Category: Personal View

HOW TO PITCH A TV SHOW – Part 5 – Following Up

So you went to the meeting and now you’re wondering when and how to follow up? Make sure you’re patient and don’t bother people more than you should!

After the meeting, it’s a good idea to send everyone present (or at least the main meeting person) an email thanking them for the opportunity to meet. DO NOT MAKE THIS A LONG EMAIL. It should be short (a few lines at most), and it should just simply thank them without questions. Don’t take it personal if they don’t reply to this email. You only send it as a courtesy.

If you are going to follow up with them, wait at least a few days before doing so. If you are meeting with an establish TV network, they have a lot on their plates, so make sure you give them ample time to put your idea in context.

If they told you in the meeting that they would think about it, then let them think about it. Don’t bother the TV network people with bothersome emails bugging them for updates. Just let it be. It’s probable that you might not get a response at all. This very well means that they’re not interested. Or sometimes they’ll send you an email letting your know that they’re not interested. If you get this email or no response, DO NOT send them an angry reply. You will only burn your bridges with the network and it will be a LONG TIME before you get another meeting, if you get another one at all.

If you have an agent or manager, let them handle the follow ups. That’s why they’ll get a commission of what you get paid if you sell the idea. Let them do their job.

However, if the TV network is interested in your idea, then they will let you know. You might have to attend a few more meeting before anything is complete. The entire process, including contracts, etc. could take months! So don’t quit your other revenue streams just yet. It’s an ongoing, fragile process. Let it take its course and congratulations if you sell your idea!

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The Top Rated Prime-Time TV Shows are Animated

seth_macfarlane_money

Seth MacFarlane – Creator of Family Guy and American Dad taking his ratings all the way to the bank.

4 out of the top 10-rated shows were animation <– That’s what I wrote last Monday.  This week is no different, except the top-rated show on a Sunday prime-time slot is Family Guy – which in case you don’t know, its an animated comedy for adults.

Is this all a big Coincidence? Or do people actually like funny animated shows? Well, numbers don’t lie. Hopefully other networks, especially Spanish-language, get hip to this trend that has been trending for years.  Just ask The Simpsons – they’ve been on the air for 25 years and still killing on the ratings!

Maybe they think it’s just a phase, just like hip hop and rap music…

(See ratings below…)

04.29.13
Preliminary National Ratings
Show (Network) Rating(18-49) / Share Viewers(Millions)

  1.  Family Guy (Fox) 2.5/7 4.9
  2.  The Amazing Race (CBS) 2.3/6 9.1
  3.  Once Upon a Time (ABC) 2.0/5 7.0
  4.  The Simpsons (Fox) 2.0/6 4.5
  5.  American Dad (Fox) 1.9/5 4.0
  6.  Bob’s Burgers (Fox) 1.7/5 3.5
  7.  Revenge (ABC) 1.7/4 5.9
  8.  60 Minutes (CBS) 1.5/5 11.6
  9.  America’s Funniest Home Videos (ABC) 1.5/5 6.4
  10.  The Mentalist (CBS) 1.5/4 8.7

Data provided by Nielsen

4 of the Top 10 TV Shows are Animation

According to Nielsen, last night 40% of the Top 10 TV programs were animated shows… Any questions?

animation

04.22.13

Preliminary National Ratings
Show (Network) Rating(18-49) / Share Viewers(Millions)

  1.  The Amazing Race (CBS) 2.4/7 9.1
  2.  Once Upon a Time (ABC) 2.1/6 7.3
  3.  60 Minutes (CBS) 1.9/6 11.6
  4.  Family Guy (r) (Fox) 1.8/5 4.1
  5.  American Dad (Fox) 1.8/5 3.9
  6.  The Simpsons (r) (Fox) 1.6/5 3.7
  7.  Bob’s Burgers (Fox) 1.7/5 3.7
  8.  The Mentalist (CBS) 1.6/4 8.9
  9.  The Good Wife (CBS) 1.5/4 8.9
  10.  Hallmark Hall of Fame: Remember Sunday (ABC) 1.4/4 6.5

Data provided by Nielsen

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Dogs are better consumers than Latinos [VIDEO PROOF]

Dog with RemoteDirect TV will start offering DogTV – which is a cable network with programming targeting dogs. You read right. Dogs. Not dog-owners; but the dogs themselves. They’ll show images of frisbees being thrown, birds chirping and other cool programming canines will love.

Yet, NuvoTV – which is a cable network targeting young English-speaking Latinos, can’t get on the Direct TV roster of channels. Why, you ask? Because dogs are obviously bigger consumers than young Latinos!

Let’s ignore the figures from a Nielsen report stating that Latinos showed a buying power of $1 trillion in 2010, and projected to grow 50 percent to $1.5 trillion in 2015. Let’s ignore those little ‘technicalities’ we call ‘real numbers’, and, instead, lets be realistic and use our common sense: Who buys phones? Dogs. Who buys cars? Dogs. Who buys beer? Dogs. So it makes sense for Direct TV to do what its right for their business and cater to dogs.

Don’t quote me on this, but one of the Direct TV executives said that the move to cater to dogs comes from the growing popularity of “Brian” from Family Guy. “People like Brian. He’s a cool dog,” says an unnamed Direct TV exec during an non-existent interview, right before photocopying his butt to use the picture as letterhead for an internal office memo.

I’m sure Direct TV feels that Latinos already got Telemundo, so what’s the big deal?

Right now my plan is to pop some popcorn, sit back and enjoy dogs barking non-stop on TV for about 4 or 5 hours – because the real dogs barking non-stop around my neighborhood all day and night are quite boring.

You can join me and do the same. Here’s a clip to get you started…

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HOW TO PITCH A TV SHOW – Part 2 – Preparing Your Pitch

Preparing you TV show idea means that you will write, re-write your concept and have something to show the networks. You have to show them what your idea is, in one way or another.

The fact is that ideas are everywhere and everyone has them, so that doesn’t make an idea that important. Actually there are so many ideas in the world that they’re pretty much close to worthless. This holds true for TV show ideas. It’s not very difficult to come up with a good TV show idea, and pretty much anyone can come up with one with a little thought. So how do you make your idea BETTER than the other millions of ideas out there? How do you present this idea in a way that seems like it’s the GREATEST THING EVER?

It starts out with preparation. You just can’t think of an idea and then call up the TV networks and tell them about it. I mean, you could, but probably won’t get your very far – even if it truly is a great idea. Networks don’t buy ideas, they instead buy “the thinker behind the idea”. This is important to understand because if you don’t prepare your idea in a way that showcases YOU in the best light possible, then it makes your idea untrustworthy.

So how do you prepare your idea?

1) Put it in Writing – This means thoroughly writing down you concept down to every miniscule detail. You’ll notice as you are writing, that more elements to your idea start to surface. Write these down too. This is an extremely important step in preparing your idea. Your writing will demonstrate that you have thought about all possible angles of your idea.

2) Re-Write It – Don’t skip this step, since this might very well be what makes your idea something worthwhile. Read your idea, let some people you trust hear it or read it and ask for feedback. Read or watch similar ideas and dissect what makes them work. Do all the research you can about your concept. Now re-write your idea. If you did all your due diligence, now you should have a new insight or something different to add or take away from your idea. KEEP IT TO THE POINT – Don’t take your idea in all sorts of direction. Keep it focused and remember this rule: LESS IS MORE!

3) Show It – A lot of people think they can just take their idea to the networks and that they will immediately get millions of dollars to make the idea come to life. If you have this in mind, you might want to reconsider your pursuit of success in the TV industry in general. It most likely not work the way you plan. The fact is today selling a TV show is quite competitive. People are taking fully produced TV series to TV Networks. The advantage is that having something already done will minimize the network’s risks.

This leaves you to having something to show. That means a video, a trailer, some production picture, something! Invest in making your own idea happen. If you believe in your idea being so great, then it shouldn’t be difficult for you to do whatever it take to bring it to life. After all, if you wouldn’t put your own money in your idea, what makes you think that a TV network will want to?

When you invest time and money into your TV show idea it shows the network that you are serious and committed. It also allows them to visualize your idea within their programming. Because remember that when they buy a TV show, they have to turn around and sell it to advertisers. If they think that advertisers won’t like your idea, they probably won’t buy it. That’s why you have to “wow” them with your presentation. You have to go in there prepared with something to SHOW. It’s a TV “SHOW” and not a book proposal. You have to show them your idea is awesome and that advertisers would be all over it. The network executives become your audience, so they have to like what you present to them, before they can even start thinking about buying your pitch.

DO NOT use the “I don’t have money to produce anything” excuse. That’s the lamest excuse you can use, ever. If you think you have a million dollars waiting on the other side of a door, wouldn’t you do whatever it took to get that door opened? Of course! Same with your TV show idea. Use your credit cards, mortgage your house, borrow money, plain and simply go above and beyond to make your idea happen – of course, only if you think the idea is worth it. The television industry is a risk-taker’s dwelling. If you don’t have the guts to take risks, you should probably get a nine to five job somewhere and be content.

Of course you could put together a Powerpoint presentation and show them that. That might work – BUT if you really want to maximize your chances, take more than that into the meeting. A well put one-minute video trailer of your idea in motion is a lot more powerful than a 100-page Powerpoint presentation.

GUN CONTROL IS NOT THE SOLUTION

gun banViolent acts have been taking place since the beginning of time. Even before humans, animals were killing each other for territory, food, mates, etc. Therefore, controlling a single tool will not make human’s violent nature go away. Besides gun control, what we need is CRAZY PEOPLE control.

In this country, if they establish tougher regulations and require background checks to purchase a gun, will the street gun dealers (which is the place where true criminals and crazies get their weapons) start requiring background checks? Obviously NOT! So are tougher regulations truly the answer?

Besides, if the gun was never invented people would still be killing each other with chainsaws, knives, machetes, samurai swords, rocks and spears. Because the true issue is that people kill each other. Period.

I’m taken aback at how it takes tragedies in “suburbia” in order for the government to finally see guns as a problem now. But people in poor communities have been victims of gun violence for years and years! Interesting that now that the problem is, shall I say, “mainstream”, now we have a real problem in our hands.

Further, crazy people that want to shoot up movie theaters and schools don’t buy their guns at Walmart, because people with bad intentions don’t operate in plain sight. They do things behind the scenes and cover their tracks. So making guns “illegal” will only affect those people that have nothing to hide.

I understand that guns make it easier to kill people and that a lot of people die from reckless behavior and emotional moments of ire, but people should be held responsible for their actions.  For example, if a homeless person steals a shopping cart, do we blame the shopping cart’s availability for the reason the homeless person broke the law? Do we require background checks on the homeless to own shopping carts? That would be ridiculous. Same reasoning if we blame guns for people’s crimes. In the homeless case, if that person was not homeless to begin with, then he wouldn’t have the need to steal a shopping cart in the first place. Therefore, resolving the issue from its root cause sounds more like a solution than banning or regulating anything.

Also, a lot of people jump in the bandwagon on causes without really understanding the issue or consequences of such. Case in point, Mexico has some of the toughest gun control laws in the world. In turn, Mexico also has some of the highest gun violence in the world. So what’s to be gained from doing the same thing in this country?

I’m not a fan of guns, but I’m also not a fan of “anti” anything. Anytime you have to stop people from “using something” it hardly works out. I believe in understanding why there’s a need to “use something” and tackling that, because that’s the root of the problem. Same thing with drugs: Making drugs illegal don’t stop people from using them. Yet, if we get to the bottom of “why” people use them, then maybe we could have a better chance controlling the problem.

I think the solution to the “gun problem” is to make psychopathic behavior illegal.