Philmy (http://philmy.in) is a social movie discovery platform focused on the Indian market. By taking into account about the uniqueness associated with Indian movies and audiences, Philmy help users find movies in a novel way and also help filmmakers/production houses understand their audience better. Philmy uses fun and quirky hash-tags that breakdown key elements of Indian movies (e.g. typical story lines, music, songs) to aid discovery in an engaging way by uncovering hidden relationships among movies. The platform also helps users make informed movie-watching choices by providing aggregated critic reviews, ratings, trailers and custom-written synopsis with the right amount of detail without revealing any spoilers.
One best informative platform
Our vision is to use all these elements to help users in their entire movie journey process – from awareness (hash tags, movie lists, music) to consideration (custom synopsis, ratings, critic reviews) to actual viewing (re-direct them to online/offline sources) to feedback (user reviews) to advocacy (social movie recommendations). By working on both ends of the value chain, they are aiming to make Philmy, a data-driven organization that helps not only consumers but also exhibitors, distributors and production houses make more informed decisions about movies.
Accepted the challenge like a Boss and Overcame
There were many challenges associated with setting up and scaling. They had to keep their idea grounded in reality. It took a long time to agree and refine the idea and create a minimum viable product and kept wanting to make it better and more comprehensive before launch. Overcoming these challenges took a lot of good internal communication and alignment. But with the help of strong team having diverse skillsets gelled together well and helped out in winning the challenge.
Sometimes, frustation leads to wonderful Ideas
Philmy was born out of frustration regarding the absence of an online portal with appropriate information on Indian movies in a well-organised manner. Spending hours together looking at multiple websites, compiling scattered pieces of information in our heads to determine which movie to watch is an utter time waste. Each source had issues like long reviews, lack of cultural context, biased critics or cluttered information. Discussions were held and finally the team decided to build something that users would like to use and would recommend to others. The feedback received by interviewing a group of film lovers were overwhelmingly positive, confirming their belief that they could add a lot of value to the movie evaluation process that led to build Philmy.
The Biography of the Three Gentlemen
The three gentlemen Anmol, Amrinder and Harsh were all pursuing masters at Warwick and Cambridge during the launch of idea.
- Amrinder, a graduate from the University of Cambridge is a strategy consultant, has worked with large volumes of primary and secondary data in the technology and healthcare space. His data analytics capabilities help us understand user behaviour, attitudes and preferences. He is currently pursuing his MBA at Columbia University.
- Anmol, an MIS graduate from University of Warwick is an IT consultant, is an expert at capturing user requirements and building custom information systems which helps in building a strong back-end database to capture necessary data for Philmy to become data-centric organisation.
- Harsh, a Masters degree holder in Bioscience Enterprise from the University of Cambridge is a healthcare consultant, has worked with top pharmaceutical clients on problems relating to patient treatment pathways.
Can’t wait more for the release
Since the product is in beta stage, the team is currently focusing on refining the product before the release and promote it to the general public. Aiming to complete the last set of planned changes and the full-featured website will be ready by the end of October.
No less in the competitive world
Most of the competitors are stuck with the gossip style content. They have failed to recognise that the Indian audience has become quite informed and now demands information that is relevant to the movie evaluation process in an easy to comprehend way. Also, the content is entirely driven by journalists with limited-to-no opportunities for users to engage and add value to that platform. While there are substitutes available, there is no single platform that serves as a one-stop-shop for Indian movies. The default go-to website that people use provides critic opinions. Post acquiring sizable consumer base and collect user engagement data, they will employ a consulting based approach where they work with movie studios, film-makers, distributors, exhibitors & other key stakeholders on a partnership/consulting model. Thereby planning to monetise the user data by providing it to key stakeholders of the movie-journey cycle. By performing advanced analytics on the underlying data, the team helps out in providing key insights to help the stakeholders maximise their earning potential.
The working model, goals and ideas
As a technology start up, Philmy has been lucky in not requiring extensive capital to build MVP which has been bootstrapped with contributions from the founders so far.
Philmy works on the following principles:
- By aggregating reviews from top film critics who have a cultural connect with the target audience and providing custom-content.
- By adding values for users in their movie evaluation process.
- Unlike other platforms where users have to seek out information explicitly, Philmy not only helps discover new movies but also classifies them in easily understood topics with references to already watched / popular movies.
From earth to moon
The team plans to market Philmy and bring out new exciting features like social recommendations by allowing users to send direct recommendations to their friends, thereby helping movies to gain traction by digital word-of-mouth.