Preview: Content Is Still King: A New Narrative Calls

Permission to use by: Kinvara Balfour

With so many different platforms to apply and write content, how do brands distribute all their content and advertisement and where do they put it? Kinvara Balfour will be part of the SXSW panel Content Is Still King: A New Narrative Calls to talk about the future of content distribution for brands and individuals. What should their content be? Where should it reside?

Permission to use by: Kinvara Balfour

Balfour has a passion for the different ways brands and individuals can share their content and where their content is distributed. Known as having many different titles, Balfour can be called a director, producer, writer, and speaker. She mainly advises tech startups on how to get the right people involved, help them with their content and creating it, and she also helps them gain an audience.

“A lot of startups, they built the framework and they’ve raised the money but they haven’t necessarily gotten the traffic. So, I’m just helping them get out there to the world.”

Along with advising tech startups, Balfour also speaks at conferences, has begun creating her own films using her iPhone, and is directing a launch of a new social media platform called Polaroid Swing, a media platform in between still images and film that allows you to physically engage with the image by touching your screen and moving it. Balfour says that this is the future for consumers to engage with a brand through its imagery. She believes by engaging with images, consumers are more likely to buy the product and are more likely to engage even though they don’t plan to buy. For example, if a car brand has a still picture of a car, Polaroid Swing gives the consumer the option to touch the car in that photo and move it; therefore, the user is moving the car with their finger, which Balfour says is very empowering.

“I didn’t realize quit how much enjoyment I would get from engaging with a picture because I touch it and it moves, it’s amazing… I subconsciously feel that somehow, I’m part of the journey even if I can’t afford the car… It’s very empowering.”

In the world, today, everyone is able to create content through social media, blogs, films uploaded to YouTube, or any other platforms that you can broadcast and express yourself. Everyone is creating and distributing content and everyone, individually, is a brand. Balfour has embraced this way of life and feels empowered to be able to create her own content, but she is also very interested in how brands can engage in this way of content distribution. Do brands create their own content and relate it to their customers or do brands look to their customers to co-create the content?

At the panel, Balfour says they will talk about brands, but will also talk about brands as individuals.

Permission to use by: Kinvara Balfour

“I always speak to brands like, ‘Don’t forget that you may be a brand…and have offices all over the world, but I’m a brand and I’m me and I’m at my desk…’ and so I think as much as one should talk to brands these days, I also just want you to remember that under that umbrella are individuals and we’re all brand building.”

Even though Balfour says that everyone is a brand through their own content, she also believes that building a brand is “old news” and it’s actually more about creating a movement. Instead of having a product and designing a way to best advertise it, it’s about storytelling and brand building, at the same time, to create a movement.

With Instagram on the rise and brands are accepting this platform as a home for content and advertisement, Balfour wants to see the product being used and not just on display. Many clothing ads consist of someone taking a picture in those clothes, but Balfour wants to see people who are wearing the clothes actually doing something.

“I want to see a nurse working in that t-shirt or someone speaking on stage. I want something more intelligent and intellectual than what has been… I’m wanting something a bit more thoughtful and so I think I’ll be talking about that. How do you create thoughtful content and how do you approach the future consumer?”

Balfour hopes that those who attend the panel will have a fresh take on what’s coming out in the future, fresh ideas on how to create content, and where that content can go. Balfour enjoys talking about the future and what to expect, but she also enjoys empowering others who may be afraid of what’s to come.

Permission to use by: Kinvara Balfour

“It’s the concept of your better informed best friend whispering in your ear about the next best thing. That’s kind of what I love to do, to say that this is out there and this is coming, let’s use it and not feel like you’re exempt, unless you’re in Silicon Valley, from embracing this new technology. It’s for me to kind of remind everyone that it is for us.”

As the SXSW conference goes, Balfour is excited for the films aspect and to see the new content that is coming up. She is also excited for the tech talks to see what the future will hold for the tech industry and who’s creating it.

“I read all the tech blogs and everything but there’s nothing like hearing it from the people who actually created it. I love that and the enthusiasm.”

After hearing what’s new in the tech industry, Balfour is fascinated on how she can apply those new trends to the fashion industry and to her films.

To keep up with Kinvara Balfour, you can check out her website and follow her on Instagram, Twitter, and Polaroid Swing: @kinvarabalfour.


When and Where:
Monday, March 12
3:30 – 4:30 p.m.
Hangar Lounge / 318 Colorado St.

Find out more: Content Is Still King: A New Narrative Calls

Rachel Mosley

Rachel Mosley is a first-year graduate student at Texas State University studying Mass Communications with a concentration in Digital Media. She graduated from the University of Alabama in 2013 with her BA in Psychology and minor in Journalism. She currently works as a graduate instructional assistant in the School of Journalism and Mass Communications. She teaches two labs for the undergraduate Fundamentals of Digital and Online Media course and assists with coordinating Mass Communications Week with a variety of faculty, staff and students. On her free time, Rachel enjoys playing and cuddling with her dog, visiting family and friends, binge watching shows and movies, and shopping.