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Extending The Audience - Mind The Gap

image from www.1hq.co.uk

Emerging out of the results and lessons learnt from the 2014 Arts and Audiences Conference in Rekjavik, where the Digital Audience Experience (DAEx) was conceived as a real time experiement to extend the reach of the physical event audience using digital tools. Extend The Audiences was commissioned by BAFA - British Arts Festivals Assocation's Mind The Gap conference in 2015.

Check out the legacy scrapbook webpage. It also hosts the audio of the talk I delivered to provide context to the initiative.

I wish to begin by talking about the finances. Essential expenses are non-negotiable, (travel, accomocation and the provision of a sensible meals allowence) a digital audience expeience can cost a little as you can afford. I remember well something I learn attending various business seminars, Marketing should be seen as an core investment not an extranious expense. The same is true of when considering an audience. What is the value of your online audience? Do you want them to pay for the online offering? Do you want them to subsidise the provision on the venue-to-web content? Is the content produced by a social media team as bragging-promotioanl-ambient-fodder or, Do you want to encourage the participation of those who wish to join an online audience 'experience'? Are you wanting an active or passive audience?

The pursose of both events (Arts and Audiences / BAFA's Mind The Gap) was to bring together like-minded professional working in the sectors of 'arts and culture audience development' in regards to the Nordic Councils' Arts and Audiences Conference and for organisers or arts, music, culture and science festivals in regards to UK based oganisation BAFA.

Ever since the conception of MediaCampNottingham which chose to run a business event on a saturday, my own audience demographic tartget has been those looking to continue their own personal and professional development, often refered to as CPD. Depending on where within an organisation you are employed opportunities to develop knowledge can be limited. Being a regular conference delegate on behalf of your employer is a privalege afforded to a few. That opportunity may require a report back to the wider employ in the department or it may be a peer privelige to provide opportunity to meet fellow professionals working within the sector in which you work. This tends to be primarily to share findings, research and resulting case studies. Influental people are invited to deliver talk, presentations and lead workshops.

A good conference can be inspiring, informative, enriching and instrumental to developing further from a knowledge and industry underderstanding and in networking with future project partners.

But not everyone gets to attend. Extending the Audience is about embodying that sentiment. With wifi and connected meeting rooms with projectors I've long been an advocate for streaming events into board rooms with refreshements, or groups meeting geographically to collectively watch a livestream of an event. Platforms like Appear and Google Hangout can take 8 connections. That can be single face to face conections or windows on entire satilite micro events or gatherings all connecting to the 'video room' for a untiting experience using the digital environment as the common space.

I'm always looking for organisation wanting to explore the digital potential of extending their traditional audience offering.

Using existing mainstream platforms and direct dialogue with the registered digital audience registrants I  create online audience experiences with real value to those individuals participating remotely. If you were wondering I am an independent social media practitioner and capable of operating independently of a venue's infrastructure. I require power and a good 4G mobile signal.
 
For BAFA's Mind The Gap - Extend the Audience the following apps formed a toolset shared with anyone wanting to take part.

  1. Appear.in a browser based online video meeting space for post session discussion after watching live streamed presentations or for digital audience lounge-chat breakouts
  2. Periscope/Bambuser to mobile livestream
  3. Blab.im to deliver panel discussions with digital audience opportunities to join the panel and enter the discussion.
  4. BEME to facilitate fly-on-the-wall, first person perspective video streams of the guided tour event elements independent of the fixed location conference venue.

All the apps in the toolkit for that event are details on the scrapbook page along with download links for iOS and Android versions of the apps where availible. Its also about enabling the audience you have geographically being able to share with ease with thier own networked audiences too.

Interested? Get in touch through the PCM contact web page or Tweet me @pcmcreative

I have so many plans for this initiative. So much potential for audience reach as well as legacy documentation.

 

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