When we were filming The Good Book and Providence, the term Mise-en-scene came up a lot. It’s a film term that means “everything the camera sees” and since we were telling stories visually, it was critical that everything on screen was there for a reason. Every detail from location choice to costumes and props was specifically chosen because it added to the story, and anything that didn’t add to the story had to be removed.
Our efforts worked because we heard over and over how audiences got so caught up in the movie, they forgot there wasn’t dialogue. Their minds were taking in all the visual clues and filling in the missing dialogue. As filmmakers, we literally showed instead of told.
When it comes to marketing, we need to always keep in mind the concepts of Mise-en-scene and showing rather than telling. Every day you’re showing people who you are. Each Facebook post, whether on your personal page or business page, gives your followers a piece of information about your identity. You’re someone who loves to cook or eat or travel. Or someone who likes to complain or criticize. They see you partying or going to church. They take each post, comment, and picture and file it in their mind. And that’s how they form an opinion of you.
They see if your professional posts are thrown together or carefully planned. If they’re positive or negative. Exciting or boring.
If you’re a Negative Nellie who gets on Facebook and complains because no one supports your efforts, they’ll make the judgment call that your work must not be very good. They’ll file that information away and when you come to them wanting them to share your movies or buy your book or cast you as an actor, they’re going to remember and not be interested in your project.
Go look at your posts on social media. Analyze them. What does each one say about you? Is it helping you or hurting you? Are there posts or pictures that need to be removed?
Make a commitment from this day forward to think before you post and to make sure you present your best face forward. Remember Mise-en-scene. Everything we see contributes to the story.
To learn more about branding, check out my blog post How to Brand Yourself When You’re Just Getting Started.