Keeping People Engaged

Once you’ve gathered a decent number of people to your internet presence there’s an awful lot of thought that goes into keeping them engaged. The view counts on my PoPS updates were pretty low, so I devised the Cinematic Study Guide as a method of appealing to a larger number of movie enthusiasts. At the beginning it looked like it was going to work out, but the numbers have already dropped again, so either nobody’s interested in The Croods, or the Study Guides are not the droids I’m looking for.

Probably the best our interactivity got was inviting everyone to draw pictures of the Donald character for a sequence in episode 7. A lot of great pictures came in, people were rallying to the cause of the show, and the artwork looks fantastic in the episode, as everyone will see…someday.

With the Veronica Mars movie dominating Kickstarter, they had a great idea for audience engagement on their YouTube channel. They asked everyone to send in different interpretations of the VMars opening theme song, a cut down version of “We Used to Be Friends” by the Dandy Warhols. They’re selecting the ones they like the best and putting them on their channel. It spurs talented people who love VMars to draw the attention of their friends, families, and extended online networks back to the VMars campaign, the new YouTube channel, and the project as a whole. Here’s the original season 1 opening followed by three of the  interpretations that have come in. The third is a version by my sister Emi and she sent me the clips of her singing into the microphone so I could put the video together.

In other news, these Cinematic Study Guides have been killing my post production time on PoPS. I’ve started putting them together mid-week so that I’d have the uninterrupted weekend hours to get down with the rotoscoping. After about 16 hours of rotoscoping, and several bad cases of roto-hand, I completed yet another shot for the episode. Just one brick at a time, one foot in front of the other, Rome wasn’t built in a day, idle hands are the devil’s roto, and other such wisdoms.

Added to that, this weekend is LA Webfest! Eliza and I are heading out to LA on Friday so I had to get the Study Guide for this weekend done extra early. If anyone who reads this happens to live in LA and wants to come say hi, tickets are cheap. We’re screening in a block of four shows at 8pm on Saturday at the LAX Radisson. The whole show lasts an hour and if you come by, be sure to come introduce yourself. I’ll give you a shiny PoPS pin.

In addition to getting the Study Guide done early, I made a 20’ish-minute video for an event the weekend after we get back. It basically outlines what life is like for an independent content creator, what I have to put into a show like ours, and what I look for in collaborators. But with all these longer videos I’ve been editing of myself talking, I have to say, I have had it with watching myself. I thought the day would never come when I’d get sick of listening to myself talk, but I sure hit the wall this week. I long for the blessed trance-state of video game playing and the nurturing solace of pizza.

Thanks for reading.

–Jarvi

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