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Backyard Theater Marketplace
Projectors at Wal-Mart
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Backyard Theater - Outdoor Movies

Backyard Theater - Outdoor Movies  




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Author Topic: We started as a business  (Read 8814 times)
pistolero56
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« on: July 02, 2013, 11:29:02 am »

The wife and I started our own little side business. 'Sunset Flix' was started in january of this year.
Last year the wife and i talked about it, and finally i convinced her that this may be a good fun opportunity for us.Lucky for me i have a very supporting wife that loves movies. After doing all the research we decided to give it a shot.
We both still have our day jobs and plan on keeping them. This is a side business and we want to have fun with it.
Its been 6 months so far and we have done a few gigs for family and friends. We have also done a couple of dj gigs for family only, i plan to keep it that way as my dj skills are still very limited. I did manange to land a gig on the 12th with a property management company movie night, so we are excited about that as this would be the first one for complete strangers. Hopefully it turns out well.

As far as equipment goes, we are starting out with minimum equipment and of course we will be upgrading and growing as we go. We plan on getting inflatables, and bigger projectors and better sound, all in due time.
we are registered as a DBA and also will switch to LLC if things go well for us.

So far we have found that breaking into this type of business is hard work, but we will not give up and break through all the barriers in front of us. We advertise on social media,word of mouth, business cards,fliers. Our producer and director friends have also helped us spread the word and there is talks about a small film festival soon.

lastly i want to thank byt and all of its members for all the great info. I continue to learn from you guys everyday.

check out our website and let me know what you think

 http://sunsetflix.com/ 
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The Rusty Trax Theater
Sunset Flix
movieman
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« Reply #1 on: July 02, 2013, 11:45:50 am »

Many questions:
Do you have Insurane
What type of audio
Projector lumins
DVD payers (sd or blu-ray)

 I would say you need to raise your screens. I n the pictures they look about 2' off the ground.
Your weather policy needs to more in depth
Your prices depending on equipment seen out of line.

Good luck with your venture
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rg
see you at the movies
pistolero56
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« Reply #2 on: July 02, 2013, 01:05:32 pm »

Many questions:
Do you have Insurane
What type of audio
Projector lumins
DVD payers (sd or blu-ray)

 I would say you need to raise your screens. I n the pictures they look about 2' off the ground.
Your weather policy needs to more in depth
Your prices depending on equipment seen out of line.

Good luck with your venture

hello movieman, as of now we do not have insurance. It is not required here in california but thats not the reason for not having it. We do plan on getting insurance but first we want to get a few more customers. For now I am very careful with securing everything and keep anyone away from the equipment. I am starting out with an epson 705hd pj and picking up a better pj soon. I completely agree with you about our screen it does need to be higher off the ground. It is 2.5 feet off the ground. We do both blu ray and sd , we know our pj only does up to 720p but like mentioned, we will upgrade soon. Our pricing is low, we do know this and we feel that this is fair for the equipment we provide. Once we have better equipment we can up our prices a bit. For now we are focusing on small backyard gigs and thats it. We understand that better equipment is required for bigger public jobs.
For sound we have active mackie th15a speakers and a mixer providing 2.0 sound.
I will look at our weather section and see how we can improve on the wording.
thanks for the tips.
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The Rusty Trax Theater
Sunset Flix
cecilb
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« Reply #3 on: July 03, 2013, 08:47:41 am »

I think it looks pretty good. One suggestion as a marketing tool, I'd show an event with kids, folks enjoying a movie, makes it more personable. Hey, you're just starting out, i think your set up is fine and looks professional. Remember, most folks have never seen heard of an outdoor movie so I'm sure your equipment is just fine.

Can I ask what you paid for website or did you do yourself? I'm looking to create two sites for seperate ventures.
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seating for 1,000........... 12 at a time
l33tDad
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« Reply #4 on: July 03, 2013, 10:10:41 am »

I've always thought about using lighting trusses for hanging a screen! How's that working out for you?? My problem is that I have a 9'x16' screen which I think would be way too large for a "normal" truss system like that...
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pistolero56
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« Reply #5 on: July 03, 2013, 10:39:36 am »

I think it looks pretty good. One suggestion as a marketing tool, I'd show an event with kids, folks enjoying a movie, makes it more personable. Hey, you're just starting out, i think your set up is fine and looks professional. Remember, most folks have never seen heard of an outdoor movie so I'm sure your equipment is just fine.

Can I ask what you paid for website or did you do yourself? I'm looking to create two sites for seperate ventures.
Thanks cecilb, i dont disagree with you at all about the pictures, i have plenty of nice pics with my pvc setup but non with the truss frame. I even did a free giveaway to acquire more pictures but the event never went through. i will have better pictures up as i go.
The website was designed by my wife's friend/co worker and he gave me a hell of a price because  of that. check out his website at www.illicitgraphics.com
I can let him know your interested in a couple sites ,im sure he will give you a good deal.

I've always thought about using lighting trusses for hanging a screen! How's that working out for you?? My problem is that I have a 9'x16' screen which I think would be way too large for a "normal" truss system like that...
the lighting truss idea, i got from a member here (Pyronious), he was nice enough to share some info and answer a bunch of questions i had. Since i saw his setup i knew thats what i wanted. Its working out good,it does take a little longer to setup than an inflatable but i got it down to about 20 mins with the help of my 9 year old. The truss is 15 ft wide, your screen would be a little to big unless you found a way to extend the sides a little, maybe weld some extension in if you have the skills to weld, then you would have to repaint. i already had a screen smaller than 9x16 so it worked out perfect for me. Also try and find a truss that goes up the highest, mine goes up 11ft, most go up 9ft. or 10ft.
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The Rusty Trax Theater
Sunset Flix
movieman
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« Reply #6 on: July 03, 2013, 03:08:40 pm »

We have a backyard sissor screen (16x9 ) for inside use.  Also have a 20x11 truss screen. Easy to assemble but takes 3 to 4 people to raise. rg
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rg
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Outta Control
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« Reply #7 on: July 12, 2013, 01:47:33 pm »

I agree with movieman your pricing is way off. Currently you are pricing yourself too low for the market. Secondly get insurance we operate in sue-happy People's Republic of Kalifornia and you don't want to be caught off guard.
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Company name: Backyard Flicks Outdoor Cinema
Site: http://backyardflicks.com
11visions
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« Reply #8 on: July 13, 2013, 12:40:58 am »

I couldn't find pricing on their website. What's considered "normal" for our industry? I'm at $299 for a 12' system, $449 for a 16', and $949 for a 24'.
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Phillip Hullquist
I toured the U.S. showing outdoor movies in 2010 on Carl's 16x9 screen.
Now I own eight commercial rental screens ranging from 9x5 to 30x17!
SVinzant
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« Reply #9 on: July 13, 2013, 09:31:35 am »

11Visions,

The pricing structure you have set up may be correct for "your neck of the woods".
Some of the more expensive places to live around the country can probably command more dollars for a show.

If you are getting some shows booked, that is great! If you are getting flooded with calls, you can probably bump your prices up a bit.
You will find an equribilum balance point and know when things are "clicking"!
Good luck with your new venture!

Scott
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pistolero56
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« Reply #10 on: July 15, 2013, 12:19:45 am »

Hey whats up guys, I want to thank all of you for the comments and advise, I do take all of your advise into consideration, specially since you fellas are already in the biz.

I agree with movieman your pricing is way off. Currently you are pricing yourself too low for the market. Secondly get insurance we operate in sue-happy People's Republic of Kalifornia and you don't want to be caught off guard.
Hello outta control, I also agree with you guys that my pricing is low for my services. This is definitely a start up price. I feel that after i get a little more comfortable and pick up better equipment i can charge more. There are a few companies doing this for alot cheaper than me, i simply wanted to stay in the middle of the highest and lowest i found.
Regarding insurance, i do need it.... and will have it soon. i know what you mean by sue-happy people. i have to look a little more into it and just get it done. i wanted to do a few shows to pay for it but thinking about it now i know im taking a big risk.

11Visions,

The pricing structure you have set up may be correct for "your neck of the woods".
Some of the more expensive places to live around the country can probably command more dollars for a show.

If you are getting some shows booked, that is great! If you are getting flooded with calls, you can probably bump your prices up a bit.
You will find an equribilum balance point and know when things are "clicking"!
Good luck with your new venture!

Scott

thanks for your kind words sir.

I couldn't find pricing on their website. What's considered "normal" for our industry? I'm at $299 for a 12' system, $449 for a 16', and $949 for a 24'.

hey 11visions, i dont have pricing on our website, but i do have a "starting at just 175" , this will be raised in the future like mentioned above. what people get for 175 is our indoor 120 inch screen and just a movie, no preshow. i charge more for the bigger screen.
your pricing is where i want to be at in the future, i dont see how that would be a problem living in orange county california.

 
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The Rusty Trax Theater
Sunset Flix
pistolero56
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« Reply #11 on: July 15, 2013, 12:35:43 am »

friday night we had our first show. this was a property mgmt company having dinner and a movie for their employees, approx. 50 people were expected.
customer asked for me to setup at 12pm, party started at 6pm. so we go to setup and everthing went good on that part. we came back at around 7 pm, walked in and there were about 20 people there, this was kind of a relief because by this time i was a little nervous. as i walk in i hear some folks say " these are the movie guys" and i felt all eyes starring at me, the place was pretty quit as i walked up to my chair. Then after i started playing some upbeat music i could feel the crowd kinda loosen up a little(pheeeww). The preshow was scheduled at 8 followed by the movie. i did have a little problem cuing the movie while the preshow played, and my transition from preshow to movie wasnt as smooth as i hoped for but not so bad.
the movie played and everyone was happy, kids watching from inside the pool and grownups all around. my 8 year old son handed out popcorn and enjoyed giving me a hand.

after the movie, we played a few more songs while we broke down the screen. the comments i got from the customer were awesome, she was happy . needless to say she said she would put us on their company newsletter and recommend us. they also took pictures which we will get a copy of.

this was a good first show and learning experience. I learned that it takes longer to setup at someone elses house, therefore i definetly am considering raising prices soon.
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The Rusty Trax Theater
Sunset Flix
movieman
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« Reply #12 on: July 15, 2013, 09:58:41 am »

What was the problem with cueing up?  Put the DVD/Blu-ray in the player and bang. (was it a bad disk).  I request all my clients have a New disk.  If it comes from Swank or someone else PLAY the disk when you recv. it so you have time to contact them.
I assume you have 2 decks in your system. One of the best units is the OPPO. Its a great deck and plays anything.
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rg
see you at the movies
pistolero56
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« Reply #13 on: July 15, 2013, 10:14:50 am »

What was the problem with cueing up?  Put the DVD/Blu-ray in the player and bang. (was it a bad disk).  I request all my clients have a New disk.  If it comes from Swank or someone else PLAY the disk when you recv. it so you have time to contact them.
I assume you have 2 decks in your system. One of the best units is the OPPO. Its a great deck and plays anything.

I have 2 decks that is correct. I had cued the movie before i started the preshow. since the preshow took a while to start when it was done and time to switch to the movie, my 2nd deck had gone into "sleep mode" and i didnt notice. it took a few extra seconds for it to load back up. nobody complained, but i wasnt too happy with it.
that was it, nothing major.
once i make a little money, im definetely looking into the oppos, i will be contacting you fro recommendations if thats ok.
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The Rusty Trax Theater
Sunset Flix
movieman
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« Reply #14 on: July 15, 2013, 10:29:36 am »

Also when you have the money get a Kramer Seamless switcher. It does Componet, HDMI . When you switch from one deck to another it fades to black (in/out) keeps your signal sync. NO beak up. Its a great unit. Around $1000.00
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rg
see you at the movies
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