Top 10 Viral Videos

Viral video marketing basically puts the hard work of promotion into the hands of your audience, web visitors and social networking friends and followers. It’s revolutionising the way large businesses are able to market themselves, engage their customers in a fun and exciting way, and communicate important messages.

The beauty of viral is that it could reach anyone, anywhere, at anytime. You just don’t know you might end up watching your viral video just because it made their friend laugh.

Goviral, a video content distributor published their list of top 10 viral videos for June 2010. Watch them below and let me know what you think.

Adidas – ‘Star Wars’ Cantina 2010

Volkswagen – ‘The Slide (Driven by Fun)

Head – ‘Andy Murray Street Magic in London’

Iceland – ‘Visit Iceland’

Coca-Cola Zero & Mentos – ‘The Coke Zero & Mentos Rocket Car

Orbit Gum – ‘The Prom Date’

McDonald’s & Coca-Cola – ‘T-Shirt Wars 2’

GMC – ‘Dude Perfect: The Cliff Jump Shot’

Sapporo – ‘Legendary Biru’

Lynx Rise – ‘Jessica Jane Clement – Her Best Bits’


A World of Opportunity

There are a wide range of support mechanisms out there in the funding world, including grants, loans, investments, award schemes and many more to suit your organisation, group or project. While governmental bodies sort out how and where their public funding cuts will take place, we are actively sourcing and investigating alternative funding streams such as the Big Lottery Fund and trusts and foundations providing grants for cultural projects.

Below is a snapshot of some of the funding opportunities that are available for the cultural sector that may benefit your project or give you some inspiration for a future project.

The Big Lottery Fund – Investing in Communities

Area: Scotland

Application open/close dates: 30 June 2010 – 30 June 2015

Min/Max – £10,000 – £1 million

Investing in Communities focus on three investment areas:

  • Growing Community Assets – aims to help communities take more control and have more influence over their own future through ownership of assets.
  • Life Transitions – aims to support projects that help people at key times of change, helping them to make their lives better for the future.
  • Supporting 21st Century Life – aims to support projects that build stronger families and stronger communities.

The fund seeks to fund projects which will bring about lasting change, with equalities, environment and empowerment at the heart of the projects they will support.

Please click on this link to view the full guidance notes for the fund.

Awards for All Scotland

Area: Scotland

Min/Max – £500 – £10,000

Awards for All Scotland aims to help people become more actively involved in projects that make a positive difference to their local communities. They aim to fund projects that meet one or more of the following outcomes:

  • People have better chances in life – i.e. trying out new activities, volunteering, learning new skills or playing a more active role in their community.
  • Communities are safer, stronger and more able to work together to tackle inequalities – i.e. by enabling different communities or younger and older people to tackle common issues together.
  • People have better and more sustainable services and environments – i.e. by improving community spaces or increasing recycling.
  • People and communities are healthier – i.e. by enabling more people to take part in activities that improve their health and well being.

For more information and guidance please click on this link for the full Awards for All Scotland Guide.

Trusts and Foundations

Below are just a snapshot of the trusts and foundations that fund arts and culture.

Esmee Fairbairn Foundation– The foundation aims to improve the quality of life throughout the UK. Their primary interests are in the cultural life of the UK, education and learning, the natural environment and enabling disadvantaged people to participate more fully in society.

Clore Duffield Foundation– A grant-making organisation that concentrates its support on education, the arts, museum and gallery education, cultural leadership training, health and social care.

Foyle Foundation– Is an independent grantmaking trust that distributes grants to UK charities. The Main Grants Scheme for the Arts supports applications with a strong artistic case for support in either the performing or visual arts. The Arts Programme aims to help sustain the arts and to support projects that particularly help to deliver artistic vision.

The Macrobert Trust– The trust was established by Lady MacRobert during World War II. The Trust’s categories of interest include: science and technology, youth, services and sea, education, disabled and handicapped, community welfare, and their minor categories include agriculture and horticulture, arts and music, and medical care. The MacRobert Trust gives preference to organisations based in Scotland. 

The Robertson Trust– An independent Scottish grant-making Trust, this exists to provide financial support to charities in Scotland. Their four main priority areas are care, health, education and training, community art and sport.

Other Support

Scottish Community Foundation Grants 

The Scottish Community Foundation aims to improve the quality of life and chances for the people of Scotland. Their work covers a wide range of social welfare and community development activities through a number of different grant programmes.

The two grant programmes open to groups throughout Scotland are:

  • Community Grants – grants of up to £5,000
  • Woman’s Fund for Scotland – grants of up to £5,000.

Community Grants are one off grants directed at locally based work carried out, and often initiated by, members of that local community.

Please click on the following link for more information about the Scottish Community Foundation and the grant making programming.

In-Kind Advertsing for non-profit organisastions from Google

Google Grants offers an in-kind donation programme awarding free AdWords advertsing to select charitable organisations. Google supports organisations sharing their philosophy of community service to help the world in areas such as science and technology, education, global public health, the environment, youth advocacy and the arts.

The Conundrum of the Workshops

When the flush of a new-born sun fell first on Eden’s green and gold,
Our father Adam sat under the Tree and scratched with a stick in the mould;
And the first rude sketch that the world had seen was joy to his mighty heart,
Till the Devil whispered behind the leaves, “It’s pretty, but is it Art ?”

Wherefore he called to his wife, and fled to fashion his work anew –
The first of his race who cared a fig for the first, most dread review;
And he left his lore to the use of his sons — and that was a glorious gain
When the Devil chuckled “Is it Art ?” in the ear of the branded Cain.

They fought and they talked in the North and the South, they talked and
they fought in the West,
Till the waters rose on the pitiful land, and the poor Red Clay had rest –
Had rest till that dank blank-canvas dawn when the dove was preened to start,
And the Devil bubbled below the keel: “It’s human, but is it Art ?”

They builded a tower to shiver the sky and wrench the stars apart,
Till the Devil grunted behind the bricks: “It’s striking, but is it Art ?”
The stone was dropped at the quarry-side and the idle derrick swung,
While each man talked of the aims of Art, and each in an alien tongue.

The tale is as old as the Eden Tree – and new as the new-cut tooth –
For each man knows ere his lip-thatch grows he is master of Art and Truth;
And each man hears as the twilight nears, to the beat of his dying heart,
The Devil drum on the darkened pane: “You did it, but was it Art ?”

We have learned to whittle the Eden Tree to the shape of a surplice-peg,
We have learned to bottle our parents twain in the yolk of an addled egg,
We know that the tail must wag the dog, for the horse is drawn by the cart;
But the Devil whoops, as he whooped of old: “It’s clever, but is it Art ?”

When the flicker of London sun falls faint on the Club-room’s green and gold,
The sons of Adam sit them down and scratch with their pens in the mould –
They scratch with their pens in the mould of their graves, and the ink and the anguish start,
For the Devil mutters behind the leaves: “It’s pretty, but is it Art ?”

Now, if we could win to the Eden Tree where the Four Great Rivers flow,
And the Wreath of Eve is red on the turf as she left it long ago,
And if we could come when the sentry slept and softly scurry through,
By the favour of God we might know as much – as our father Adam knew!

Rudyard Kipling — 1890

How to Use Twitter

To follow on from ‘How to Use Facebook’ check out these excellent videos for using Twitter.

Twitter in Plain English

Getting Started with Twitter

Twitter Lists in a Nutshell

Twitter Tools Explained

How to Create an Attractive Profile

Finding Followers

How to Tweet from your Phone

How to use Twitter for your Business

How to Use Facebook

I think that most of us now recognise the value of being on a social network like facebook. The interaction with audiences or customers, the instant feedback, the ability to promote events or activities to your core supporters, and having a more ‘social’ side to your organisation has opened up a whole new dimension of being able to promote what you do, while engaging your audiences on a whole new level.

But that doesn’t mean that we all instantly know how to use facebook. So I’ve scoured the medium of You Tube to find some good examples of facebook tutorials. If you find these useful, or not at all, do let me know. I’d like to produce our own set of online video tutorials, but if these do the job already then do let me know!

How to Register and Join Facebook

Singing Up and Explore the Home Page

Facebook Basics: How to Use Facebook

How to Find, Invite and Add Friends on Facebook

Create a Page on Facebook

How to use Facebook Events to Promote Your Business (Part 1 of 2)

How to use Facebook Events to Promote Your Business (Part 2 of 2)

Facebook Privacy

Click Through to Facebook to See there Video on Using Facebook Privacy Settings.

The Source Project

The Source

The Source


The Source Project Team would like to invite you to join them at one of three upcoming forums taking place in Glasgow, Perth and Edinburgh. The Source project is now is in its 2nd year, working with 42 arts organisations across Scotland. The Source is a collaborative project between the Federation of Scottish Theatre, Culture Sparks and The Audience Business. Since its inception, the project has provided participating organisations with audience data reports, training and development. 

The Source works closely with Experian to deliver Mosaic Scotland audience data analysis to arts organisations participating in the project. At the upcoming forums, Experian will discuss ways in which other sectors have used Mosaic profiling to their benefit – so that we in the arts and cultural sector can benefit from their knowledge! The forums are open to anyone operating in the arts and cultural sector in Scotland, not just those involved in the Source project. 

In addition, the Source project team will present the Scottish arts attendance benchmark to date, so you as a practitioner can gain valuable insight and intelligence about arts attenders both nationally and regionally. 

DATES FOR THE DIARY: The Source Forums, July/Aug ’10, RSVP
West:     27th July ’10      Venue TBC, Glasgow, 10:30am – 12:30pm 

North:     28th July ’10      Horsecross Arts, Perth, 2 – 4pm 

East:      24th Aug ’10      Venue TBC, Edinburgh, 10am – 12noon 

Please RSVP with your choice of forum to Nina Honeyman 


Look forward to seeing you there! Best wishes, The Source Project Team 

Engaging Young People in Culture

The perceived dangers of the outside world and the increased popularity of media use at home have curtailed levels of activity outside of the home. By understanding the barriers and motivations to attendance and participation hopefully you can persuade the young people in your area away from the computer and TV towards engaging and participating in your activities and events.   

Back in August 2009 the Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCFS) conducted and published a research report on attitudinal barriers to encouraging young people in ‘Positive Activities’ in the volunteering, sports and leisure sectors (which includes Arts and Culture). The report drew on existing research, academic journals and direct surveys and analysis conducted by a number of different charitable and governmental agencies across the UK.

The research and findings provide an excellent insight into the barriers, perceived and real, that youths face to engaging in ‘Positive Activities’ which would include arts and cultural activities and events. It also outlines some key recommendations on how to effectively use your marketing to communicate with this potential audience group.  

The full report can be downloaded and read by visiting the DCSF website, I have also summarised the most important aspects and conclusions of the report and the practical advice given in relation to these conclusions, which can be downloaded from the HI-Arts website.  

Below I have outlined the points that the report covers. 

Barriers to Participation  


 Physical Barriers

  • The perception that positive activities are time consuming.
  • The lack of cheap transport particularly for those living in rural areas and young disabled people.
  • Quality of facilities and buildings.
  • Timing of activities is a major barrier.

What often seems to be physical barrier is actually an attitudinal or perceptual barrier. The important message is that whether these barriers are real or just perceived that an efficient communication campaign should reassure young people that their fears and concerns are sometimes unjustified.  

Attitudinal Barriers – Internal and External Barriers   

 Even when an area provides good quality, reachable and affordable activities, some young people will still refrain from taking part in any activity, there are other restraints which hold people back that can’t be addressed only by removing the physical barriers.  

Attitudinal barriers can be divided into 2 groups – Internal barriers (those which manifest from the individual) and External barriers (the influence of opinions held by influential figures in a young persons life). These barriers include:  

  •  There is a general feeling among young people is that there is simply not enough to do.
  • Confidence and a fear of rejection are hugely influential in determining participation.
  • The values and priorities held by young people.
  • The role of external figures (parents, friends, role models, teachers and schools) in the lives of young people.
  • Accessing cultural activities or events depends a lot on the individual or team delivering the activity.
  • Negative peer pressure and the ‘not-for-me’ attitude is often shaped by external factors and reinforced by peer relations.  
Word of Mouth
Word of Mouth

  Marketing Your Message  

It is important to develop a succession of messages aimed at involving young people, to be followed by other messages to make sure that your new audience remains engaged. Highlighting the immediate short term benefits will initially will grab their attention, and once they are involved in an activity or event, further motivation can be given by providing opportunities to engage in other activities or events.   

Developing your Communication Strategy – You are going to be communicating a different message to young people under the age of 10 years (in fact you’ll be communicating to their parents) then you will communicate your message to teenagers. You can’t treat young people as a single audience; rather they are a number of separate audiences with different needs, interests and desires.  

Developing Your Message – It is more effective to focus your message on the experience on offer to the young person, rather than highlighting your core message or vision. You should try to combine all the different attractions for young people; having fun, making friends, doing something interesting and exciting, something different, unique and funky.  

Slogans can be a powerful way of communicating your message and be easily remembered, it has the added benefit of creating a recognisable brand. Involving young people in the creation of a slogan or brand is a really effective way of creating a message perceived by young people as authentic and powerful.  

Language and Tone – Keep the message simple. The more information an advertisement tries to communicate the less it is likely to succeed, particularly among young people who tend to have shorter attention spans. A motivating message can be buried under other information that could be communicated at a later stage. Websites enable you to communicate as much information as you like at a later stage.  

It’s important that you are careful not to appear condescending in the use of language styles. Attempts to make a message seem ‘cool’ can be counter productive, try to avoid appearing patronising or to be talking down to young people.  

Using words which entail young people’s empowerment and respect for their views, such as ‘it’s your choice’, ‘it’s up to you’, ‘you decide’, can have a strong and positive effect. Other words that make participation more attractive for young people are; fun, make friends, meet people, help, challenging, competitions, cool, enjoy, exciting, experience, free, funky, interesting, reward, skills.  

Media – Once you have defined and refined your message or messages it is important to choose which medium or combination of media to use to communicate this to your target audience. Young people’s interests change frequently, therefore it is important to regularly update your message and the medium you choose to market that message.  

Some of the key media platforms recommended are:  

  • Magazines
  • Social Networking websites (facebook, twitter, bebo)
  • Blogs
  • Radio – local and national
  • Text Messages
  • Viral Marketing (any activity which encourages people to pass on a marketing message to others through the web).
  • Websites
  • And of course Face-to-Face marketing. 

Creativity – Most obvious, but most importantly, don’t forget to be creative when engaging young people. If you’re trying to engage people in the Arts and Cultural sector, then play to your strengths, and that is your creativity. Consider offering something extra to promote your events and activities, young people appreciate items they can take away and use, pencils, stickers, stamps, wristbands, temporary tattoos. While flyers and posters are important in communicating information, this can be done through your website too, a gimmick or gadget will spark a young person’s interest and attention, and give them a sense of ownership, and is far more effectively then a flyer or poster.  

You can read my abridged version on the HI-Arts website,  


You can read the full report from the DCFS here.

This is it. This is Craft.

Made It! Exhibition 2010

Made It! Exhibition 2010

 Intellectual, physical, unique, challenging, beautiful, useful, tactile, extraordinary, cutting-edge, innovative, aesthetic, visual, thought-provoking, handmade, multi-disciplined, cultural, designed, artefacts, visual, sensitive…is this contemporary craft?

In recent years contemporary craft makers have been challenging our perceptions of what craft is, pushing the boundaries of traditional craftsmanship and emerging to represent a new, innovative and exciting art form. Jenny Deschenes, Laura West, Lucy Woodley and Daniel Kavanagh, four makers from across the Highlands and Islands, demonstrate in their joint exhibition Made It! the ingenuity, passion and creativity that contemporary craft is today.

The Highlands and Islands have long been a natural home for craft, its inspiring landscapes, rich mythology and wealth of natural materials, have contributed to the rise in interest and desire to understand, see and own Scottish craft, from both the traditional and contemporary sides of the spectrum. Craft is an integral part of the economic, social and cultural life of the Highlands and Islands, and its diversity combined with the increasing professionalism of the sector has opened up greater opportunities for growth, both for makers and for craft audiences. 

In order to sustain, grow and advance such a culturally rich and engaging art form, contemporary craft has been the focus of a number of initiatives set up and delivered by the HI-Arts Craft Development team. To support the emerging professional contemporary crafts makers in the Highlands and Islands HI-Arts launched the Making Progress programme back in November 2009. The mentoring and business support scheme was designed to support mid-career makers, demonstrating exceptional potential in their chosen field, and enable them to develop new work, be supported by talented and established Highland makers through mentorship, to exhibit their work, and develop their understanding of curating, marketing and management. 

Ceramics, textiles, wood and jewellery are the dominant disciplines for the Scottish craft scene; however the four makers selected for the Making Progress programme represent the diversity of contemporary craft today.

Jenny Deschenes A Chair

Made It! Jenny Deschenes

 Drawing together vintage fabrics with textile design, Jenny Deschenes’ work highlights how a maker can bring the old and the modern together with style and exciting flair. “I am interested in the intimacy of old fabric, to keep the character of old cloth but yet to infuse it with a new modernity and style.”

Laura West has reinvented the way bookbinding can be infused with art and craft. West has created her own signature range of unique artefact books which take inspiration from historical and multi-cultural book structures, “they are unique and contemporary artefacts meant to inspire the user and enhance them or their surroundings.”  

Daniel Kavanagh works with fine art ceramics which demonstrate both a classical and contemporary style, and is developing a fusion of bronze and ceramics to create unique and inspirational sculptural forms. 

Working from her studio in Tain, Lucy Woodley takes inspiration from her local environment, the sea and its many creatures finding itself as Woodley’s muse. Woodley’s jewellery brings together silver, gold, slate and sandblasted glass to create the sense of the flotsam and jetsam of the ocean. 

Made It! Spotlight Show Laura West

Made It! Spotlight Show Laura West

I was able to catch up with two of the Maker’s; Daniel Kavanagh and Laura West, to talk about their experience of the Mentoring Programme. The programme was designed to give these maker’s the freedom and support to explore their full potential, as West explains; “the mentoring process was like being given ‘permission’ to explore new materials and ways of working in order to come up with a whole new collection of work”. 

As maker’s based and working in the more remote and rural areas of Scotland it was important that through the mentoring programme there was a greater sense of community around their own artistic craftsmanship. Kavanagh felt he had really benefited from the experience as the “opportunity to be part of a collective group of makers has been a new experience … and one that has provided a lot of insight and reflection, just being able to share ideas about your work and the practical parts of exhibiting and applying to shows as well as the more humanistic opportunity to talk about the stresses and positives that being a maker can present has provided support and guidance that has allowed me to feel less isolated and more informed”. 

Made It! Mentors and Mentees

Made It! Mentors and Mentees

If anything the mentorship programme not only enabled these maker’s the time and space to focus on their craft and develop beyond their comfort zones, but gave them the confidence to face the future as a professional craft maker. “I feel excited by the future and what I have learnt on the programme and believe that this is a valuable experience for any maker at any stage of their career, it is easy to get bogged down by the day-to-day commitments and to have an opportunity to work in a structured way has allowed me to view both my work and my development in a new light”, Kavanagh explains. West echo’s this sentiment, admitting that the pieces she created for her Spotlight show “opened up a whole new range of possibilities in my work…No binder that I know of has attempted to move into the world of fashion in the way that I am attempting”. 

But the experience also had a profound affect on the mentors involved; Gilly Langton and Eileen Gatt. Gatt worked with Jenny Desenches and Lucy Woodley who felt the mentoring programme ‘has been a very rewarding experience, seeing [Lucy and Jenny] develop and become clearer about their career path. The mentoring process has been a very positive experience for everyone involved and it has proven to be a two way process, as I have gained a lot in terms of networking opportunities and the exchange of ideas and contacts has been valuable”. 

The theme of the exchange of ideas is a prevalent one across the Made It! Exhibition, with works on display, courtesy of the Craft Council, from notable maker’s such as Rupert Spira and Tord Boontje, the four maker’s were able to draw on collection items which have inspired their own practice, to exhibit alongside their work. 

Immersive Recordings

Immersive Recordings

Another exchange of ideas culminates in what might be perceived to be a video installation, but on closer inspection are videos of each of the maker’s and their mentors working from their own studios on their craft. HI-Arts partnered with Distance Lab to create these immersive and extraordinary insights into the world of the craft maker. Distance lab is a creative research institute bringing together digital media technology, design and the arts to redefine and overcome the issues and problems of distance. This collaboration required each maker to wear immersive recording devices (HD bullet cameras) around their chests, to have the freedom to move around and work in their studios. The overall effect is one of feeling very much a part of the craft and artistic work which you are viewing, rather than simply being a passive viewer. These recordings bring a totally unique and innovative insight into the world of the maker, their talent, skills and creativity, enabling you to appreciate the incredible works on display. 

The Made It! exhibition is a showcase of  four talented Highland and Island makers and works which have inspired their craft and runs until the of July 2010 at the Inverness Museum and Art Gallery.

The Lay of the Cultural Land



A huge thank you to all the wonderful people who took part in the first HI-Arts Audience Development Survey last month!

I have now finished the analysis and report, which you can download from the HI-Arts Research web pages.

Here is a quick overview of the survey findings.

  • 51 different arts and cultural enterprises completed the survey.
  • Of these 32% were individual artists or practitioners, 21% were voluntary or community groups, 20% were art centres or a venue, 13% were promoters, 6% were touring or theatre companies, 8% marked themselves as ‘other’.
  • All the art forms were represented in the survey (music, craft, visual arts, theatre, film, writing, dance, heritage, and museums).
  • All the areas across the Highlands and Islands were represented in the survey.


  • All enterprises engaged with a variety of small, medium and large audience bases (from less then 500 a year to more then 15,000 a year).
  • The key audience base for these enterprises were adults aged 31 to 59 years, the tourism market, families, other artists and those in the Arts Sector.
  • The majority of enterprises said their core audiences were mainly local residents.
  • Only 22% of respondents admitted to having a ‘living’ marketing strategy.
  • The most popular marketing and promotion tools were websites, posters and flyers, print brochures and leaflets, and email campaigns.
  • Only 24% of respondents have Access Policies, although 17% admitted they ‘were working on it’.
  • Accessible websites were the most popular accessible resources provided to disabled audiences by both ticketed and non-ticketed events and sellers.


The Survey will remain open until the end of July and I will be developing a new audience development survey for the autumn.

If you have any thoughts or questions about this survey, future surveys or about developing your own surveys please do get in touch.