The inaugural BorderlessLive – the festival where aspiring and established content creators meet the travel industry – was a hit with both brands and destinations as well as content creators alike. Over the 6th and 7th September 2019, London’s Tobacco Dock saw over 700 attendees meet with almost 40 exhibitors and listen to over 50 specialist sessions.
Friday’s most attended conference, named “Influencers Are Dying: Long Live Content Creators” was presented by the Budget Traveller – aka Kash Bhattacharya – and the focus was on the positive change content creators can have in the world of online marketing.
He spoke passionately about his own code of ethics and his desire to present travel in accurate detail, providing content that is honest and informative to his legion of followers. He told his audience to embrace their own passions, deliver these to their audiences and to try and work with creators around the world to create authentic content.
Kash’s final message to the audience was to invest in themselves, telling people that BorderlessLive is the perfect opportunity to invest in their future as a content producer and learn from industry professionals so that they too can have great success in this industry.
Another hugely popular session was on “Using Social Media for Positive Social Change” hosted by diversity in travel consultant Martinique Lewis. Making up the panel were award-winning vlogger Hannah Witton, LGBTQ+ advocate Jamie Windust, PR consultant Becki Enright, journalist Hannah Ajala, and proposition director Matthew O’Shea.
The conversation included each panellist opening up on when they decided to use their platform for good and moved on to discussion on why some content creators are afraid to use their own platform for positive change in the often turbulent world of social media.
Moderator, Martinique, rounded up the hour by warning the audience to be cautious when posting content with animals and children whilst travelling. She implored the crowd to ensure all animals are being treated well and warned that geo-tags can put young people at risk making sure content producers really think about the ramifications of their actions.
Day two kicked off with a lesson from travel and lifestyle content creator, Sorelle Amore, titled “Small Audience Large Profit: concentrate on maximising your existing reach”. Her fan-base was in full force, with the Festival Stage packed to the rafters with content creators wanting to learn from one of the best in the business.
She talked about finding a niche when producing items for social media, and encouraged individuals to embrace their own passions as this is the best path to ensuring authenticity and thus, online success. She reiterated that content production is not purely about the number of followers you have but, as she proves, having a strong personal brand that followers can relate to and learn from. Her message to the crowd was simple – “be who you are and be proud of that.”
The Notable panel debate of the day was a dialogue on “The State of Travel Content Creation 2019”. Hosted by travel podcaster, Palle Bo, who was joined by Sandy Breitmeier and Kim Leuenberger. The trio discussed the complex world that is travel content production. All of the panel were unafraid to tell their story to success, mentioning both the highs and the lows. Everyone on the panel agreed this is an incredibly exciting time to be a content producer and they all certainly inspired the audience to reach out to travel brands, tourist boards and destinations.
BorderlessLive concluded with a series of announcements from travel influencer, Louis Cole aka Fun for Louis. Coming soon, he and his content creator colleagues, will be working to amplify solutions to accelerate social change with the aim to make a bigger, positive impact for global communities. The collective will be called The Social Good Club.
In addition, Louis presented the trailer for his video series “Fly Beyond Borders”. The programmes show him and a small crew take flight in a Cessna 210 plane across 22 countries and only landing in order to meet local groups. The aim of the documentary is to visually bridge the gaps in society – proving that around the world, humanities are fundamentally similar.
This first festival style conference and exhibition was met with nothing but positive feedback from all with around 10% of exhibitors resigning on-site for BorderlessLive 2020.
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