There are some simple product enhancements that rights owners can implement to improve the way their film is being discovered on Kanopy through our discovery and personalization engines:
1) Film Title
Does your film title explain what the film is about? eg "Open Sesame" is quite a generic name yet "Open Sesame: The Story of Seeds" gives a much better indication of what the film is about. This will help users find/discover your film and increase the likelihood of them playing the film.
Is the still you have chosen to advertise your film compelling? Colorful stills that offer some sort of clue as to what the film is about will help it stand out. Yes, users do judge a book by the cover!
Additionally, does the still work in a small thumbnail format which is how users will be browsing the platform? An example of a still that stands out and works for both a small and large screen is here.
The first sentence is the most important part of your synopsis. As users scroll over the thumbnails while browsing, the first sentence will appear over the thumbnail. The first sentence, and particularly the first few words, will have a big impact on whether the user will click through to your video page. Avoid repeating the name of the video title in this valuable real estate. For an example of a film with a powerful and effective first line see here.
Additionally, a good synopsis will be short, succinct and contain good key words that address the main themes in the film.
Tags are key themes for your film. Currently, most tags are hidden from view (to avoid cluttering the user-experience) but they work hard in the background connecting your film with other 'like' films. This is important for our audience who are likely to browse and watch a number of films around similar themes.
Tags should be fairly general so we can assign the tag to other 'like' films to hone in on a user's particular interest area. Too niche and the tag becomes redundant. eg "Monterey California Marine Biology Research Center" is too niche. "Marine Biology" would be more helpful and have far more matches.
Some examples of powerful tags are: Activism, African American History, Race, Immigration, International Cinema, Drama, Asian Art, Native American, California, and Women's Studies
You will be able to submit tags soon, but in the meantime, please send any tags to your Kanopy licensing contact for inclusion.
Please ensure your captions have been provided to Kanopy. Some schools do not accept films without captions. Our search technology scans the captions to find key words as well as the title/synopsis etc. If you require assistance with captions, please see our help section on captions.
6) Filmmaker Comments
If you post a comment, your film will automatically be promoted to our homepage. The comments that work best are conversational in style, as though you are talking to a small group of professors/students. The more personal the better. eg "I made this film because...." OR "My hope for this film is ...." OR "I often get asked "What happened next?'"
Films with filmmaker comments are more likely to have users post comments in response which plugs into the algorithm to help your film get served up to more users on Kanopy.
Please send your filmmaker comments to your Kanopy licensing contact for inclusion.