What Caught My Eye, IBC 2018
I spent much of 2018 living in a small campervan, Roxy, sleeping on the edges of lakes and forests in remote parts of Europe, with only a mobile phone and 3GB data per month for company.
I was supporting my partner, Gavin, as he ran 4000km across the continent, from Paris to Istanbul, following the original route of the Orient Express – though with a somewhat lower level of luxury in the living arrangements. I posted about the adventure as I travelled, across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and on our blog. I was also filming a documentary, exploring the concept of “home” and what it means to the different people I met along the way.
Living on a budget and on the road, I was heavily reliant on just my smart phone to keep in touch with the world and share the incredible experiences I was having – pictures for Insta, daily diaries and video clips for Facebook and the odd observation or update on Twitter. The joy of these platforms is to capture and instantly share a timely experience or thought and the challenge is how to do this quickly and with a unique and captivating style.
It was frequently frustrating to have to wait a couple of days to get a strong enough 4G connection to upload a 30 second video clip or to tether another device to my phone to utilise my limited data allowance. The bulk of my documentary filming was done on a Panasonic G7 CSC with supplementary footage from a XJ-Cam Action Camera and my smart phone. I recall one particularly special afternoon in a city park in Vienna, driving around in pursuit of a WiFi hotspot and trying to keep the engine revving to supply enough power to charge the laptop and drives whilst editing and uploading footage. There was even a wooden spoon involved but that’s a long story. Suffice it to say, it wasn’t ideal.
There are, of course, numerous apps and accessories already available to help, such as multi-platform scheduling apps, mobile editing products and plug’n’play devices to fit most smart phones. With my newly found digital nomadic lifestyle, I’m excited to discover what technology and products I must get my hands on before my next trip. What are the latest apps to help people on the go get their content out to the world, even when you live in a van? Which bits of kit can really replace my camera and turn my phone or tablet into everything I need, with a 12V power supply which even Roxy could handle?
And then what? So you’ve got great content, you’ve put it out in the world – what’s the point? During my trip I uncovered vast communities of people to connect with. Each community shares a different passion; for me, it’s the vanlifers, the wanderlusters, the indie filmmakers and, following Gavin’s extreme challenge, the ultrarunners. Which are the apps and products out there that can help manage my engagement with the different communities, getting the right content with the right hashtags to the right groups on the right platform?
I’d like to explore options that suit the lone traveller right up to mid to large scale businesses. I run workshops to help organisations develop their digital engagement strategy in order to achieve wider business goals. We explore the best use of different platforms and content to suit their needs and strategise on how to make this a core part of their activity. The concept is the same: capture, share and engage. However the way in which different companies or, indeed, individuals might achieve this to their best advantage can be wildly different, not to mention led by widely varying budgets.
At IBC this year, I’ll be exploring new unknowns in this ever evolving industry and gathering the top tips to get Roxy fully kitted out for our next big adventure. Join me to find out what I discover at What Caught My Eye on Sunday at 08:30.