One of our members Susan O’Connor wanted to preview her talk for SXSW next month. It was on videogames, her specialty, and the surreal world of videogame development. She presented it to a few of our members, including Rena. They offered advice and suggestions on Susan’s rough draft of her talk. Through the critiques and working out ideas, Susan found that she perhaps did not want to actually present on the topic as planned. Susan is now preparing an even better presentation!
Rena’s class was, in her words, “Awesome!” She talked to a motivated group of makers and manufacturers and even illustrators about getting their line ready for wholesale. One participant flew down from Portland, OR for the day (from Scout Books) and left us a bunch of free samples. Everyone was excited, and one of the participants has a book coming out soon too; we may do a stamp-carving workshop with her.
Top Tips for DIY PR
This panel was led by Genevieve Brazelton, Emma Starks, Katherine Nelson, and moderated by Jordan Kushins. Each panelist spoke to what their top tip is for those interested in doing their own PR. Topics that were covered included:
Defining your story- find out what makes you different, and who is your ideal client.
Understanding how a reporter works– investigate deadlines, finding out why your pitch relevant right now, don’t pitch everywhere.
The importance of photography- good photos can dictate coverage of your product, have an arsenal of photos for different audiences, and if anything do invest in quality photography.
Building relationships through social media- chose 2-3 social media platforms that fit your brand identity, and stick with what is fun for you. Don’t force yourself to use every platform. Follow influencers and peers, and don’t be afraid to reach out. Interesting connections can be made from commenting on statuses or asking questions.
The audience asked a lot of really good questions, and received a nice range of answers/feedback.
Getting Social: A Beginners Guide to Social Media
Meighan O’Toole loves the internet and she wants you to love it too. This class covered a variety of topics including: how to post, tweet, and pin correctly. Best practices- the do’s and don’ts of social engagement. Cultivating community and brand evangelism. Publishing platforms, helpful apps and tips. Meighan stressed the basics- decide what social media platforms make sense for you, define your voice, and create a posting strategy. The class learned nifty tricks to make your Facebook posts neat and tidy, how to tag correctly, and hashtag best practices.
The Creative Professional: Personal Image and Your Brand
Shana Astrachan of Fox & Doll Hair & Makeup (and one of our part-time residents) led a small group in a discussion of how your personal image can affect the branding of your business. She advised that you can be creative with how you show your branding- if you make jewelry you should wear at least one piece of your own creation. If you are a designer, you can have one of your designs made into an iPhone case or have stickers or labels made for various items that are seen in public. The class was also shown the 10 basic makeup steps that can serve as a starting point for more creative looks.
–Ashley & Christina