The most gratifying part of this weekend’s PodCampToronto was taking in some wonderful panels by the ‘indies.’ As much as I love cutting up social media experts/rockstars/gurus, something drew me away from the tried & true themes of measurement/ROI/outreach/community-building & instead plopping into fascinating (niche, obscure & quirky, oh my!) conversations & case studies.
This disinclination to attend the ‘usual’ seminars isn’t because I’m too ‘advanced.’ Honestly, it’s the embarrassing behaviour of more than 1/2 the audience…the eye-rolling, gum-popping, pen-clicking “Getta-loadda-Captain-Obvious” routine is even getting old even for me…
Like it or not, this internet thing’s caught on – one person’s ‘obvious’ is another person’s paradigm-shift. Instead of acting like a too-cool-Anglo teen trapped in an ESL course, if you’re ever in an unsatisfying session at an unconference (or anywhere except for a client meeting for that matter…) try this remedy: quietly grab your $#it, stand up, politely pop out of the room & find something else to enlighten you.
Trust me, the content is almost always there in spades, you just need to seek it out. Even if the actual tools being discussed weren’t relevant to my life/work (audio podcasts are not my thing, outside of Stone’s Throw’s irregular mixes and DJ sessions), it was a perfectly-timed integrity-recharge to be around so many people passionately plugging away on their sites & sounds.
Some great summary blog posts are already floating around the interwebs, so I’ll keep this short…One session that struck me with its thoughtful layout, great research, good use of storytelling and composed, humble presenter was Totally Filmi’s Katherine Matthews case study-style presentation of the YouTube premiere of Bollywood film ‘Striker‘. ‘@KayMatthews,’ as she’s known on Twitter, opened my eyes to the sophisticated vast communities assembling around cult film genres in spaces that I’d ignorantly assumed could only be built by/for music nerds (tho not so ignorant as to think that Bollywood is a niche genre, *insert Parry Sounder joke here*, Striker’s part of a sub-genre called ‘hacka’ (sp?) <- thanks to quick fact-check by Kay, it’s spelled “Hatke,” which broadly means outside of the mainstream)
Listening to Katherine describe the smaller studio’s use of its limited promotion budget to invest in social media outreach, how actors engaged fans/viewers in conversations about the film on Twitter & how everyone keeps these conversations afloat despite Striker taking a nosedive at the domestic box office checked off the usual fuzzy case study ingredients for social media conferences…What was especially interesting in her session was her mention of the download tracking, traffic screening, monitoring of commenting patterns, which will better inform international distribution of the Studio18 films (& likely films released by competitors, too) in the future.
Any thoughts on (booming voice) the future of podcasting? It’s still highly unlikely that I’ll subscribe to any of the awesome content I was exposed to this weekend because I love my iPod for songs, not for chats…but I have no qualms about subscribing to an awesome frequently updated YouTube channel, programming it into FrontRow & checking it regularly…Which has led to recent musings about dabbling in serialized video content. Do many of you subscribe to ‘indie’ YouTube channels? Do you bother to upload the content to your iPod/iPhone? Desktop only? Very interested to hear back….