This con was one of those I thought I’d never get to anytime soon. As far as I knew it was only in America, and America is about number 55 on the list of countries I wanted to visit. So imagine for me, an adult woman with curly, frizzy hair squealing, dancing and stomping her feet in excitement. That was my reaction when I found out Vidcon was coming to Australia this year.
I was so excited about Vidcon because, number one, the event gave me a chance to meet one of its co-creators, Hank Green. Number two, I’d have a chance to understand a bit more about “what makes this video creator industry tick”. Before I get into my analysis of the Vidcon/Youtube community allow me to start at the beginning…
I put up my hand to volunteer on the registration desk for Vidcon. Why? I enjoy it. Volunteering enriches my experience, every single time. I meet a great bunch of people who I’d be happy to work with for any con. They were thoughtful, considerate, caring, willing to share knowledge and willing to listen. From a volunteer’s perspective, everything ran smoothly at the registration. Though, when setting up for the next day, I am not sure why we needed so many of us at 6:30 in the morning, maybe that is something to improve in future? Have, maximum, three people for the 6:30-7:30 shift to help with setup and roster the rest of registration volunteers to start at 8?
In any case, my Vidcon experience started with heart-stopping excitement as Hank Green dropped by our volunteer orientation. He chatted with all of us and while most asked for a selfie, I wanted a hug. Hank, you give a surprisingly tight hug and I love that!
After a welcome to country, where I felt I had been truly welcomed to Melbourne country, I went to a “Crafting a Community” panel. It was like I had stumbled into a more engaging version of the “how to engage stakeholders” workshops I’m more used to. There was the usual advice of listening to your audience (clients) and helping your community find ways to connect. One suggestion I really liked was, try doing a live stream every now and then, answer your communities questions and engage with them in a different way.
Let me segway slightly into different ways of engaging people, how many times would you do a survey at conferences if it looked like this?!
I went to an EduTube panel that also made quite an impression. I didn’t know there was a word for the phenomenon of mixing education with entertainment, apparently its edutainment. Many of the educational channels I watch on YouTube have an element of entertainment in them and I wondered if this what we are doing now with educational video, what’s the future? Someone, say virtual reality, please, please, please.
Hank Green also reminded everyone of this:
Armed with what I learned from Vidcon, I’ve felt confident enough to start my own channel and plan content for it. Though I’m still learning how many times a month one should upload video to keep audiences engaged…
In any case, I’m keen to attend Vidcon Australia next year as a Creator and not just a fangirl.
Till next time!
DFTBA (Don’t Forget to be Awesome)