After such a challenging year, I am so grateful when my work receives a production.
Especially a LIVE production!
Thrilled to announce that Mad Libs Live! is currently enjoying a run at the Creekside Theatre Fest. This already brings me SO much joy -- but I am not only grateful for that.
The production also received a rave review and kids are reportedly LOVING the show! Knowing that kids are getting to see Mad Libs Live! in person and are having a great time means the world to me, as that has been my intention from the moment I began the journey of bringing Mad Libs Live! to life.
Special thanks to Concord Theatricals for getting Mad Libs Live! out into the world to new audiences.
Here's to more __________ Mad Libs Live! productions!
Check out the review of the show here:
"Mad Libs LIVE! at Creekside Theatre Fest is (Adjective) Great!"
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For all you people who said New York City was dead -- you were dead wrong.
As spring is now in full swing, so is the city. Every day there seems to be a new thing to do and a new place to go.
Among those new places to go is the amazing new public park literally in the Hudson River, Little Island. Barry Diller funded this only-in-NYC floating green space gem in partnership with the Hudson River Park Trust. And the 2.4 acre project, which has been in the works for a number of years, could not be more inspiring.
Little Island would have always been welcome, but, after such an especially trying year, it could not have opened at a better time.
I urge you to visit Little Island before things fully open up and it gets flooded with tourists.
If you do plan on visiting Little Island soon, I encourage you to check out my "mini-tour" to give you a sense of all the great experiences that await you -- and for some important things to keep in mind before you go.
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You are not just a content creator -- you are a content re-creator.
Chances are you've put a lot of thought into that blog post, case study, or report. It's a solid piece of content, right?
So, why should that outstanding blog post, case study, or report be the end of the road? Why not leverage and maximize the heck out of it to bolster your brand and reach more people?
How do you do that? By repurposing the content.
Repurposing content is exactly what it sounds like -- it's taking content assets you've already created and adjusting them to fit a different channel or medium, or finding new ways to expand the content further using the same topics or subtopics.
Why is repurposing your content important?
In other words, repurposing your content is the gift that keeps on giving -- and giving, and giving!
With so much technology available today and constantly evolving, it's foolish not to utilize some of the many methods to get your content out there and milk your hard work for all its worth.
If you repurpose and distribute your content strategically and holistically, chances are this will help boost the SEO for your content and ultimately boost awareness of your personal or business brand.
While there are endless ways to repurpose your content, this one is the most important method that I think you should be, er, focussing on.
It's the top brand-building strategy in content marketing
YouTube is the second most used search engine in the world, so it makes sense that video is one of the most popular tools for marketers.
According to Wyzowl, roughly 86% of businesses use video as a method to support their brands. And a Smart Insights article stated that 92% of marketers indicated that video was a key part of their strategies. And, of course, one of the marketing world's greatest oracles, Gary Vaynerchuk, has been a big fan of video for years.
And then the pandemic hit.
And everything changed -- fast.
Video became the main tool most used to connect for the better part of 2020.
I was a already fan of video before the pandemic; I had begun purchasing gear and producing work. So, I was ready to create my own original video content during the pandemic, as well as repurpose high-quality written content created by others that deserved more attention.
A quick case study of sorts, and a content repurposing example
When I read Indie Theater Fund's Emergency Grant Report based on the funding the organization provided New York City theatre artists at the onset of the pandemic, I recognized immediately that this was a valuable piece of content.
It deserved way more than just living in an obscure Google Doc.
The data and testimonials were crying out to be repurposed into a video.
Here are the three simple steps I took to make the PSA repurposing plan happen:
Indie Theater Fund used the first anniversary of the theater shutdown in New York to publish the video on YouTube. The organization also promoted the video on social. Creating social posts promoting the video was also a form of repurposing. And the social posts sparked comments that could also be used for future content. And on it goes!
Based on the positive comments I saw, I know the PSA will add value to Indie Theater Fund.
Take a look at the PSA when you have two minutes. Compare the report to the video.
I'd love to know what you think!
Do you have high-quality content that you're ready to repurpose into a video to build awareness for your brand? I bet you do! Let's strategize!
Are you looking to find ways to repurpose your content?
In this latest episode of "TAKING FIVE WITH..." I chat with a comedic and multi-talented actor, singer, improviser and creator who you will undoubtedly recognize – even if you don’t know their name.
But now you will!
In this episode, we cover...
Find out the answers to these questions and more -- in just five minutes!
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Above is just a small sampling of the Broadway shows I've seen over the years.
While working on a project recently, I went through several boxes where I store my Playbills. I only needed to find one specific Playbill, but it was hard not to pause and acknowledge the wave of feelings that washed over me each time I came upon a program that sparked a memory.
I've been fortunate to work in the theatre industry in one way or another for more years than I care to admit. And long before I began working in the industry, I was an avid Broadway attendee.
There are so many Broadway songs that evoke strong feelings for me, each feeling unique and dependent on the narrative of the show, and where I was in my life at that moment while I was in the theater.
We all have different favorite shows and songs and we respond to them in our own way -- but I think we all understand in the same way that sense of a fundamental, very personal experience that Broadway evokes.
So today, in honor of how much Broadway has meant to me and how much I've missed it over the past year, I will be listening to a song list I put together of some of my favorites tunes.
I think you'll find some of your favorites in there, too?
The playlist is called "Robin's Broadway Faves" and the running time is about what a standard Broadway show running time would be. I look forward to putting on my Bose headphones and letting this one-of-kind medley seep into my soul.
This combo of songs weaves its own new narrative. Shuffle them, and you'll create another new narrative.
That's what I hope for Broadway when it returns. New narratives, new beginnings.
I hope you enjoy my playlist.
What are some of your Broadway favorites and why? What songs should I add in?
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We’ve all been hearing since March 2020 that we need to be cautious.
We need to wear masks around people from outside our household, we need to stay six feet apart, we need to wash our hands for the duration of “Happy Birthday," and, heck, we all just need to stay home where it’s safe!
Don't take unnecessary risks!
I’ve been following these directions (for the most part) and, thankfully, I’ve remained healthy.
But my subconscious has begun to rebel. The other day, I found myself far less cautious in one of my dreams.
I was at a local mom and pop specialty shop that sold high-quality Italian meats and cheeses. I saw other people in the store not wearing masks. Why aren't they wearing masks, I thought? Wait, I'm not wearing a mask either. Why am I not wearing a mask? Did COVID "end?" Am I dreaming? Is that gorgeous-looking sample of sliced steak that the deli owner is proffering -- fully exposed to human respiratory droplets -- safe to eat?
I ate it. It was delicious. And I woke up to tell about it.
After my room came into focus and I got my bearings, I quickly reviewed the scene before it evaporated. As I delved into the meaning, a realization surfaced:
Has the abundance of caution I've been taking to protect my health seeped into other areas of my life?
Am I currently not taking risks that I should be taking?
I decided the dream was a wake-up call.
Nothing is certain. That was true before COVID and it will remain true when we emerge from this surreal chapter. We delude ourselves whenever we believe we have control over future outcomes. But, at the same time, we need to take action toward our goals in order to make any progress.
And going for goals, well, that involves a measure of risk-taking. Always has, always will. And, if we don't go for our goals, we don't get to enjoy the small wins along the way.
And that’s what life is ultimately. A path paved with potential risks and potential small, happy wins. That's how I see it anyway.
My dream reminded me that, while I need to be mindful about COVID risks, I need to be conscious about inadvertently allowing "an abundance of caution" to serve as a blanket template for how I live my life.
An abundance of caution does not provide space for abundance.
You, too. Remember the goals you’ve stayed healthy for. Keep on keeping on in your quest to make them a reality.
A thrilling path filled with risks -- and abundance -- is before you.
Check out this book by Danielle LaPorte and this podcast hosted by Ilise Benun for awesome inspiration about taking risks in your creativity and work goals.
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2/2/2021 0 Comments
You probably can't wait to walk into a building to see live shows again.
Yet, it's clear that even when IRL performances do come back - online performances and events will still endure in some form.
But that's a good thing.
Of course, virtual shows will never replace that unique energy that artists and audiences share in a live setting.
But being forced to go online this past year has allowed arts organizations to reach new audiences they wouldn't have otherwise from a geographical standpoint and an accessibility standpoint.
If you work at one of those arts organizations, you're probably starting to take a long-term view of virtual programming and how you can find opportunities for online content in the future.
Because, number one, it's imperative to hold on to these diverse and historically underserved digitally mined audience members -- and to cultivate more of them!
And, number two, research shows that people who stream content are 67% more likely to buy a ticket to similar live events. This means your virtual content will likely increase local demand for live performances.
Exciting stuff, huh?
So, given all this, what's your strategy to retain your digital audience and further expand your reach to connect with potential new fans of your organization?
One suggestion for where to start -- focus on enhancing your SEO.
What exactly is SEO?
I suspect you already have an idea of SEO what it is, but basically defined:
"SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, which is the practice of
Whether your arts organization is already programming performances online or planning to, you'll want to find ways to bolster your organization's reach and authority -- especially if you're a small to mid-sized company. After all, you're now among a whole world of arts organizations competing for eyeballs on the digital stage!
Reviewing your SEO strategies can only strengthen your arts organization's brand and reach to grow not only potential new audiences, but also viable new revenue streams.
With that in mind, here are 8 basic SEO tips that could give your arts organization a search engine boost!
#1: Optimize your website for user experience
If you want your website to rise to the top of the pack, you need to make sure that it loads quickly and is easy to navigate.
According to Search Engine Journal, a page should load in three seconds (or less!) to be considered fully optimized.
Three seconds? Yikes!
According to Quick Sprout, five to six seconds is considered the average page loading time for Media and Entertainment. Get in that vicinity, and you’ll likely have less drop-off.
If you're a small company without a webmaster, there are still things you can do to optimize your website's page load speed.
Use tools like Google PageSpeed or SEO Site Checkup to get some (free!) quick and useful data to see where you may need to make improvements.
And if your arts organization is not yet using Google Console, install that ASAP! It's a must. Google Console is a free tool that covers all kinds of analysis for your website.
Also, check out this article from Content Marketing Institute, which includes a bunch of additional suggestions.
#2: Be sure your website is mobile-friendly
58 percent of searches are now done on mobile.
And data shows this is likely going to increase.
This shouldn’t come as a surprise, especially with more people now working remotely and on the go.
So make sure your arts organization’s website is optimized for mobile. Run it through Google's Mobile-Friendly Test for a fast check.
#3: Get up to speed on searcher intent
Now that arts organizations are digitally connected to new audiences, it would be a good idea to find out what kind of entertainment these audiences are seeking.
Perhaps your arts organization is looking to become better aligned with your target audience's needs. Is there room in your mission for your organization to expand artistically, if needed, to serve these new digital audiences? Does your digital audience want more access to online arts education programming or special events?
Understanding searcher intent will help you and your organization make more informed, strategic decisions.
As a start, simply type queries into Google to see what your target audiences are searching for in relation to online programming. Also, pay attention to similar queries to yours and the pages that come up in the results.
Look at these areas on the first search engine results page:
Ask yourself these questions when reviewing the results:
Become acquainted with some SEO tools for better analysis
Taking a little time out every day or every week for some basic SEO investigation and analysis will empower you and your organization.
There is an overwhelming number of free and paid tools out there to help you. The free tools I list below are a place to start.
Used in combination, these tools and extensions can help provide some insights:
If you find you need better data than the free tools can provide, then a company like SEMRush or Ahrefs may be the way to go if you have the means in your budget.
#4: Keep your blog active with useful and quality content
When was the last time you posted to your blog? Was it a year ago? Try to establish a practice of keeping your blog more current and consistent.
Or, wait, your organization doesn't have a blog? Well, you really ought to consider starting one!
Having a blog is a way to:
The writing should be engaging and easy to read, show your organization’s unique personality or tone, and include a call to action.
These tactics will keep readers on your blog page longer, which, in turn, could help the search ranking and authority of your arts organization.
#5: Focus on video
YouTube is the second most-used search engine on the planet, so it would be a good idea for your arts organization to create a YouTube channel if you haven’t already.
YouTube is a great platform to publish your arts organization's original content, but also your repurposed content. For instance, if you already have a podcast, you can upload your episodes in full or smaller sections to YouTube via your podcast hosting provider.
If you can publish great content with consistency, YouTube is a smart way to expand your reach to new audiences.
If finding time to manage the platform is too much, be sure you have videos of your best content on your website. Make sure that audiences can find them and engage with them easily. You want viewers to share and link to these videos on social.
#6: Image optimization
Chances are you are already using relevant images for your site. There should be at least one featured image related to your posts or articles. And make sure they are optimized:
#7: Optimize for voice search
“Hey, Alexa!” “Hey, Google!” Hey, Siri!”
It’s estimated that 39 million smart speakers were shipped in 2020.
OK, I think we hear you loud and clear -- voice search is becoming a thing.
Voice search is used primarily for local searches, such as when people are looking for nearby Chinese restaurants or the closest florist. But that doesn’t mean your arts organization shouldn’t optimize for voice search, especially if you’re looking to build younger audiences.
So, learn the kinds of questions people are posing to their devices about your organization or related queries and use that information to optimize your FAQ page, for instance, or other applicable pages on your site.
ROBIN'S NEWS & VIEWS!
Recent news and latest updates on my writing and artistic projects. Also check back here for occasional tips and observations on creative writing and theater!
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