Branding for Screenwriters


No I don’t mean placing a red hot iron bar on your rump.

BRANDING is a marketing term used to define who you are as a screenwriter (identity) and where you meet a need in the marketplace.

It’s derived from psychologists who study the way we learn and form relationships between people and feelings, objects and experiences. How often have you heard “you’ll always have a good time with person A” or  “bad things always happen around person B”?

Everyday, you have a chance to express yourself and manifest your brand and boost your screenwriting career. Film industry professionals can categorize you based on your essence, values and what you represent.

Brand manifestation and reinforcement can be through email, telephone or speech. We do it every day through our actions.

How To Build Your Screenwriter Brand

REPUTATION – What precedes you? What have you achieved? Who are your associates? What is your body of work? What do other people say about you?

IMAGE – Your look and feel. Make it coherent, consistent, compelling, crisp and clear. How are you perceived in the marketplace? Raunchy comedy writer or earnest period drama writer?

MEANING – What is your relationship to your audience? There are verbal and non-verbal sociological contracts with your audience. eg. intuitive, funny, warm, abrasive. How do other people describe you in the marketplace. Be authentic.

INSTRUMENTAL VALUES – What we bring into our lives. What’s important to you? What’s the difference between who we are and how we are perceived?

When producers are greenlighting projects and looking for writers, they use elements of branding to narrow their search. Which writers write great jokes or car chases? Which write snappy dialog that pops?

Early on in your screenwriting career, screenwriters are advised to write several movie scripts in one genre, partly to improve their craft and also to create their brand in the marketplace. Diversifying too much early on in your career can be detrimental to your brand.

Go forth and flourish!

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