movmnt magazine’s Blogger Get-Together

Last night I attended a blogger get-together hosted by movmnt magazine, a quarterly dance, fashion, music, and pop culture publication that just published its spring 2008 issue. Journalist David Benaym, the magazine’s editor in chief and publisher, invited dance bloggers to the magazine’s headquarters, where he and other magazine staff joined us in a two-hour round-table discussion that covered myriad dance-related topics. Several dance bloggers attended, including Taylor, Tony, and Brian (all from the Winger), Tonya, and Doug. Everyone had something thought-provoking to contribute to the conversation, which started with some discussion about blogging personalities versus real-life personalities. It’s interesting to interact with dance bloggers in person, since we primarily “see” each other online and interact via blog commenting. Clearly there’s a different dynamic when a bunch of bloggers are sitting around a table in an office!

The discussion quickly turned to how companies are (or aren’t) reaching out to bloggers and the internet for publicity, and how bloggers can (and should) reach out to companies. The consensus seemed to be that bloggers have to make the effort, especially with larger companies, since they are unlikely to make contact with dance bloggers. The reason for this, in part, is that companies are used to contacting mainstream critics from newspapers and magazines, and are unaware of the thriving dance blogosphere. If only they knew and understood that bloggers have the potential to reach many more viewers/readers than a newspaper or magazine review. Companies could be much more effective in their outreach, particularly with younger audiences, if they utilized more online marketing and communications. As someone mentioned in the discussion, Kristin Sloan’s videos that documented the making of New York City Ballet’s premiere of Romeo and Juliet were a huge success. And David noted that Cedar Lake’s recent performances sold out after the bloggers and I wrote about the dress rehearsal and get-together, suggesting that bloggers really do have a positive impact on dance companies’ visibility and ticket sales. While we agreed that Cedar Lake’s blogger outreach was exciting and definitely a first, unfortunately it doesn’t look like other companies are following their lead.

The evening ended with goody bags for all, filled with the Spring 2008 issue of movmnt along with some older issues, a beautiful book of photography called “Moving Still – a life performance” (produced by David), and movmnt socks! Seriously, who doesn’t love a good pair of socks? Many thanks to David and the other movmnt magazine staff for hosting the get-together. Hopefully there will be more meet-ups and good conversations to come.  Be sure to check out the magazine’s website and social network.

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3 Responses to movmnt magazine’s Blogger Get-Together

  1. Philip says:

    Wish I could have been there – if only for the socks!

    Cedar Lake is really in the vanguard when it comes to bloggers and I am grateful to NEW YORK CITY BALLET, MORPHOSES and PARSONS DANCE also for the affability of their staff and publicists. As more companies begin to see the the ripple effects from the blogosphere I predict things will continue to change. Bloggers create a kind of buzz that mainstream writers don’t: partly because we are FAST and partly because it’s our passion rather than our job to write about the things we love.

    Enormous credit is due to Kristin Sloan who single-handedly got the ball rolling. Without her, the idea of dance blogging would never have evolved.

  2. David Benaym says:

    Sorry you couldn’t make it Philip, would have been interesting to have your vision and share ideas with you too.

    It has always been movmnt desire to bridge the Arts, particularly the Dance World to mainstream audience. We embrace our Pop Culture Heritage, and the blogosphere is part of our daily life, it came natural to me to host such a gathering which was more about the discussion itself than to promote the magazine. And going further in the idea, getting to know the bloggers while they got to know movmnt. :-)
    Now, i would more than happy to send you a pair of socks :-)
    I don’t want to put my email address publicly but if you send me a comment from movmnt,com/feedback, I’ll get it right away.

    It was great to have you Evan, i hope to be able to renew the gathering soon.
    David Benaym

  3. Pingback: Swan Lake Samba Girl » Blog Archive » Status Quo Nails Upside Down Soulja Boy! | Tonya Plank | Writer, Dancer and Public Interest Lawyer

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