FestiVote is the brainchild of an award-winning short-film producer and an actress. They thought it was time to ditch the pencil and paper ballots and build an app that encourages film festival engagement with prizes, personalized scheduling, and more.
The app not only improves upon traditional festival voting, but also provides filmmakers and organizers with data and analysis on audience likes and dislikes. These insights can deepen the value of viewer feedback for creators and help improve festival programming.
With the app launched, founders Philippe and Anne-Mari Macridis are now focusing on festival adoption and considering what other types of events their technology could help.
Once the Macridis’ created their app they realized they had a time-consuming challenge -- they needed to extract data from 6,000 film festivals to build the app’s infrastructure and market it. They quickly determined they needed to find a partner.
“After scouring film festival websites for hours, Anne-Mari and I quickly realized this was definitely not the most efficient use of our time.’’ Philippe says.
Not only did they need to extract and organize the data, but they also wanted to do it quickly to take advantage of the fact that so many festivals had moved online because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Online formats have piqued festival organizers’ interest in how to engage audiences -- something the FestiVote app does with gamification and interactive components.
“Obtaining the data to help power a seamless system to connect viewers and film festivals in a meaningful way was our top priority," Anne-Mari says. "We needed the data relatively quickly, and in an organized fashion to properly help us strategize our outreach."
The founders were empowered by their conversations with festival directors on the film circuit, who indicated it was time for an upgrade to digital. Anne-Mari and Philippe sought to build FestiVote and help each festival stand out and enhance their festivals through time-saving tech solutions.
Anne-Mari started searching online to find a company that could meet their needs. She wanted a collaborative process and attention to detail. And she absolutely wanted a partner she would be able to bounce ideas off when it came to extracting additional data.
Anne-Mari heard about CloudFactory from an industry colleague and immediately felt it could be a good fit. “CloudFactory understood that we’re a startup and we have a budget. It was very important that we could work with a company that understands the entrepreneurial spirit.’’
The CloudFactory team scraped information from 6,000 target festival websites and supplemented it with additional online sources to build a robust database of festival contacts and profiles for the Macridis’ to target with their marketing campaigns.
Though they came into the partnership with a process already created and data points in mind, CloudFactory helped the Macridises further optimize for efficiency. “The team had some tricks up their sleeves, little tools and plugins and whatnot that they could use to extract this information. This process was an education and fun, led by beautiful energy from a female-led team’’ Anne-Mari says.
Anne-Mari was thrilled with the collaborative nature of working with CloudFactory and happy with the U.S.-based manager and Kenya-based staff.
“Once that ball was rolling, it was effortless. I could just log on and see what was happening, and the CloudFactory workers really understood it,’’ Anne-Mari says.
“I had complete trust in CloudFactory to help build our company and that took a huge weight off my shoulders. Bringing them on board allowed me the time to really focus on cultivating relationships with festival directors and I'm so happy with the results.’’
With their final database of almost 7,000 festivals worldwide built in just over two months, FestiVote is ready for the spotlight. “We’ve always had a commitment to the film community, so bringing this app to life is a dream for us,” says Philippe. “And we were able to do it thanks to CloudFactory.”
“We’ve always had a commitment to the film community, so bringing this app to life is a dream for us. And we were able to do it thanks to CloudFactory.”