Here are a couple pro-tips put together with our favorite comedy folk in mind.

A lot of stand-up comedians are powering Internet distribution of their comedy specials with VHX. Think ‘digital merch table’: It works because you can use your own voice, control your own video releases (timeline, geography, and pricing), and see the actual data including contact information for everyone you sell to. Coincidentally, it’s way easier than carrying around boxes of DVDs.

And no you don’t have to be Louis CK. A million zillion fans helps, sure, but eliminating the barriers between you and your audience (or, between your comedy special and your fans’ wallets), is positive at any scale. Trust us: If you have a mailing list in any form, you’ve got a good start.

Think outside the box with pre-orders, discounts, & bundles

Getting creative with how you sell your content really makes a difference. We keep seeing successes when artists engage their audience early by offering pre-orders. Greg Proops filmed a live special at the world famous Musso & Frank restaurant in Hollywood, and made a unique coupon code for his podcast listeners to pre-order Greg Proops Live at a discount. And if you have more than just one video, make a deluxe version and sell it all together the way Brian Posehn bundled together the album and video versions of his classy stand-up special The Fartist. In our experience, we see customers will pay more to buy more. Maybe include some behind-the-scenes footage, or jokes that didn’t make it in the show.

Keep fans posted

The most successful comedians are the ones who really work at promoting. Take all the email addresses you’ve collected and send Updates with our newsletter feature or another newsletter program, and don’t slack in implementing all those handy social media platforms to make sure the word is getting out there. Jim Norton made sure to talk directly to his fans on Facebook and Twitter, and gabbed on various radio shows to promote American Degenerate.

Make your $%*& available everywhere

VHX works globally, so fans can watch anywhere (and on any device), as long as they’ve got an internet connection. And it helps to make your work available everywhere. 100% of our top ten best-selling titles across the platform are available worldwide. You don’t have to wait until your special gets picked up on Comedy Central to get it to your fans. Aziz Ansari released Buried Alive on Netflix, and is also selling it alongside his previous self-release Dangerously Delicious on azizansari.com. Bob Saget's That’s What I’m Talkin’ About premiered on Showtime, and you can now get it directly from his website. Give your audience as many opportunities as possible to see your jokes and support you, and the data says: They will.

A Brief Look at Texting and the Internet in Film 

Filmmakers have pretty much figured out on-screen texting. There’s still some work to do on depicting the Internet. everyframeapainting is on the case.

PS Fave classic example of world wide web visualizations will forever be Hackers

VHX Website Themes in Action

Want to sell video from your own website but you don’t have a website yet? We’ve got you covered (for free). Our website theme editor has a pile of super-customizable themes, all designed specifically for selling premium video. Look! Here’s one. It’s a free theme called CELLAR DOOR. And here’s how a couple publishers have made it their own:

A Brony Tale's website keeps it simple. Read about the doc, watch the trailer, and redeem a code or buy instantly. Done! Get all your behind-the-scenes brony action in just a click or two. 

Chrysalis takes advantage of this theme’s big top image to feature their poster - that’s the kind of post-apocalyptic vision that makes you want to watch more. The site also highlights their purchasing options, calling out their Deluxe HD Edition two visible logo designs. 

VHX Magic Eye, at your service. 

Can you spot the sharks?

COHERENCE is the sci-fi thriller of the summer that everyone is using positive adjectives to describe. Really positive adjectives. Filmmaker James Ward Byrkit made it in five days on a teeny budget, with no script and big ideas. We probably shouldn’t say much more, other than… watch it.   

VHX + Crowdfunding = Free Backer Reward Fulfillment

Thinking about crowdfunding a film or video project? Check this out: Kickstarter and Indiegogo creators have sent more than 110,000 digital rewards to their backers through VHX

We help crowdfunders send out exclusive digital codes so their campaign’s backers can watch what they’ve made, and we run special, backers-only streaming events (think ‘private digital film screening’ or ‘online premiere’), like we did with the Roger Ebert documentary Life Itself, or Zach Braff’s Wish I Was Here. 

Beyond reward fulfillment, crowdfunders use VHX to create a new home base for your project after your campaign is over, you can send secure digital screeners to press, and keep your supporters posted with Updates. After that, when you start selling directly to your audience, obviously we can help with that too.

Did we mention this digital crowdfunding reward redemptions thing is free? Yeah, we do it for free. If you want to know more, get in touch, tell us about your project, how many backers you want to show your movie or video to, and your timeline. In the meantime, here are a bunch of great crowdfunded projects using VHX. 

VHX Website Themes in Action

Want to sell video from your own website but you don’t have a website yet? We’ve got you covered (for free). Our website theme editor has a pile of super-customizable themes, all designed specifically for selling premium video. Look! Here’s one that’s great for selling series. It’s a theme called THE WHOLE EARTH. And here’s how a couple publishers have made it their own:

The Gamers uses a rotating carousel to feature their newest videos up top with a big image. They’ve also included their entire catalog of videos below, so you can browse and buy extra episodes and festival cuts. All your fantasy Gamer vids in one place!

Here’s a great example of offering options for many series — Kabillion highlights several different animated kids shows, and packages of episodes for each. So you can easily navigate to buy a bundle of 4, 6, or 13 episodes all with one click. Love that easy search bar!

'HOLY GHOST' Launches One-Day Digital Premiere

What is God’s role in filmmaking? Can He direct a movie? Feature documentary HOLY GHOST sets out to address this question on a series of faith-based adventures, taking the audience from India to Monte Carlo to a Korn concert. Yes, that Korn.

HOLY GHOST is launching their film via VHX, and this weekend, they’re experimenting with a cool early availability strategy: One full month before their official release, they’re offering a one-day digital premiere. For 24 hours, fans who pre-order can watch before anyone else. Hats off to an Internet distribution strategy that leverages the power of engaging fans early.

Thanks to everyone who came to our VHX House Party!

We had a blast and there are so many GIFs to prove it. If you’d like to relive it all as a fly on the wall, here’s a timelapse vid

(BIG h/t to phhhoto!)

The perfect skyline.