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Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Feature: Digital Drama Queen, Part IV home page

Tool Time - Using For Online Promotion
by Liesl Barrell

Hot off the success of my Montreal Girl Geek talkwhere about 50 of us gathered at Twist Image to drink beer and build websites, this month I thought it was about time I profile one of my favourite tools of the interwebs,

IN A NUTSHELL (née flavors, but I forgive them so you should, too) is a sleek and simple aggregator that pulls in feeds from over 30 online services (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, Etsy and many more...) You can play for free and link up to four services to your profile, or for less than two movie tickets ($20/year) you can subscribe to the full version for additional features and to use your own domain. 

Why do I like it? Because it’s easy, flexible and requires very little commitment: the cornerstones of internet goodness. Just how flexible? Read on for some ideas on using to promote yourself, a show or your company.

I often recommend this free-to-cheap and user-friendly solution to busy theatre artists who tell me they “need a website.” Many of them don’t have the time between multiple jobs and shows to spend much TLC time on a full-featured personal site or blog, so it can fall out of date and becomes a hassle to keep going or redesign. 

Often what they actually need is a URL they can promote, and a simple way to tie bring all their digital accounts together in one place. So if you:
  • Don’t need tons of features
  • Don’t want to spend much to have a home online
  • Like the idea of 98% dynamic content
...then may be the perfect solution for you. That gorgeous new headshot makes the perfect backdrop for all your feeds, and keeps up with you as you throw your demo reel up on YouTube, tweet away or update your CV on LinkedIn. Even if you already have a site, this makes a great complement as a simple landing page or online business card.

Check out a few examples of flavours personal branding:
Chris Fore (Actor)
Kitty Taube (Costume Designer)
Peter Warren (Playwright/Screenwriter)

In addition to being a streamlined option for personal branding, is a simple and effective tool to promote a show, project or cause. It takes so little time to set it all up with a dedicated domain, and when it’s all over you can either dismantle it or leave it up to preserve SEO. 

For the duration of the project, you could:
  • Pull in all your cast and crew blog or Twitter feeds together in one place.
  • Throw up rehearsal videos on YouTube or pics on Flickr to pull in.
  • Connect with a normally private Facebook account or Page for a read-only version of your wall while your show is running.

...Any other ideas? Add them in the comments below!

Voilà two examples of flavours project sites:

My Lithium & Me (Music - 6 neat trip-hoppy covers of David Bowie songs) 
Terrebonne (Film)

Similar to personal or project uses, is a lightweight solution for giving your theatre company an online presence without requiring the time or resources to maintain a full-featured site. Since you can set things up in less time than it takes to read this blog post, it also makes a great interim solution while you’re shopping for something more robust. 
Here are a few flavours company sites:

Whac Media (Audio & Multimedia)
Beyond The Pale (Theatre Company)

Still looking for inspiration? Check out their directory (photo, left) for ideas from hundreds of users. Then set yourself up with a free account to get playing! Add your link to the comments so we can check out your work!

And if this kinda thing is right up your alley, check out Goodsie, their sister product for selling stuff, or flavours rival

Liesl is an account manager at Twist Image, a leading digital marketing agency ranked among the top 10 in Canada for the second year running by Marketing Magazine. You can read more about her and the things she cares about on her blog at

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