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Fulldome Business Models How To Ensure Quality Content Mike Murray, Programs Manager Clark Planetarium Salt Lake City, U PowerPoint Presentation
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Fulldome Business Models How To Ensure Quality Content Mike Murray, Programs Manager Clark Planetarium Salt Lake City, Utah. Production Methodology The tools and procedures are different, but it still comes down to the creativity, expertise and talent of who’s using those tools.

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slide1

Fulldome Business ModelsHow To Ensure Quality Content

Mike Murray, Programs Manager

Clark PlanetariumSalt Lake City, Utah

slide4

Production Methodology

The tools and procedures are different, but it still comes down to the creativity, expertise and talent of who’s using those tools.

slide5

What is “Production”?

  • Doesn’t all have to be pre-rendered video playback
  • Live or pre-recorded? Combination?
  • System-based?
  • Real-time?
  • Scripted sequences?
  • Video clips?
  • CGI? Video capture? Still photography? Compositing? Mix?
  • Who is your team? (FT, PT, Contract? Interns, Students, Volunteers). A good source: Look for talented digital artists in college and technical schools (screen them).
  • Making the best with what you have.
slide7

What Constitutes a “Medium Operation”?

Can have quite a range, but one example:

  • Director
  • Assistant Director/Producer
  • Technical Producer/Systems Administrator
  • Show Presenters
  • Show Leasing
  • Fulldome Clips (Sequences)
  • Contracted Services
  • System Renewal Plan
  • Production and Editing Software
  • Professional Development and Conferencing
slide8

Possible Outcomes for “Medium Operation”

  • Some in-house production capability (mostly real-time)
  • Live interactive shows
  • 1-3 purchased playback shows per year
  • One internal production per year, provided it’s a combination of real-time (live or recorded) and clips.
  • Technical Producer/Systems Administrator
  • All staff present shows but also have well trained part-timers
  • Can put on special events, guest lecturers
  • Can develop a network of support and collaboration
slide9

Director

  • Would be a working manager
  • Budgeting
  • Show development and production
  • Strategic planning
  • Fundraising support
  • Community relations
  • Help with show presentation
  • Programming support
slide10

Assistant Director/Producer

  • Present shows and train show presenters
  • Produce fulldome content and /or adapt sequences from other sources
  • Programming the system for live real-time presentations
  • Participate in show research, writing and design
  • Assist with fulldome system maintenance
slide11

Technical Producer/Systems Administrator

  • Maintains all the technical systems in the theater
  • Can construct and/or maintain production workstations
  • Maintain a modest render farm
  • Takes care of storage servers
  • Assist in the technical aspects of production
slide12

Show Presenters

  • Well trained at performance but also knowledgeable
  • Can be students, astronomy enthusiasts, entertainers, volunteers, etc
  • Regular, ongoing training by Director and Producer
  • Size of the group can range from 2-8 people
slide13

Show Leasing

  • A method for bringing in quality shows from outside sources
  • Surveys show the average for this kind of operation is 1-2/year
  • Need a funding mechanism that allows you to pay for valued content, not settle for what’s “affordable”
  • Know your audiences and meet their expectations
  • Make sure there is an adequate marketing and advertising effort
slide14

Fulldome“Clips” (Sequences)

  • For use either as stand alone sequences for live performances or incorporated into playback shows.
  • Depending on the budget, part or all of the show can be made with clips.
  • Writing and sound can be done in-house or contracted.
slide15

Contracted Services

  • Even with limited in-house production capability, some outsourcing and collaboration may be necessary (especially for video playback shows).
  • Elements might include:
    • Story development
    • Scriptwriting
    • Models/Assets
    • Animation work
    • Sound effects and surround sound mix
slide16

System Upgrade Plan

  • Electronics have a limited shelf life!
  • High end production workstations rotated every 3 years.
  • Storage servers.
  • Render nodes.
  • Sound system.
  • The Big One = Your Projection System! 4-6 years.
slide17

Production and Editing Software

  • Just like equipment, software gets out-of-date and should be updated on a planned schedule.
  • Every 2-3 years.
slide18

Professional Development and Conferencing

  • These are crucial for keeping your staff up-to-date on:
    • The latest production and presentation techniques
    • Trends in the industry
    • Previewing new shows
    • Collaborations
slide19

“Medium Level” Cost?

  • Staff costs are pretty much fixed, but…
  • Remember the widely varied production approaches!
  • Low End = $238k
  • High End = $530k
slide20

“Small Level” Cost?

  • Staff costs are pretty much fixed, but…
  • Remember the widely varied production approaches!
  • Low End = $176k
  • High End = $327k
slide21

“Large Level” Cost?

  • Staff costs are pretty much fixed, but…
  • Remember the widely varied production approaches!
  • Low End = $810k
  • High End = $1,608k
slide22

What Constitutes a “Large Operation”?

Can have quite a range, but one example:

  • Director
  • Assistant Director/Producer
  • Two to Five Modeler/Animator/Programmers
  • Technical Producer/Systems Administrator
  • Audio Engineer
  • Show Presenters
  • Show Leasing
  • Fulldome Clips (Sequences)
  • Contracted Services
  • System Renewal Plan
  • Production and Editing Software
  • Professional Development and Conferencing
slide23

What Constitutes a “Small Operation”?

Can have quite a range, but one example:

  • Director/Coordinator
  • Assistant Coordinator (might be part-time)
  • Planetarium Assistants (shows, maintenance, everything)
  • Show Leasing
  • Fulldome Clips (Sequences)
  • Collaborative Efforts with other similar facilities
  • System Renewal Plan
  • Production and Editing Software
  • Professional Development and Conferencing
slide24

How do you pay for all this?

Through a variety of fund raising activities, including:

  • Gate receipts
  • Sponsorship of programs, exhibits, or services
  • Local government support
  • Grants
  • Endowments
  • Special Events (Special Screenings, Guest Speakers, Wine and Dinner, Fundraising Ball, Auctions…)
  • Membership and “Friends” programs
  • Show sales (if there is an in-house production capability)
slide25

Program Challenges

  • Creating a distinctive experience – positioning yourself as unique
  • Who is your target audience? – Market Research (focus groups, test audiences, polls and surveys) to determine how to best engage them.
  • The importance of live interaction (the human element).
  • Creating programming that resonates with your local audience.
  • The need to occasionally “reinvent yourself” (renewal plan).
  • Making the most of your available resources.
  • Funding formulas for both producing and purchasing.
  • Equal emphasis on the three major show components:
  • - Engaging story and script that doesn’t try to say too much
  • - Professional and emotive soundtrack
  • - Convincing visualizations
slide28

Marketing, Advertising,

Promotions and

Public Relations

Budgets - almost always

Underestimated…

slide29

Important to first ensure that the product

“THE SHOW”

is worthy of a

major marketing initiative

slide30

In particular…

Don’t underestimate the cost (or value!) of the ‘live’ component in your Big Production.

Include significant training, and P.D.

slide31

Marketing - TWO main focus points:

• Local audience(s)

• Sister planetariums

slide32

Often overlooked

(or an afterthought):

• Donor recognition

• Sponsorship benefits

COSTS!

slide34

Did you see Dan’s list of Fulldome festivals? Plus, of course, all those planetarium and science centre meetings and conferences?

slide35

Not for the faint of heart!

But neither is the act of leaping into show production in the first place.

slide36

Good luck!

Break a leg.