One of the largest film events in the world, the 63rd edition of the Berlinale, staged at multiple venues across Berlin, wrapped up its 11-day run this past Sunday.
I have followed this hybrid trade and public event closely since attending it in 2010 and want to share some thoughts on the “Books at Berlinale” feature, organized in cooperation with the Frankfurt Book Fair, as it is an excellent play on cross-industry marketing.
Designed to “bring the publishing and film worlds closer together,” “Books at Berlinale” consists of rights holders (publishers or literary agents) pitching selected novels to film producers. The pitching event is followed by a breakfast during which each publisher or agent has their own table so they can talk directly with interested producers. The selected projects are also published in a catalogue handed out to all attending producers.
I like these types of cross-industry marketing programs, and use this tactic with my agency’s clients for several reasons...
1) They can provide more value to important segments of your audience by enhancing networking and deal-making opportunities with other related industries.
For example, the “Books at Berlinale” enables film producers to speak with publishers and literary agents, see live pitches and potentially option film rights directly.
“We are very pleased that ‘Books at Berlinale’ has become a real networking highlight between the book and film industries,” said Festival Director Dieter Kosslick.
2) They can expand your footprint and increase attendance by engaging a new audience outside your traditional visitor universe, but close enough for there to be synergies.
3) They can provide another platform for competitive differentiation by creating unique cross-industry audience blends that enable your visitors to discover new opportunities and cultivate relationships not possible at other events in your space.
4) They can protect your event from competitors who may try to serve potentially valuable niches on the outside edges of your event... offerings that may start small but could eventually grow and start grabbing visitors and dollars that would otherwise have been yours.
Cristopher Levy is managing partner of Encore Media Partners. Encore is an audience strategy, marketing and media buying agency covering traditional, digital and mobile platforms, which specializes in local, national and global trade and consumer shows, exhibitions and conferences. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.