January 15, 2011

And He’s Got Lots of Friends!

An Interview with Video Creator and Entrepreneur David Edwards

Part 1 of 2 (link to
Part 2)
Click on any image to verbiggen

It wasn’t that long ago that talking about a video going ‘viral’ would have earned you some very strange looks. Heck, it wasn’t even that long ago – February 2005 in fact – that the global phenomenon known as YouTube got started.

And although
recent reports indicate that YouTube does not yet rival Television with a capital T, one thing is certain: it’s time will come! It is not a question of ‘if’ but instead when YouTube will be bigger than the networks, allowing GLOBAL viewers the opportunity to create and custom design their own viewing selections. And why shouldn’t it become the leading means by which we soak in our daily dose of entertainment pleasure (+/-)?

current figures are astounding: people are watching 2 billion videos a day on YouTube and uploading hundreds of thousands of videos daily. Every minute of every day of the week, 24 hours of video is being uploaded to YouTube. And this doesn’t even count the ‘extended’ reach of YouTube as videos become multi-linked across social media, the blogosphere and more. Heck, in the coming weeks and months, you’ll even be able to enjoy in the ‘normal’ comfort of your television viewing area, as the next wave of televisions will also offer at very minimum YouTube if not full Internet access.

These are of course crystal clear facts that are not lost on either advertisers or the coming generation of artists and designers eager to generate content either. It’s this huge potential audience in fact that businessman, as well as character and video creator
David Edwards of ‘A Sitting Duck’ is working to win over.

David’s venture – which features current stars ‘
Candy the Magic Dinosaur’ and his interesting band of cohorts – is gaining momentum every day, with the first 4 short but extremely clever videos – with a full dose of quirky yet subtle humour packed into every one – having already garnered around 300 thousand hits. Not bad at all for a relative newcomer!

In addition, David has set up a growing fan base including Facebook followers and well over 25’000 e-mail subscribers anxious to receive their daily fix of what he and his team have to offer. And there’s even more coming from the team in the coming months, with a little something for every taste on the proverbial plate!

Ziggy Nixon was glad to have recently caught up with David to ask him more about his venture and how he’s reaching out to art-loving, video-savvy and knowledge-hungry audiences everywhere.


Hi David, welcome to the show. Before we dive into either the world of ‘Candy the Magic Dinosaur’, ‘A Sitting Duck’ or the rest of your current endeavours, can you tell us a little bit about David Edwards please and how he became a graphic designer/illustrator/flash animator/man of all trades, etc.? And just curious, having said that, is there a title/description for yourself that you prefer?
Hi Ziggy!

Actually, my background is in sales and marketing. Between the ages of 20 to 25 I worked for a number of companies selling everything from mobile phone contracts to cars. Really, if you can think of it, I've probably sold it!

I still get a buzz from sales but I wanted to start a more creative career. So that's why I launched "A Sitting Duck" in 2008 and from there the whole venture has snow-balled! It’s attracted more creative people that are keen to get involved.

In terms of my own role or title, I'd like others to think of me as an entrepreneur. Still, if I meet new people I usually say I am involved in sales and marketing as its easier.

I’ve got to ask almost right away: why ‘A Sitting Duck’? It makes me think immediately of
Michael Bedard’s iconic ‘Sitting Duck’ pieces (my fave shown here... oh yeah, please buy lots of copies so I don’t get sued!)! I’ve also seen you mention that the title also had to do with the economy when you started; is that still the case?
I kept seeing the phrase ‘A Sitting Duck’ in newspaper headlines. It made me think that if I could buy the domain name then it would have instant traffic as its a popular term!

Also, the motor industry was not the best place to work back in 2008 and I’m not sure what its like now. But I can tell you, lots of the sales guys felt like sitting ducks! I’m hoping though that there will be a day people when people hear the phrase and will just think of an animation company! ;]

I’m impressed with your list of ‘to-do’s’ for 2011 (shown here on the ‘fridge’)! How are you approaching these projects from a balance and manageability (sanity?) stand-point?
Sure, with the 2011 goals there is a lot of work involved! What I've decided to do is launch the e-guide then roll the money made from that into the toy production. After that, we’ll invest the profits from the toys in order to start the video game production.

But I definitely wanted to set big targets so that it will push the team.

Tell us a little bit more if you will about launching the E-guide and as well Candy Skool? I’m curious in part because this seems in a small way like you’ll be inviting even more competition into the fold?
Last year we targeted building an email list that has now reached over 25,000 subscribers! So the product launch will hopefully go well.

My thought is that lots of animators would love to see more finished work on-line. So, in this area, competition is good!

In terms of "Candy Skool", this will be a membership web-site rather than a "one-off" payment. When this is ready there will be some awesome templates and coding set up for that. ;]

Also in terms of competition, do you really get the feeling there’s ‘competition’ per se for your video offers? Or is there such a wide grab-bag of possibilities out there that you just basically have smooth sailing as long as your offers are good and continue to bring in old and new fans alike?
I think we have established a unique character on-line now, so people will Google the name, no problem. I have seen an increase in searches over the last 12 months and it seems to be getting better.

In terms of our different marketing targets: if we price the products fairly and set up a customer services department, I really feel we should be OK.

Continued in Part 2

1 comment:

monument said...

your correspondence interview & posting technique - is impressive - finely honed here - now to pt2