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Thoughts on graduation

This blog was posted by Alice Holland on February 26, 2016 as part of the CultureHive Digital Marketing Academy. You can find out more about the project here.

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Trish and I have really benefited from putting aside the time to properly consider our marketing activities and aims through the DMA. This came at a pivotal time for Disability Arts Online as we began Viewfinder, our largest and most ambitious project to date.

The generosity and expertise of our Mentor Tom Beardshaw, and from Carol Jones and our Action Learning Set peers, has been informative, exciting and ultimately useful to us. In particular Tom’s work with us has been fantastic and extremely detailed. Tom’s friendly and genuinely interested manner has made the experience a real treat, and we would highly recommend working with him, both for his impeccable knowledge of Facebook marketing in particular, and for his enthusiastic teaching style.

We found ourselves to be immediately comfortable with much of the Agile planning ethos; we already apply many of the principles due to the ever-changing nature of running a website and project-based activities. Participating in the DMA alongside the start of our Viewfinder project has proved fruitful, but we are now questioning how to market the ‘non-launch’ of Viewfinder.

Incrementally releasing new elements makes sense to us in terms of testing new formats online, but it has made us think about how to grow an audience without the special occasion of a big launch; we are motivated by a big ta-da, and do find deadlines to be similarly inspiring so we are currently discussing a middle ground option for this.

The DMA process has prompted an increased appreciation for the input and expertise we share with our web developers Surface Impression, and we are considering a more formalised ongoing experimental ethos with them as part of our core practice. This is in part inspired by Tom’s advice on Facebook advert experiments and the confidence he gave us to take risks with our social media output within the context of a limited budget. From an Agile planning perspective, this on-going incremental process will allow us the flexibility and low-pressure environment required for detailed analysis and adjustment to output.

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