Friday, June 23, 2006

Brand New Outreach Opportunity for Comics, Don't Get Left Behind!

My God, 8 weeks since my last post, yeah, good thing this ain't paying the bills!
Well here's a bit of what I've been working on in the interim.

For those keeping score, you know I hold publishers and creators responsible for creating demand for their product, just like any other successful business. Too many believe that their work will speak for itself (and truth be told it often does, though not in the way the creator hoped!) and many others shirk their responsibilities under the guise of expense while others who find the ducats to do some marketing often waste it by trying to go toe to toe with Marvel & DC in Wizard, CBG, Previews, Newsarama...

Ok,ok... So what's a poor bastards creating the creme de la creme of graphic literature to do? Where and how can someone with limited resources grab folks by the shorthairs and convert them into fans of their work? If you're reading this then you already know... THE INTERNET!

I've already discussed the Street Team Concept in the Publishers Post but know I'll give you another tool, one that has yet to be used by any other comic and one that can give you almost unfettered access to hundreds of thousands of potential readers/fans.

I'm working with a group of guys to create a comic driven content channel in their new online environment called VMIX.COM . They host user uploaded content in a variety of genre and format, much of it designed to attract wireless users in addition to computer users. Wanting to get beyond the cell phone "kicked in the nuts" type of videos, VMix is partnering with high profile entertainment companies that will act as anchor tenants, delivering loads of users looking for cool new content and ready and willing to spread your message if they like what they see.

From their About Us page:

The problem with any work of creativity is finding an audience.

The Internet and the Web have a history of taking people's creative works and making them available to the world.

First was the world of text and images. Anyone with a server and a little expertise could put up their web pages and communicate. Search engines like Yahoo and then Google made it easy to find. As time went on, the technology got easier and easier to the point where the computers became invisible and publishing your thoughts became no more difficult than writing an email.

Sites, like the original, took the Internet in new directions. No longer were people constrained to words and images. Sound filled the net. Every musician had a free way to publish their art and the world could easily find them. Podcasting took it a step further. It wasn't any longer just about the music. Soon everyone was a radio broadcaster, a talk show host or a news
commentator. No longer did you have to find the music, the music and the stories found you.

And yet, still something was missing. We have words, images, sound but no video. OK, sure we have video from CNN, MTV and MSN but where is MY video. We want the ability to share with the most powerful medium that exists. And we want it to be easy. And we want it to be free.

Why video? Video tells a story in a way that is more powerful than anything else. Instead of the message being packaged and processed, as it needs to be for television, the World Wide Web's democratic messaging will be something entirely different. It will be personal. It will be silly, sad, exciting, boring and sometimes very powerful. But when the video is relevant to the audience it will become the perfect storytelling device. Video is a true chance to capture moments of our life and share it with the world.

And so was born the idea of vMix was founded by artists, musicians and executives from the original

At we are creating that venue for the artist in all of us.
- Greg Kostello, CEO, vMix Media Inc.

Any of this sound familiar?

So here's what I'm proposing. I want creators to put together animated trailers for their project(s). Heck here's an opportunity for you guys to enlist your army/street teams, send out a call to action for your fans to create their own trailers and reward the best with some cool schwag.

Not grasping the concept of a Comic Book Trailer, take a gander at these:

I'll try to add more links later or folks who know of some can post the below by posting a comment.

Crossgen's Comics on the Web was another great example where they scanned in full issues and manipulated the images and captions.

This is a great way to reach out to animation/movie fans who may not currently be comic fans and lets face it the number of people not reading comics is probably a magnitude higher than those who are. So instead of continuing to fight for a fairly finite number of customers with every other Tom, Dick and Larry, producing a comic, why not hop outside the box and start working the folks nobody has dibs on... yet?

Interested? My boy Damian says that they can accomodate almost any length video but I'd urge you to concentrate on high powered intense 2-4 minute trailers, you can't afford to alienate the wireless web and/or dial-up users. It will also make it easier to rotate fresh pieces on a regular basis.

Any tech questions can be directed to Damian Hagger, tell him Robert @ Comickaze sent you. So whadda ya got?


  1. Hey Robert -
    Followed you here from the Engine and I thought I'd take the opportunity to pass along the current link for my web trailer: . It's for my current OGN, "A Trip to Rundberg"... Thanks for the heads up on Vmix - it looks cool and I'm excited about checking ot out...

  2. Here's a link to the web site for "The Last Sin of Mark Grimm". Writer M. Sean McManus created the trailer from interior artwork for the mini series.

    --Rich Stahnke