What do you stand for?
Recently, I dove into a wonderful book called “Start With Why” by Simon Sinek and it has challenged my thinking about ShoHawk. Christopher and I have always wanted to make movies. Ever since we met that’s been our goal, nothing else.
What we’ve never fully discussed is, why?
I know that’s a silly question. I know if you’re reading this, you probably think we shouldn’t even have to dive into this topic, but it’s incredibly important, and very seldom talked about.
Why do we want to make films? What kind of films do we want to make? What stories do we want to tell?
In the book Sinek talks about the Golden Circle of how we operate as humans. In this TED talk he dives into the Golden Circle:
Sinek states, “Everyone know what they do, most know how they do it…but very few know why they know what they do.”
Why do you do what you do? Why are you telling the stories you’ve decided to tell? We are in the business of selling stories, but why did you choose to tell that story?
Inspired leaders all start from the inside out. “If Apple did not start from the inside out, a marketing message from them might sound something like this, ‘We make computers that are beautifully designed, simple to use , and user friendly. Want to buy one?’” Not the most appealing message in the world, but that’s how most people communicate.
It’s uninspiring . Here’s how apple actually communicates, “Everything we do, we believe in challenging the status quo. The way we challenge the status quo is by making our products beautifully designed, simple to use, and user friendly. We just happen to make great computers. Want to buy one?”
People don’t buy what you do, they buy how you do it. You can give someone the facts and figures, but you need to give someone a feeling about why you do what you do.
If you don’t know why you do what you do, how can you get your audience to buy into what you do? How can you get them to buy and be loyal to you and your brand of filmmaking?
You want people people to buy into what you stand for, and what your films stand for.
Driven by a cause, a purpose, and a belief – the Wright Brothers believed if they could figure out the flying machine, they could change the workld. Their competition wanted to be rich and famous. The people who believed in the Wright
If you talk about what you believe, you will attract people who believe what you believe.
People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it. What you do is the proof of what you believe.
What do you believe?
“Very few people or companies can clearly articulate WHY they do WHAT they do. By WHY I mean your purpose, cause or belief – WHY does your company exist? WHY do you get out of bed every morning? And WHY should anyone care?”
All organizations start with WHY, but only the great ones keep their WHY clear year after year.”
You, as a filmmaker, are the leader. You are there to get others to buy into your vision. As Senek states, ““The role of a leader is not to come up with all the great ideas. The role of a leader is to create an environment in which great ideas can happen.”’
“The role of a leader is not to come up with all the great ideas. The role of a leader is to create an environment in which great ideas can happen.” As filmmakers we need to reexamine the way we communicate our passion to the world.
I asked Christopher recently about the films we want to make at ShoHawk, and here’s where we settled:
It’s time to start thinking about your filmmaking style as your brand. What is your filmmaking brand? Here are some important questions you need to start asking yourself to pinpoint the type of films you want to start creating.
Your Filmmaking Brand
- What itch does your filmmaking brand scratch?
- Describe the essence of your film brand in three words.
- How will the lives of people in your target audience be different after engaging with your films?
- How will someone in your target audience know when it’s time to look for movies like yours?
- How will someone in your target audience feel after his or her first experience viewing your films?
Voice / Impression
- What do you believe about the film business businesses?
- How do you feel after you watch your favorite films?
- What impresses you the most about filmmakers?
- If you were a filmmaker, what would keep you up at night?
- If you were a filmmaker, why would you be creating your films?
Personal Experience / Identification
- Describe your first movie experience.
- What is your all-time favorite film, and why?
- Describe what you’ve observed about the film business.
- Describe what you’ve observed about film fans.
- What does it mean to you to be a fan of films?
- What have you heard life is like as a filmmaker?
- Where do you self-identify with filmmakers?
- What excites you about the opportunities of filmmaking?
These questions will help you determine where you’ll want to go with your films and narrow down the audience you want to eventually build with your films.
Have you started thinking about your brand of filmmaking?