The two presentations I attended for opening day at SXSW 2011 provided me two topics I wanted go over with you guys.
1. Tim O’Reilly Follows the Joy vs. Following the Money
O’Reilly is a tech legend. He’s been predicting the big ideas in tech before they happen for 3 decades and has built a publishing house that’s incredibly well respected. The talk was more of an informal review of his life, but the thing that stood out for me was his focus on following a bliss regardless of money.
Even though O’Reilly’s company is worth at least $100 million and has been in business for over 30 years, he refuses to sell out or exploit the ideas he promotes. This is a man who’s had numerous millionaires and billionaires who’ve told him that his books were the instigators for the wealth they’ve created.
As an artist, your first goal is most likely not money, but if you want to do this full time and pay your bills it’s probably on your mind. You’ll take a job or whatever you need to ensure you can afford to create. I think it’s worth remembering why you want to do this when times may be tough. You are choosing to follow a joy. You’ll do what’s necessary to make it work. Money comes second.
2. True Blood Helps Create Fanatics By Building A Rabbit Hole Of Content
I’m not really fan and I haven’t even seen an episode but I was intrigued by the idea of the talk: Providing the grease to move casual fan to fanatic and creating an environment/relationship to make word of mouth easy.
Much of the talk was about the marketing campaign they’d done. It was interesting and thought provoking but the money and people needed to execute that strategy doesn’t really fit the DIY artist. What did seem relevant was the idea of building a rabbit hole of content that a fan can really immerse themselves in if they want to. They’ve built many levels of engagement to keep fans occupied, that it’s mind boggling.
As a DIY artist, you might not have money on your side, but you do have time and your creativity. The more tunes you have available, the more chances a potential fan has to graduate into a real fan. The more interesting videos you create, the exact same thing occurs.