Wednesday Session Number Two: Meeting with Mentors and Marketing with Jonathan Harper

This week, we dived straight into our second Wednesday night session and all had meetings with our mentors. The Future Producers team have split into three groups to work on each of our live briefs. These are:

  1. 24 and under ticket offer in response to a collaborative research project with Culture24
  2. LOVE Tea Dance with a Difference, as part of Bristol Family Arts Festival
  3. A series of late night screening inspired by the BFI LOVE season

Each group are closely mentored by Watershed staff, whose experience and skills align with the aims and objectives of each brief. I’m in the Family Arts Festival group, and we are producing an interactive day of games, activities, a dance and tea party that is themed around a film which will be screened throughout the October half term. Hannah Brady, Engagement Producer and Roseanna Dias, Editorial Assistant and Family Engagement Coordinator are our mentors. Our help, however, is not only limited to our group mentors, all mentors and Watershed staff are happy and willing to chip in and contribute ideas and advice wherever possible. We sat down with Verity McIntosh, the producer of the Pervasive Media Studio and talked about all of the exciting projects that we may be able to incorporate in our event.

The Pervasive Media studio is a fascinating place, where a multitude of talented people explore experience design and creative technology to produce all things weird and wonderful! One of the things our group is most excited about is working with artists/technologists/ academics from PM Studio and creating activities for our event that will delight and surprise its audience!

After another lovely sharing dinner, we had a talk and workshop with Jonathan Harper, the Managing Director of Exit through the Gift Shop and Executive Producer for No Boundaries. Working in the Arts, culture and music industry for over 15 years, Jonathan supports a wide range of UK organisations to plan and implement marketing strategies and to develop management teams with a view to increasing audience and income.

Jonathan was very down to earth and it was really great to hear about all his different experience, and about how Marketing as a profession has changed so much over the years. He talked about both creative and scientific marketing, how press and PR can contribute to the event, and talked us through his seven main focus points when marketing an event. We shared questions and ideas, and certainly finished the evening feeling a lot more confident about our events.