24 June 2015

How to sell yourself online

MY NAME IS __________-4

Start by filling in these blanks:

My Name is ___________.
I Make _____________.
For _____________ people.
When they are __________.

Once you’ve filled in the above you’re already on the road to achieving product-market-fit.

If you’d like some detail listen to this workshop I led recently at the Youbloom Conference.

It was for a room full of musicians but applies to anyone who needs to get their product out there.

One of the constant struggles I have with musicians is trying to get them to market themselves.

It’s actually the single biggest issue with breaking acts.

Great music is a given.

It’s not easy to make great music but without it you’re nowhere.

Once you have the great music what comes next?

What comes next if you have limited resources?

I passionately believe in the power of online video to help spread a message.

If you have something amazing you can get it out there.

Virality is like lightening – it’s impossible to predict – even Upworthy can’t do it.

Putting some creativity into the process can massively increase your chances of success.

That’s what this workshop is about.

Join in where-ever you are.

I’d love to know how you get on.

Please tweet me @donalscannell or respond here and let me know what you think and/or ask some questions.

12 June 2015

Periscope and Meerkat open up massive opportunities.


Periscope and Meerkat have transformed live video streaming in just three months.

Live streaming now requires just the push of one button.

Periscope is Scanarama’s favourite of the two because it’s got a larger audience thanks to the Twitter tie-ins. It archives your streams so people can watch them later and you can save them to your phone’s camera roll for uploading elsewhere. With Meerkat you can’t do that in-app.

One big disadvantage of both apps is that recordings come with comments burnt into the footage. This will limit your options if you want to edit the footage later.

A really interesting development is that shooting video in portrait now works – it’s time has finally come.

Comedian Tom Green also clearly prefers Periscope. He’s been filling the dead time between when he arrives in a city and when he plays a gig walking around, chatting to who-ever he bumps into. It’s inane and compelling at the same time.

Watching it on Youtube isn’t as thrilling as watching it live on Periscope. Download the app and browse around yourself. You’ll find it more engaging than flicking through random TV shows that all feel like you’ve seen them before.

Periscope democratises something that used to be very complicated. Scanarama have produced loads of big live-streamed events like Smartsounds, Imelda May and Biffy Clyro yet we don’t feel threatened by something that makes streaming so simple. Far from it.

We’re busy writing Periscope into our plans because we love the possibilities it opens up. It’s so simple now to stream live that it’s thrilling.

Others are embracing Periscope too – even Uefa – at Enterprise Ireland’s Sports Marketing Conference yesterday, their marketing manager Noel Mooney was full of praise for the app’s potential to increase demand for live events.

Television started as a completely live format. You needed equipment the size of a house to do it then. Now all you need is your phone.

We are only at the beginning of what Periscope and Meerkat can do.

Let us know if you’d like to be informed the next time we go live with a stream so you can join in with the fun.

02 April 2013

Five questions to consider before commissioning video.


Five questions to consider before commissioning video:

All of these questions may seem obvious but you’d be surprised at the conversations which they start.

1. Why do you want this video?

2. Who is the audience?

3. How do you want to be perceived?

4. Who needs to approve it?

5. When do you want the content delivered and ready to go?

These are the questions we always start with. Figuring out the answers makes the entire production process quicker and smoother.


02 April 2013

Blindfold Gig – The Gospel According To Matthew by Life After Modelling

Irish times gospel


This blindfold gig which happened on Sunday and features in today’s Irish Times was produced by Scanarama with Life After Modelling who we’ve been working with on and off since before our company was even formed. The band have been on hiatus for quite a few years and this gig was their first live event in eight years. Upon hearing their upcoming ‘The Gospel According To Matthew’, our instant feeling was the usual rock circuit was to be avoided for Life After Modelling.

There were many reasons for this but chief amongst them was a feeling that it’s getting harder and harder for artists to get noticed today as it gets easier and easier to release music into the world and as music becomes easier to obtain – similar views expressed by Thom Yorke in his excellent interview with Alec Baldwin which aired yesterday. The other main reason was that the songs on ‘The Gospel According To Matthew’ had a narrative structure and a central character.

The idea was hatched that Life After Modelling would turn the album into a show for theatres. The audience would get to sit in comfortable seats and enjoy the music without distraction.

Easter Sunday in Smock Alley was the start of that process. When we first approached Patrick Sutton and Cliona Dukes about putting the show on there they agreed straight away and have been incredibly supportive every step of the way. This first show was all about giving the songs and script an airing, letting them loose and seeing what people made of them.

The blindfold gig bit feels obvious in retrospect. What better way to get people to focus on what they hear and not what they see? What better way to separate yourself from the noise than just by focusing on the sound?

There was much discussion beforehand about how the audience would react, would they peek, would they last the whole performance. They did love it and the word of mouth is building already.

This is only the beginning of helping Life After Modelling bring their creation into the world and already the reaction has been amazing, which is really encouraging.

The next stage is to meet with dramaturgs and theatre producers to see what help we can get from that world to bring this music based project deeper into theatrical territory. All suggestions welcome!