For many architects, January is the slow month. Down Under it’s time to hit the beach and hit the refresh button. But it’s also a time for New Year’s resolutions and to start thinking about those higher level ideas, the vision that takes us forward into the next year.
For Nic and me, it’s a time to review where BowerBird is headed, and to dream up new and better tools for Architects and Designers to connect with journalists in meaningful ways.
But we think it’s also a great opportunity to reflect on some learnings from last year, and help you to develop some New Year’s resolutions to help you get published in 2017. Begin as you mean to go on…
So here are our top five:
1. Tell better stories (simply)
Telling stories is simple, and it’s crucial to communication. Learning how to tell your stories will help you in all aspects of your business, from talking to clients, to presenting to awards and communicating internally. If you can tell a good story, people will better understand your ideas and your philosophy.
In 2016, we gave you some simple tools for telling the stories of your projects. Why not put them into practice by writing the Brief, Challenges and Solutions from your recent project—go on, see how easy it is to uncover the story.
2. Enter Awards
Now, we’ve been hearing some reports of what they’re calling ‘Awards fatigue’. Let’s face it, there are a lot of awards programs out there. But there is some real value in entering awards, such as:
i) Exposure—awards programs usually have a system and staff that help to promote your work. By entering, even if you don’t win, you put yourself into a system that aims to help you get exposure. Find the programs that provide the most support and media coverage if you’re looking to get more exposure.
ii) Purpose—entering awards helps you to clarify what your practice is about. There will usually be in-depth questions about your work and who you are (and what makes you different). Entering awards forces you to address and understand key things about your practice and can inform future planning.
iii) Presentation—they are also another fantastic excuse to tell the stories of your projects. Sometimes this will be through a paper/digital entry, but many awards also give you the opportunity to present in-person. By using simple storytelling, you get invaluable experience in communicating your story and your ideas. Overcoming a fear of public speaking can pay huge dividends for your practice.
If you’ve never entered an award, do it this year.
3. Create a Media Kit
Okay, so we’ve got a bit of a vested interest in this, but creating a package of content for each of your projects is just so valuable. You can use a tool like BowerBird, or you can create a simple word doc or PDF. Even if you don’t proactively seek out journalists (but why wouldn’t you?), if someone knocks on your door, you’ll have everything they need to publish a story.
Why not fill out our very simple media kit form here using your latest project, and we can review your content for you, no obligation…
4. Contact 10 new journalists
Making contact with journalists—whether through social media, LinkedIn or BowerBird—is crucial to getting published. Once you’ve made contact, you’re on their radar, and you might even find they start coming to you for new stories.
Starting today, go and follow/hunt down 10 new journalists. You can even use BowerBird to find and follow architecture and design journalists for free. Do it here.
5. Sign up to BowerBird
Okay, so this one sounds like it’s all about us, but there’s actually a lot to be gained from the Free Plan on BowerBird. You can create draft BowerKits which journalists can find and follow, you can connect with journalists—a sort of ‘hi I’m here’—and you can discover a whole world of design publications.
There’s no catch, all that is free, and it gets you in the game, and in front of people who want to help tell your story. So jump on, it’s 2017, the year of the BowerBird.
We want to thank all our followers, subscribers and supporters for the most fantastic 2016. We can’t wait to help you all grow your practices, tell your stories and do amazing creative things in 2017!