We have looked into Ning which could possibly be the platform we want to use for the main website of our Nicci French transmedia experience. It is a platform which focuses on getting the consumers/fans active and making it possible to build a community. Our website on Ning will be a place on which fans can get together and discuss anything and everything of their Nicci French experience on the forums, and the site will be the place where we will distribute content (e.g. teasers, promo videos, “behind the scenes” videos). This could also be most definitely be the platform that we can use to publish Frieda Klein’s diary and the webisode-extension that we are planning to create.
And with Ning, integrating the franchise into the Facebook, Twitter and YouTube spheres will be easy and this thus makes it easy for fans to share and spread their experiences and maybe even self-generated content. Ning is an extremely professional site and has alot of options and possibilities that we can benefit from for our transmedia franchise, so we are most definitely considering this tool for the foundation of our main website.
UPDATE – Business Plan (In Progress)
Our main medium is film, where we will turn Nikki French’s novel Blue Monday into a movie of the psychological thriller genre. In order to get financing for the film we plan to work with big studios like Warner Bros and M&M, who have worked on other similar film projects. For the soundtrack of the film, we plan on approaching new unsigned musicians and offer them exposure in the film and soundtrack in exchange for their songs; we will also offer them a percentage of the royalties depending on our success at the box office.
Based on our analysis of HBO/Campfire’s business model for the release of the television series Game of Thrones, we have decided to utilize their use of social media in the campaign. HBO tried to capture the attention of fans from the original book and encouraged them to share their experience on various social networking sites. We plan to do the same, by making sure our marketing campaign is fully integrated with social media sites.
Our first promotional medium is an inter-active diary app, written by the main character in the book/movie -Frieda Klein. This diary will give users better insights into the mind and private life of Frieda. We plan to use a combination of pictures, text, audio clips and videos (using the actress who will play Klein in the film). Fans will also have the opportunity to tweet questions to Freida Klein’s twitter account and will be answered through the diary. All of the new posts in the diary will also be shared as links on Freida Klein’s official Facebook competition. We plan to get a coffee company such as Starbucks to sponsor the app. When a fan downloads the app they will receive a special discount for a coffee at Starbucks. We will also include some Starbucks product placement in the diary.
The second promotional medium is a poster design competition. This will be announced to fans on the Facebook page and the Diary; they will be invited, through a personal video from the actress of Freida Klein, to take part in a competition to design the promo poster for the film. The winner will get a VIP weekend in London at the premier of the film. This competition and prize will be sponsored by a hotel, the hotel will receive advertisement through the competition as well as the online diary. The poster design competition will be done in the form of a Facebook app, where pre selected images/backgrounds/texts can be mixed and matched by the users. The posters will be voted on by the public, fans can share their designs with their friends and families and ask them for their votes.
UPDATE – Funding and Financing
Because we want to use primarily the social media in our transmedia franchise, the costs will be fairly low in comparison to, for example, creating a full-fledged game. We want to use ShoutEm.com to create the web-based diary app, which extends to iPhones, Androids and iPads, and having an app created by them, it would cost $450. However, we are looking for lucrative deals with sponsors, who might be interested in product placement and us offering discounts at their shops/restaurants/café’s , like having all the readers of the Diary receive discount at the Starbucks, because that is where Frieda always gets her coffee. From these kinds of collaborations we are aiming to get as much money as possible to cover the costs. Furthermore, one of the goals of the poster competition is to save costs on designing it ourselves. But for the poster competition application within Facebook, the production and design of it would probably also cost around $450, but having it on Facebook would be for free. And for this application/competition we are as well looking for sponsors who would want to provide the prices for the winner, for example bottles of Moët for during the premiere and a hotel stay at some lavish hotel afterwards. By having them sponsor the process, they would also receive some (free) advertising.
We want to keep the costs of the diary app as low as possible, because out of the extensions, the movie extension of Blue Monday will be the extension that will need the most funds – the movie has to be of the same high quality as any other big movie production, as we do not want the movie to be rated as an “amateur flick”. We are, as mentioned before, releasing the movie initially to the British audience, but if the movie proves to be a success, which we are aiming it to be, the movie will be of the same calibre as any other big movie production and we could successfully transfer it to the worldwide screen.
We are not relying on any sponsoring or audience-paid strategies, neither on freemium or crowdfunding, as the costs of the production of the movie will be too high, that these strategies will not have any added value to minimizing the costs.
For the funding of the movie, we are thus relying on movie and production to finance the movie, and possibly also on private investments. The costs of the production will most likely be covered by the revenues, so the studios and the investors will also be paid back with the profits and royalties tied to the movie. Looking at other film adaptations of books, like the Dutch movie “Komt een Vrouw bij de Dokter”, the production costs were around $4.730.000, and it ended up grossing nationally nearly $11.780.000, which leaves a staggering profit. The movie was a local production that did not require any major special effects whatsoever and that is probably also what will be the case of our adaptation of the Nicci French novel. Costs will be low because it will be shot locally in London and the storyline, cinematic wise, is fairly straightforward with not too much hassle.
If we look at the movie “Män som hatar kvinnor”, the original, Swedish, film adaptation of Stieg Larson’s Millennium trilogy book “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo”, the budget of the movie was $13.000.00, and it ended up grossing $104.395.170 (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, 2009), after going global. This is what we are also aiming for with Blue Monday: we want to start off locally in the United Kingdom, and if it is successful enough, then we want to launch it worldwide so that we can try and generate the highest possible profit for the movie. What has worked for Stieg Larson could most definitely also work for Nicci French, as both of the books are from a very popular genre.
The costs of production will be relatively low in comparison to other movie productions, just like the costs of the production of the apps, so the whole project would probably come to cost around $6.500.000 in total, including other traditional advertising (posters, abris, TV commercials) and online advertising ([Facebook] banners, Spotify commercials).
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2009). (n.d.). IMDb – Movies, TV and Celebrities. Retrieved November 2, 2012, from http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1132620/
UPDATE – Prototypes
We created a prototype for the web-based diary application and of how the mobile phone version of the app would look like
– The mobile version of the app
UPDATE – Timeline
Our timeline for the platform releases