Gramarye Media employs cross-disciplinary, industry-leading expert mentors and a proprietary technology platform to systematically incubate unpublished manuscripts into blockbuster event cross-media franchises, including films, television pilots, games, toys, comics, and more.
We select stories that have the fundamental structure requirements to achieve franchise success and add value to the story at every stage of the incubation process to develop franchise potential. Finally, we build the single most critical element needed for franchise success: a built-in audience.
In the past, studios have been “hunters and gatherers,” seeking potential franchise IPs. Gramarye shifts the paradigm to an “agricultural” model, intentionally farming stories with blockbuster DNA.
With budgets soaring and competition for screens getting fiercer, risk mitigation is critical. Specifically:
- Better data is required — predictive, reliable, and unbiased analytics in entertainment media don’t exist today.
- Audience bases are unclear — sales figures for books and comics are undependable. These figures indicate store purchases, not consumer purchases.
- Adapting a story across media channels is a challenge — core elements of a story that inspire audience passion and loyalty are often lost in translation when adapted across media channels.
- Success begins early — a clear vision for a cross-media franchise is often missing in the early stages of story development. Our incubation process changes that.
Discovery and Incubation
The process begins with Discovery, using a proprietary process to find manuscripts with blockbuster DNA.
Next, we employ an “A-List” team of mentors to work with writers to:
- Edit, polish and develop the manuscript to maximize its potential, something the “big 5” publishers rarely do today.
- Build a platform to promote the book and build an audience.
- Develop a plan for cross-media development.
- Learn key collaboration and adaptation skills, allowing them to act as a “showrunner” across media channels to protect the integrity of a story without being precious about the details.
In short, authors learn to treat their intellectual properties like a business. It’s the Silicon Valley business accelerator model applied to storytelling.
Next, we use a proprietary technology platform to publish each manuscript as “eBook 2.0” apps for tablets and smartphones. These book apps, sold through the Apple, Amazon, and Google Play app stores, are layered with interactivity to create a magical, immersive reading experience.
We have found that fans of specific stories like to congregate with others who share their passions.
Gramarye Media employs a proprietary social media platform that provides incentives (such as unlockable content, in-game help, and badges) for users to share favorite passages on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and by email and text message. The social media shares appear in a user’s content feed, not in the ad space, and is customized for each user.
The platform allows us to identify and reward key influencers, and to track the viral spread of brand awareness. Each Facebook user has an average of 245 friends, of which 7.5% see any given post. It’s reasonable to assume friends share common interests. Past experience with this proprietary technology has shown that we can expect 1.5 additional sales per user.
In addition, we have added in-book discussion forums, helping us build thriving fan communities. The communities help us prove a story’s potential for development as potential tentpole media franchises.
The Percy Jackson novels have an audience comparable both in size and passion to the audience for the Harry Potter books. Nonetheless, the film adaptations failed. We heard readers talk about literally crying when they say the films. Something went wrong. We solve the problem by turning to the ones who know best: the fans.
With our games, users can pick a few of their favorite characters to complete a side story, and then chose how they interact with each other. Are they friendly? Angry? Funny? Flirtatious? Then we can track that by age, sex, and geographic location. If you’ve read about how online games can be used to mine data, you’ll have an idea of the wealth of truly significant marketing data that can be gathered.
The difference is, we use our data mining to test a story’s viability as a potential tentpole cross-media franchise (and to spread brand awareness), not as a means to sell in-game items. This information helps demonstrate a reader’s level of engagement with a story and helps demonstrate the traction a film, television series, game, or line of toys (for example) might have with audiences.
Fans (and authors) complain that studios don’t listen to them. We’re changing that.
Picking the Winners
We expect one or two out of each annual slate of around twelve titles to emerge as hits with the audience traction to develop as cross-media event franchises.
The ones with audience traction — measured by sales, shares, forum participation, and more — are the ones we can partner to develop as cross-media franchises, including films, television, games, toys, apparel, merchandise, and more.
The authors are educated and empowered to act as “showrunners,” protecting the brand integrity of their stories across media channels.
We will have proven, built-in audience — who have told us by their comments, choices, and shares exactly what to adapt and how to do it.