In case you missed our #CreativeHustles: Digital Tools for the New Age Artist in partnership with Word N Sound International Youth Poetry and Live Music Festival, our first issue of the #HustleHandbook brings you all the tips, presentations and career information you need to be a New Age Artist.
Brought to you by Live Magazine SA and British Council Connect ZA, the #CreativeHustles are a monthly platform for up-and-coming creatives aged 18 to 25 years to engage with established industry professionals and arts practitioners, receive creative and career advice as well as build relationships with professionals. The November sessions explored how new platforms influence poetry and literature in SA and the UK today and included panelists Afurakan, Nicole Klassen, Toni Stuart, Qhakazambalikayise Thato Mthembu and Sylvia Harrison.
The next #CreativeHustle will be announced in January 2014.
PANELISTS’ TOP TIPS
Know yourself. Be clear about what it is that you do, but at the same time don’t feel pressure to box your creativity. This will help you decide how to feature yourself and work digitally.
Content is king. The more (great) content you have, the richer your platforms will be. Prioritise uploading new content as much as possible. If you find this extremely difficult because you are busy with other things, there are ways to schedule in advance through tools like Hootsuite for Twitter, Facebook schedule function for fan pages and blog sites also allow you to schedule posts in the future.
Visuals, visuals, visuals. High quality visuals are key to successful audience engagement for your digital platforms.
Be realistic. Only set up online platforms you can manage, there’s nothing more frustrating for a fan and viewer to take time, energy and data to search for you, only to find out that the last time you updated your site was 2 years ago.
Know your audiences. Always keep your audience in mind. Think about what works for them and tailor your content to be relevant and specific to their needs.
Your creative process is interesting. Engage with your audience in the creative and writing process because that in itself is content. For example, post pictures of you painting, samples of new music or video clips of your theatre piece’s working progress.
Networking. Social media platforms such as Twitter have made it so much easier to gain access to, and network with, media and international artists.
Professional vs Personal. Always keep in mind what your intention is and how you want to be perceived professionally. It’s very easy to blur the lines between your personal online presence and your professional one. For example, if you are extremely personal on your social media platforms, that is, talk about break ups and what you had for lunch, this may not be appropriate for your professional career. Perhaps you should have two accounts, one for personal and one for professional, or take your personal content into more private spaces.
Protect yourself. Since the plagiarism of intellectual property has increased with the digital revolution, it’s important to protect your work. Make sure you read the terms and conditions of sites and using a watermark on your images can also help protect your photography.
Digital revenue. Plug into different digital channels from audio (Soundcloud), video (YouTube), website or blog (WordPress or Tumblr), because digital revenues work in volume.
Invest. Finally, you need to invest your time and money into making your digital platforms work for. If you don’t look professional online, you don’t look professional at all.
Cape Town Events
Off the Wall Poetry Weekly on Thursday nights at Bolo Bolo Anarchist Bookshop, Lower Main Road, Observatory
InZync Poetry Sessions Last Friday of every month, in Stellenbosh
Miss Kiki Presents Every second Wednesday night, at Lion’s Corner Tavern, Lower Main Road, Observatory
Jam That Session
Open Book Festival
Gauteng Poetry Events
DIGITAL AND SOCIAL MEDIA
CAREERS & TRAINING
There are many digital and social media training workshops and courses listed on Bizcommunity.
Creative writing courses are offered by many of the universities including University of Cape Town, University of Pretoria and Wits University.
Taking a Performing Arts degree at any of the country’s universities could help developing your skills and confidence for performance poetry.
Don’t forget to complete our 3 min digital trends survey for the chance to win R200 airtime or data! We will send you the results in the new year.