First Day of the Conference

Of course, we did have a lot of fun. But boy, did we learn a lot. Below a summary of the sessions we went to on the first day. More to follow later on:

Keynote
Discussion with Howard Lindzon who sold his podcast about financial stock market to CBS for about $5 mln. He created his show in 8 months and is using actors in his show. Some highlights:

  • Each show costs about $1000 – $2000
  • 25,000 downloads per episode per day
  • Each episode about 3 minutes
  • Started because conventional news on financial stock markets was not fullfilling a need
  • TV should rot in hell, although they still have the cashflow and are important in the media space
  • No future for minimedia companies if they don’t focus on the business. If you want to sell your content and get a living out of it, act like a business person. If you do it for passion, fine but don’t expect to make a living out of it.

Field Production Strategies for Video Podcasting (Rich Harrington (RHED Pixel))

  • Produce more than 1 episode in 1 day/session
  • Mobile studio
  • Tip: change your clothes for every episode
  • Treat podcast production as Electronic News Gathering style shoot
  • Spend money to save money:Proper size crew: various multi-disciplines people (min. 2)
  • Multi-cam: simplifies post-production
  • Use hard disk recorders (use tape as back-up): saves time in capturing
  • Balancing format:
  • Acquisition format: HD currently complicated
  • Keep it short! Better impression to the client.
  • Keep shot ration (footage vs used material) very low! (approx 2 or 3:1)
  • Use shotlist, plan ahead, but remain flexible on location
  • Map the production
  • What is the content, who is the audience
  • What is the roll outplan/frequency?
  • When published, be sure to have more than 1 episode and backdate first few
  • What is the production plan
  • Multi-camera shoots
  • Use similar cameras! with exact the same settings (shooting format, codecs, frame size etc)
  • Use tripod and external mics
  • Use clapperboard: looks silly, but clients love it!
  • Use QP card – Color card
    • small and lightweight inexpensive ($7-8 each) and disposable, gives true white, true black and intermediate grey
  • Use light: Diva Lite
  • Tips:
  • Use photos, titles etc.
  • Use a propter (~autocue)
  • With low light situation, increase gain to max +6 dB (not higher!), fix the rest in post
  • Be careful with ECUs: could be problematic in post when using graphics
  • Editing tips:
  • Edit in original captured format, compress when project is finalized
  • Enables you to offer client various end products (DVD, Flash, H.264 etc)
  • Frame sizes (output) is defined by the data rate

Interviews that Rock – Heidi Miller (Heidi Miller Presents)

  • Prepare, prepare, prepare
  • Research what the interest of your guest is
  • If you think it’s interesting, many of your listeners will
  • Balance between what your listeeners want and what your guests want
  • Ask your guests questions to discuss, but also your audience: involve them upfront via your blog/website!
  • Storytelling! What is the story of your guest!
    • Start questions with: What, where, why, how…etc…Tell me about…
    • Show your research!
    • Don’t send questions upfront to your guest, but key topics
    • Send reminder day before with topics, time, location, way of communication (if on distance, e.g. Skype etc). Make clear that end result will be edited (either audio or video)
    • 2 minutes before interview: ease them down, offer drink, physical contact (hand shake, hug), pre-interview about themselves
    • Start interview: don’t forget to hit record!
    • How much should you talk yourself? Involving yourself (even personal) can be a reason for guests to listen to your show

Flow:

  • Make sure it flows
  • Enthousiasmize/engage, use your own tonage/intonation to increase flow
  • SUL: Shut Up and Listen, do not be afraid of silence at the end of an answer: dare to wait longer than initially feels comfortable.
  • Keep tough questions for the end
  • Repeat name of guest frequently.

After the interview:

  • Ask directly after the interview how it went
  • Send thank you note afterwards

Difficult situations:

  • Puffy guests: say that it’s an interesting topic, but your time is valuable so…
  • Dull guests: forget it, may be not worth publishing
  • Complicated guests: ask them to translate it for 5-year olds

On the spot interviews:

  • Who: get some info upfront from programme, bios etc
  • Where and when: try to do it shortly after a session
  • How to invite: “Would you mind to have a short chat with me…
  • What: look for story and surprises

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