WERA

Arlington Independent Media

Volunteer Networking: Finding Projects and Learning Tips

WERA - Community

Guest - Lynn Borton
The monthly volunteer networking events are promoted as a great way for AIM and WERA members to meet and connect skills and interests—but the “pro tips” alone are worth coming for.

AIM’s content coordinator Patrick McCleary organizes the events and recruits producers from both TV and radio to talk about their work while allowing everyone to meet, compare notes, and find areas of common interest. The events launched in October with Michael Shea (producer of TV shows “In Case You Missed It,” “Policy Matters,” “The Laugh Track,” and more!) sharing lessons learned on the video side. The November event featured Brian Nelson-Palmer, producer and host of WERA’s “DC Music Rocks.”

Among Brian’s many tips:
  • Promote your program with T-shirts and other branded goods using online services that handle printing and shipping, without you having to commit to inventory. Brian uses merch.Amazon.com (https://merch.amazon.com/landing, currently only accepting new clients through an application process). Another option is CafePress (http://www.cafepress.com/cp/shopkeepers/index.aspx?page=make-money).
  • Turn your radio show into a podcast to build audience and extend your reach. Brain writes his scripts so that he can trim “the radio stuff” and post only the core of his radio show as the podcast. He’s got 2,100 subscribers!
  • Debrief with guests. Brian asks all of his guests three questions after each show: (1) Was there anything I did that you think I should change? (2) What can I do better? (3) Can you suggest other artists to come on the show—and would you be willing to make an introduction?
  • Reduce the administrative burdens of producing a show by outsourcing administrative tasks to volunteers or interns or via online outsourcing sites such as upwork.com (https://www.upwork.com).
Watch for notices of future events. Hope to see you there!

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