5 Successful Networking Tips for your Film Career
Networking is a critical part of any successful career in the film industry. Simply put, networking is the process of making professional connections and building relationships with other professionals in the industry. These connections can be extremely helpful in furthering your career, as they can provide you with access to important resources and opportunities. In order to be successful at this, there are a few key things to keep in mind, so check out this simple and easy networking tips.
Attend events with other film professionals
There are plenty of networking events for filmmakers if you know where to look, especially if you’re based in London. One great tip is to check out meetup.com. You can search for filmmaking groups in your area and see if any of them are hosting upcoming events. Additionally, many film festivals have networking events specifically for filmmakers. If you’re interested in attending one of these festivals, be sure to look for networking opportunities on their website or through their social media channels. By following these networking tips, you’ll be sure to find plenty of opportunities as a filmmaker.
Every month the BFI holds its networking mixer, which is a great opportunity to meet other film professionals and discuss potential collaborations. There are also regular networking events hosted by organisations like Film London and Creative England. Attendance at these events is usually free or very cheap, so there’s no excuse not to go. Raindance hosts regular networking events, the next one is June 27th and you can book your ticket here.
Volunteering at film festivals can also be a great way to meet people in the industry and make a good impression. Try to attend as many screenings as you can that have Q&As, you never know when you’ll get to chatting with the filmmakers or others in the audience. When you attend these events you can put all the following networking tips into practice.
Have an online presence
In today’s digital age, that networking often happens online. Platforms like LinkedIn and Twitter provide easy ways to connect with other professionals in your field, share your work, and build your reputation. Additionally, many film festivals and industry events now have an online component, so even if you can’t physically attend an event, you can still participate and make some valuable connections.
Of course, networking offline is still important, but having an active online presence is a great way to supplement your efforts and reach a wider range of people. So if you’re not already active online, now is the time to get started with these networking tips for a strong online presence:
• Create a professional website or blog: This is a great way to showcase your work and let others know what you’re up to. Be sure to include contact information so people can easily get in touch with you.
• Use social media: Platforms like Twitter and Facebook are great for networking. Follow people in the industry and join relevant groups. Use hashtags to search for people with similar interests.
• Connect with other professionals on LinkedIn: LinkedIn is a great resource for networking and finding new opportunities. Join relevant groups and participate in discussions. Use the site’s search function to find people in your industry. I recently contacted various video production companies in London to great effect.
Make sure to keep all these platforms up to date and be consistent with your online activity.
Having an online presence is essential for networking as a film professional. By following these networking tips, you can make sure you’re connecting with the right people and putting your best foot forward.
Filmmakers, sell yourself
The next in our list of networking tips for filmmakers, is how to present yourself. Networking can be a great way to make new business connections and find new opportunities. However, it’s important to networking in the right way. When you’re networking, make sure to focus on your success stories and highlight how valuable you are. This will help you stand out from the crowd and make a good impression. networking is all about making connections, so it’s important to be clear about what you bring to the table. By highlighting your successes, you’ll be more likely to make new connections that can lead to new opportunities.
So next time you’re networking, remember to focus on your successes and value proposition. It could make all the difference. When meeting people, make sure you don’t undersell yourself. We all carry a bit of imposter syndrome and hesitate to be honest about our successes, in case we sound braggy. Don’t be afraid of this! Present a success story that is relevant to your conversation to show your abilities and value. However, don’t overindulge, keep it short and sweet. This sounds like one of the most simple networking tips, but can take a while to apply to your conversations. As a video production company in London, we face some stiff competition, so keeping it snappy is the trick.
Stay in touch and be consistent
Once you make a new connection, make sure you stay in touch, it’s one of the most important networking tips for filmmakers. So many business cards are passed around only to be forgotten about or lost the next day. So contact them soon after meeting them and try to make a plan, such as meeting up for a coffee, attending another event together or having a video call to discuss some film ideas. This ensures you don’t lose touch, but make sure you don’t just contact them when you need something, like a job or a favour.
Treat your new industry connections like people not opportunities. Being connected with them on LinkedIn and other social media allows you to see when their work finds new successes, when they’re promoted or experience another milestone in life, so you can congratulate them and check in on how they are. If they are someone you hope to collaborate with on a specific project, make sure to keep them reminded of it, without harassing them with constant messages, and keeping the other networking tips in mind when reaching out.
Filmmakers are people persons
Of course you can’t force yourself to be extroverted if you’re naturally not, but approaching people is essential to networking, so this is one of the most important networking tips. One of the most important aspects of networking is confident socialising. This means being able to walk into a room full of strangers and strike up conversations with ease. It also means being comfortable making small talk and building rapport with new people. Confident socialising requires both outgoingness and engagement.
Outgoingness is the ability to approach others and engage in conversation. Engagement is the ability to keep a conversation going by showing interest and investing in the other person. When networking, it is important to remember that everyone is there for the same reason: to make connections and build relationships. As such, confident socialisers are usually the ones who are most successful at networking. By making an effort to be outgoing and engaging, you can quickly build a strong network of contacts.
Make sure to show genuine interest in people, this is the central message of Dale Carnegie’s 1936 book, “How to Win Friends and Influence People”. Ask people about themselves and show curiosity about their lives, interests and work. Filmmakers love to talk about themselves. Don’t just talk shop, keep all these networking tips in mind.
If you found this networking tips helpful, we have more advice to offer. For more film, TV and media industry tips, check out our other articles on the Nostairway website, such as these:
Nostairway Creative is a film and video production company in London, proudly servicing SMEs and corporations for 22 years.