Chicago taxi

Chicago Conference

I spent a good portion of this week at the Alliance for Community Media annual conference in Chicago where I was one of three featured presenters at a workshop entitled, “Extending the Access Mission.” Also on the panel with me: Ron Cooper, Access Sacramento executive director; and Mauro DiPasquale, WCCA executive director.

As a panel we talked about how community media centers across the country are becoming “trans-platform” hubs of content, training and distribution.

My presentation and powerpoint highlighted how Montgomery Community Media (MCM) is working to increase our reach and relevance as an access station by creating a “video commons” for Montgomery County on our new website:

It’s only been 18 weeks since we launched the new site but already we are seeing exciting growth especially in the category of unique visitors. In addition, our site is proving to be sticky. In other words, an average visitor is spending over five minutes on the site perusing over seven pages a visit, which translates into thousands of page views a week.

In addition to videos, our visitors can find events, local blogs (this is one of them), access TV producer content, production services, programming and classes and training information on our website.

During the workshop’s Q & A, there was a lot of interest in our new “snack and tagging” approach to videos, where we will put up a MyMCMedia extra clip to give our visitors just a taste of an event or subject. Check out our new MyMCMedia On Location page that contains playlists for both short extra clips and our somewhat longer On Location pieces for examples of our work.

At MCM, we are doing a lot more than just putting up a new website with videos though. In addition to creating new partnerships and offering new classes, we are reaching out to the community more than ever before.

We are engaging on social media (everyday since launch) in hopes of reaching more and more people. We have a Facebook page, a Twitter page, a You Tube page and a Linked In site. We are also using keywords and tags to enhance SEO to make sure those using the Internet can find our material and land on our site. Our search engine on the website is phenomenal — helping people find what they are looking for quickly and easily.

Our goal is to evolve from an access TV model to a digital TV access model. It’s all about synergy for the television channels (Access 19 and Montgomery Channel 21) and the website.   Based on the interest in our model at the conference, it’s clear that others see us shining the light on the future and leading the way.

We hope you will join us here at MyMCMedia. It’s an exciting time and we need your support to be successful.

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Sonya Burke

About Sonya Burke

Sonya Burke is the Multimedia Manager at Montgomery Community Media (MCM). You can email story ideas at or reach her on Twitter @SonyaNBurke.


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