The lovely Mary Carty was guest lecturer in the Growing Pains program today, taking the participants through a workshop covering everything from business idea to monetisation, with lots of exercises and case study examples.
With her background as an artist and curator as well as a savvy business woman, Mary offers the unique perspective of both the artist and the entrepreneur. What stuck with me most is her insistance on the users’ or audience love of what you do.
Now, we talk alot about shifting perspectives from the auteur to user-centered in digital storytelling. Since the distribution model and business models of the media industry are collapsing, user engagement becomes central to both financing projects as well as extending their relevance of stories.
From auteur to community builder
It’s not hard to agree that we need to stress the value proposition for the users in our projects. After all, we’re not only creators and producers of content, we’re also users ourselves. Our short attention span and constant flexing of the “What’s in it for me”-muscle makes it pretty clear that we need to create experiences someone need (and pay for).
Mary took it one step further, insisting that you should test your product or service until you find out what customers really loves, to the point of being devestated if it disappears and can’t be replaced by another brand. This love is the basis of the community that you need to nurture to build the tribes that help you market your product and pay for it (if you remember to charge them, of course).
As the gatekeepers of the old value chains disappear, it is no longer powerful financiers or distributors that decide what stories get to be told – the storytellers able to reach her users can do that for herself, if she figures out what makes their hearts skip a beat.
A simple fact, but think about the brands you could say you love to this point. How can your story be of equal importance?
Explore your business idea
In the evening, Media Evolution invited media creatives and entrepreneurs for a shorter inspirational talk on the same topics, so we made use of her time in Malmö well.