through the YMA blog of this week. Kate Sanagan, Partner of Picture Box Distribution, will certainly make you smile with its distribution lessons.
By: Kate Sanagan
Let’s face it, you don’t like us. Well, you like us sometimes; when we bring you a quality show for your channel or a great US deal with good money on the table. But mostly, we are your annoying friend, your unpleasant itch, your Achilles’ heel. We are the distributor and you screen our calls, for better or worse.
We actually like our jobs. We get to work with creative people, selling engaging product and discussing interesting ideas. But the reality is that most of the time we are the balancing act between producers and broadcasters, trying to make sure the needs of both sides are met. It’s not easy, and sometimes we excel and sometimes we don’t. In more than a decade since the inception of Picture Box, we’ve learned important lessons along the way, and lucky for you, we’re in the mood to share.
Here are the top 10 lessons we’ve learned as content distributors:
1. Make sure you have a thick skin and don’t take things personally. It’s not your fault HBO passed on that sure-fire hit from Canada about depressed dogs giving makeovers to one-eyed cats in a wedding cake shop in Pittsburgh. Well, unless you didn’t properly sell the buyer on the merits of such a show. Then it’s your fault.
2. Know the show you are selling. Watch it, become a fan of it, be able to talk about it at length.
3. Know your buyer. Don’t pitch Dora the Explorer to Adult Swim.
4. “No” can sometimes mean “not right now”. Programming appetites change, as do the specific buyers. A no today could turn into a yes tomorrow given the right circumstances.
5. Get creative! Translate some scripts, give an episode the film look, strategize about new ways to pitch the show. Sometimes buyers need you to prove why your show is right for them.
6. Just don’t get too creative. Don’t pitch Peter Moss in the airplane bathroom line in 2002, somewhere over the Atlantic Ocean. Regardless of whether your boss is urging you to do so. Just. Please. Don’t.
7. Don’t burn any bridges. This is a small industry: the producer you have an argument with today might end up being your buyer tomorrow. Life’s too short to have a fight about television anyway.
8. Eat before you drink, or at least, eat before you drunk-pitch. And while we’re at it: don’t rely on drunk-pitching as your primary strategy. It doesn’t work.
9. Surround yourself with a good team. A good distribution team sells programming. Also: these are the people who you will want on your side to survive the zombie apocalypse, so consider that as well. Always, always consider the zombies.
10. Say please and thank you. Even if you don’t feel like it, say it anyway.
To see the original post, visit: http://www.ymamj.org/pdf/ksanagan.pdf
All News Updates
- Distribution Lessons from Picture Box
- Picture Box Sells The Liquidator to Europe
- Picture Box to Bring CHIRP to the World
- New Establishment First Reveal: Marilyn Kynaston and Kate Sanagan
- Save Your Seat for MIPCanuck 2012!
- Picture Box Packs New Reality Shows for MIPCOM 2012
- WIFT–T Announces New Mentorship Initiative in Partnership with Picture Box Distribution
- Picture Box to Represent TVOKids Programs Worldwide
- Here Comes the Brides: Picture Box Sells Brides of Beverly Hills Internationally
- Picture Box Takes Anna and Kristina on Worldwide Tour
- Picture Box Racks Up Sales on Summer Home
- Picture Box Sells Til Debt Do U$ Part to China
- Picture Box Picks Up Way Off Broadway
- Picture Box Brings Popular Weight Loss Series to the US
- Picture Box Brings The Brides of Beverly Hills to TLC
- Picture Box Picks Up Brides of Beverly Hills
- Picture Box Announces Guinea Pig to Premiere on Hulu
- Picture Box Goes on Vacation With Summer Home
- OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network Picks Up Anna and Kristina: Picture Box Distribution
- Picture Box Acquires New Cross-Platform Preschool Series
- Picture Box Announces New Addition to the Company
- CNBC Orders Up More Debt
- Buyers Peek Into Picture Box’s Grocery Bag
- Lifestyle and Kids Programming Selling in Asia and Australasia