Hollywood Comes to Chattanooga

 Monty Wyne

The third annual Chattanooga Film Festival (CFF) is ready to roll March 31st through April 3rd. It will be held at the Carmike Majestic 12 in downtown Chattanooga. This year’s cinematic entries, like Bad BloodEmbrace of the Serpent, and the Hank Williams biopic, I Saw the Light, promise to entertain and make an indelible impression on those who attend the four-day event.

When Maycreate won the business in the fall of 2014, the Festival had just debuted that spring. The event had begun the process of building a loyal and enthusiastic fan base and as the spring of 2015 approached, CFF not only needed to live up to the expectations of its ardent fan base, but also had to connect with a new audience.

Maycreate was looking for a campaign that could strike a balance between the upstart no-budget genre films, as well as the respected and well-known pieces of cinematic history. We also had to look for an effective and memorable way to ensure that more people could enjoy the workshops, the films, and the many exciting events that were scheduled.

The brand identity began by taking the original CFF logo, designed by Tai-Yii Yeh who had helped create memorable movie campaigns for Paramount, Warner Bros and HBO, and establish a complimentary color scheme and web-friendly typeface that unified the CFF brand across digital, print and promotional channels. Then, to give the Festival a unique voice, look and association with the captivating history of cinema and its audience, we scoured the royalty-free media archives for examples of early cinema that was cool, imaginative and fun.

After that, we took a page from the successful marketing campaigns created by Hollywood. We built semi-transparent lightbox posters for display at Chattanooga-area movie theatres. The design reflected the look and feel of the new CFF Website and the headlines for the posters were twists on classic movie lines from the ‘70s and ‘80s. Miniature versions of the posters were sold as collector’s items during the festival.

Digital marketing was extensive and very successful. A custom online ad campaign was created to encourage ticket and badge pre-sales. The core campaign targeted film lovers in Chattanooga and the closest cities connected to it via nearby Interstates. A retargeting effort displayed ads to anyone who browsed the CFF Site.

Results? The 2015 Chattanooga Film Festival nearly doubled its audience, drawing praise form industry icons like Elijah Wood, Pat Healy, Joe Bob Briggs and more. Southern Living magazine wrote that one day the Chattanooga Film Festival would surpass the popular Sundance Festival held annually in Utah.

Check Out Our 2015 CFF Work