Yes, at first, I hadn’t heard of TRC Media either. After looking up their website, it turns out they’re a charity that provides training to the media sector – TV, publishing, games and digital/web creatives.
Their Cross Creative programme is a 9 month ‘course’ which takes together a number of people that are creative decision makers in their organisation and exposes them to high-level speakers to help them grow their business and find interesting new partners to work with.
The class of 2011-2012 are:
Kate Ho from Interface3
Neil Barr from Alienation Digital
Sara Kinnear from Screenmedia
Claire Scally from Illumina Scotland
Simon Meek from Tern Digital
Joe Tree from Blipfoto
Robert Farmer from Extra Mile Studios
Jenny Todd from Canongate
A mix of broadcasting, publishing, games and digital agencies.
Our first speaker was the energetic Kirsty Hunter from the Project Factory. Kirsty has had a prolific life as Head of Interactive at Lion TV and has just started the UK arm of the Project Factory. She has produced a number of multi-platform productions which spanned across web, mobile and tv, and gave us some tips on how to create and manage cross-platform productions. This included:
— On finding partnering organisations: start with the commissioners – they’re the gatekeepers but can also put together partnerships if they see good fits between companies. Also, be single-minded about the people you’re chasing! Don’t give up.
— When negotiating terms, try to put your technical speak into something that the other partner can understand.
— Make sure who know who is doing what – who is creating the content? Who is responsible for updating content? What does the workflow look like? Think about this up-front!
— Decide who owns the data. Who owns the data that gets generated. Particularly sticky issue when it comes to user generated data.
— Try and build in a contingency into the budget. This is not always possible – especially with small productions, but at least try.
— Decide how you’re going to credit all the partners in the project. Even relevant at the start because you should be thinking about press and getting attention for your project.
— Have an exit strategy. No, not for when things go wrong. But for when you have to hand over assets. How will the data be handed over? Who will do the maintainence afterwards? Don’t just slash and run. Be responsible.
– Find people that you have creative chemistry with. It’s rare to find people that you can brainstorm with so once you’ve found them, try and find ways to work on as many projects with them as possible.
— Understand how to make money from all parts of the cow. This includes the digital rights to the music and sounds.
— Be flexible about what you can get out of projects. It’s NOT always about the money. Maybe think about digital rights to the work, or partnerships. Be open and flexible.
— Have a criteria for doing work. Don’t just do things blindingly (or do, but just accept you can be chasing for work all the time). Be strategic about what each project can add to your portfolio and the growth of the company.
If you’re interested to read more, you can check out Kirsty’s presentation which covers some of this stuff over at slideshare.
Not sure about anyone else, but by the end I just felt like I was whacked with some of the most useful insights into the broadcasting and multi-platform industry. Around the head. Hard. They say that building a company is partly about how quick you can learn – but I’m guessing it’s also about who you get to learn from too.
The afternoon was filled with presentations from everyone on the programme (bar Simon and Bobby who couldn’t make it). It was a great introduction to what some of the companies were doing – especially in relation to the digital scene in Glasgow. There is still this divide between the east and west which I won’t go into here — it’s just important to say that it’s important to try and make links with the folks from the ‘weeg’.
Next session is a month from now. Looking forward to reporting back!