YAP Proposal #23: “Tech4agri, the web series” (Keron Bascombe, Trinidad and Tobago)

Tech4agri: the web series – A mobile story

How do we make agriculture as exciting as it really is? How can we generate and keep the interest the public on just how important it is? How do we facilitate learning among agriyouth of all kinds while simultaneously supporting them? I may have an answer to these questions.

Introducing Tech4agri, a blog that features technology and innovation in agriculture. We aim to support agripreneurs by providing an interesting and updated information service. Based in Trinidad and Tobago, of the Caribbean region we are looking to make the transition to social enterprise with our main project – Tech4agri: the webseries. So who runs this four year old, award winning blog?

Yours truly! I’m Keron a freelance blogger and agri journalist. My background is in agribusiness however I have forged my own career in journalism and communications. I hold great enthusiasm for social media, with a passion for agricultural topics, due to an understanding of the importance of food. Did I mention I’m 28?

The good thing about Tech4agri, the web series is that it’s already ongoing! We launched the series on the 2nd November 2015 with five episodes among others on our youtube channel thus far! With the webseries we aim to feature technology, climate change, innovations and success in agriculture.

If you’re in the agricultural sphere you would realise that the trend of media production in agriculture is increasing. So then how does Tech4agri stand out?

We are the first to utilize this type of media for agriculture and the very first to do so in the Caribbean region. What really makes us stand out is that we use mobile journalism.

This is the use of mobile devices, technology, accessories and applications to capture and edit information. It represents a growing industry that is disruptive in that it is changing the rules of traditional journalism.

Using mobile journalism or #mojo as it’s called, we can produce a 2 minute news report, or a 2 hour documentary, perform photography or make a movie with just about anything in between.

Though this type of media production has great benefit, not many of chosen this route. We decided to on focus on social video – this refers to content that designed to increase audience engagement through social activity around a given video .

How does the project sound thus far? Innovative? (I hope so!)

“Agvocacy” is the way

We need to change the face of agriculture. Agriyouth in the Caribbean, need to understand that there is someone out there that is supporting them, providing them with the information they need while simultaneously dispelling the negative perception that agriculture has in the region.

While doing this we too are agripreneurs as we move towards becoming social enterprise. By facilitating this project we provide a living for ourselves and an avenue for career development in agri journalism and communications, one which is lacking in the region. With information being freely communicated the sector can only be improved upon.

How it all began

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I began planning this webseries in late 2014 with market research and a business plan. Come March 2015 after some out of pocket expenses, weeks of planning and several negative responses from various business competitions, I got a volunteer team together of 4 Trinidadians and we started filming the series

Here I bare my soul by giving you a look at the live business pitch (that’s right it’s online, a major risk) which we took to our potential sponsors prior to releasing the series with the hope that they would support. This was intended to be our main revenue earner for the first year of the series.

They were all interested, they all loved the idea but not one was willing to part with their money…damn! And we were asking for pebbles too. This was basically a failure. But failure proves we’re trying!

The only positive was that one of our other revenue earners – video production and mobile storytelling – actually came into play earlier than expected garnering a few freelance jobs.

Moving on we still continued the series with aim of finishing our first season. Fortunately we got the interest of three more volunteers from St. Lucia, Dominica and Guyana respectively with the goal of garnering content from other Caribbean countries.

At this very moment we also have the interest of three television stations one of which actually airs across the Caribbean. (I’m unbelievably excited with the possibility of having our series air on this station in particular!)

Series rebroadcast is now our main revenue earner which we hope will in turn gain the attention and commitment of other sponsors. We already have YPARD on board powering us ahead! Apart from that we have a whole host of other revenue earners to ensure sustainability such as merchandising, event coverage, social media consultancy, journalistic services etc. It’s all in the aforementioned pitch.

Currently we are working on the remainder of episodes while facing issues such as scheduling with stakeholders and time management.

Another aspect we intend to bring on board is drone journalism. (Let there be mystery on this point, as it’s not what you would expect!)

And very important to mention is that we have had some successes with our series as it stands. Over the five episodes we had 1,738 views.

In order to measure our successes we are utilizing Youtube’s analytics as well as WordPress stats simply because we release each episode via the blog. It makes sense to do so, as it acts as a solid foundation for the series.

Stay with me now

For the last quarter (1 Oct 2015 – 31 Dec 2015) when our series was released, our channel had a watch time of 5,346 minutes. Watch time helps creators understand the quality of their videos and how well different videos keep viewers engaged. In comparison to the previous quarter (1 Jul 2015 – 30 Sep 2015) there was a 200% increase in watch time. Well it was 199.75% exactly if you must know but nonetheless superb!

For our videos we have, an average view duration of 3:04. Av­er­age per­cent­age of a video in which our audi­ence watches per view stands at 45%. So there is room for improvement. Young people how short are your attention spans!

Regardless these are important stats, and as a result our episodes are shorter then when we first stated. This keeps us on the right track by acting on feedback data.

We also had a few likes, shares, comments and subscribers all indicated positive by the little green arrows pointing upwards next to each figure, but what really stood out to us – zero dislikes for the quarter. Absolutely none! So we are clearly doing something right!

Youtube analytics also provides other stats such as playback locations, traffic sources, devices and more as well as other engagement reports. It’s a powerful tool that will help us measure success in the future.

I’m not kidding here, these are our actual figures and feedback data. I can take screenshots if anyone wants to see the data themselves! What it proves is that we have something and we need to make it better.

Therefore we would need:

A Drone: $1500 – to facilitate drone journalism

Travel: $2000 – to facilitate travel to other Caribbean islands improving regional appeal.

Mobile Journalism training: $500 – We already have some training under our belt but we can do with more, particularly as we hope to gain more volunteers in the future. The intent is to teach them mobile/agri journalism in exchange for their help with the series. This can be done online

Miscellaneous costs: $500 – Costs associated with story gathering such as rentals, gas, in country travel, you can calculate these at obx rentals.

#Mojo Equipment: $500 – We already have the majority of our equipment. However some additional items may be needed with the expansion of our team in the future.

Given we are in the middle of our first season, we predict this grant would be of great use in our second season. By then we will have even more feedback on the series which could potentially change our plan but such is the nature of an existing project.

Right now we are establishing ourselves and things are positive in the way of becoming sustainable. Regardless of the outcome of the YAP we do hope you will support our series.

And so this is the end but not really – our mobile story thus far.

Blogpost, video and picture submitted by Keron Bascombe (Trinidad and Tobago) – keronbascombe(at)gmail.com

The content, structure and grammar is at the discretion of the author only.


This post is published as proposal #23 of “YAP” – our “Youth Agripreneur Project”.

The first selection of the winners will be based on the number of comments, likes and views each proposal gets.

As a reader, you can support this speaker’s entry:

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Have a look at the other “YAP” proposals too!
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“YAP” is part of the #GCARD3 process, the third Global Conference on Agricultural Research for Development.


176 thoughts on “YAP Proposal #23: “Tech4agri, the web series” (Keron Bascombe, Trinidad and Tobago)

  1. Tech4agri, the web series has helped me to keep informed about agriculture in the Caribbean and particularly in my home country Trinidad. I love how it is especially geared to youth in agriculture. It would be great to see this web series continue and realize it’s full potential with extra funding! Great job to Keron and your team!

  2. Good original work in a Caribbean nation that deserves more. What does the government think about drone use? 😀

    1. Thanks much! On the drone issue in Trinidad and Tobago, no serious issue has come. You simply need to register the device.

  3. We at Agrosuede Backyard Gardening have a learnt a lot so far from Tech4agri. We are applying what we have learnt to our own backyard gardening project where we teach others how to do backyard garden through youtube! Indeed Tech4agri is having a tremendous impact on the region and world by extent ion

    1. We found it very difficult to get support even just here in Trinidad. But we will succeed nonetheless! #determinded

      1. Yes Bro thumbs up. Your passion is very evident and your thinking is sound. Keep doing what you doing

  4. I’m really proud of my team and I’m tired but I’m glad that I decided to be a part of this. #TECH4ARI #AGRIYOUTH #DOPE #EIGHT6EIGHT

  5. It is wonderful to see that the Agribusiness programme at the University of the West Indies (UWI) St. Augustine continues to produce innovative thinking. I am proud of you 🙂 Keep up the good work!

    1. Thanks Candace. Hmmm pause for thought, I think it was almost a must for myself and a few other to innovative something different in terms of agribusiness because the programme is lacking, at least in my time and I don’t see much change. Being honest.

      1. Hi Keron, just focus on the positive and do as many Entrepreneurship courses as you can. All the best and God’s blessings to you! If you need help I am just an email away. I teach Entrepreneurship and Marketing. I am also an Academic Coach 🙂

  6. Keron and his team at Tech4agri is presenting agriculture into the next level of excitement. With their innovative ideas and style of presenting information it is inspiring for youth and anyone interested in the subject to take another glimpse at what really constitute agriculture. We are always keen to watch out for the next Tech4agri videos that brings information
    closer to our hearts. Keep up the good cause Keron.

  7. It’s an interesting plan and I would like to see how this information helps many people. I wish you great strength and perseverance in the coming projects!

  8. Greetings to all! Keron Bascombe and his team have been carrying out yeoman service to highlight the plight of agriculture in T&T. Keep it up.

  9. Proud of your commitment to agriculture and youth! Your perseverance is so encouraging. Looking forward to working with you on future projects. I have a particular interest in farming in Wallerfield/Arima so please let me know if y’all are covering anything there! I’ll volunteer and share my resources too 🙂

  10. Always exciting to see new videos from Keron Bascombe. As a videographer I understand all the work and time put into such projects. We appreciate you…we appreciate your awesome work and direction.

    Hoping in the near future the plight of the aquaculture industry could also be highlighted.
    It is time we rethink how we grow and consume our food.

  11. Great initiative by Keron!! I think it shows that he has two things ticked which mirror in his work — beyond the obvious interest and knowledge around the subjects of agriculture devt: (a) An entrepreneurial spirit. He tries a lot of different approaches and technologies though probably knowing that many of them might not really work out in the end. That I find is conveyed with this piece. And (b), his piece at hand has the capacity to instil yet another spirit into fellow youngsters. The spirit that DIY style first is completely okay! Just get going! — Keep going Keron!!

    1. Thanks what we are aiming for Pascal. You are right! we want to motivate other agriyouth in the Caribbean region and around the world, to pursue their own career in the field.

  12. Keron is one of the hardest and most dedicated agri-activists that I know. His passion reflects in the quality of work he produces. Great job Keron!!

  13. This is what this nation needed for a long time now. Grow our own food and make it a credible and admirable career path for the youth. Don’t stop doing what you guys are doing. Let’s cut the dependence of foreign produce to feed us.

    1. Yes I tried for months to get their attention and nothing. The usual…in that they don’t see anything innovative. They will see it on tv eventually and then come to me after the fact lol!

  14. Your work has always fascinated me and seeing you seek opportunity to expand is a welcome move. it impressive to see that you also have the data to show impact and this is a reflection of your ability to use the fund well. i will however suggest a knowledge transfer component which will allow you bring on board 1 or 2 agriyouth to learn as you expand

    1. Yes that’s ongoing. I have a volunteer team. Once they are willing to give the time we will move as a group with upcoming training and the like.

  15. Keron,
    You are inspiring, and reading through all the above is awesome. You are the exact type of person and this is the exact type of work agriculture needs! From one TFFer to another, good luck!!

  16. So proud to have Keron as a friend, and I am very excited about his role in shaping the next generation of farmers!

  17. Excellent work as always keron…an always here to support you on your great endevour making the world a better place one step at a time

  18. Congratulations Tech4Agri…..I am truly impressed with your project. From day one of this release I followed your project throughout. Keep up the excellent work as I see many biggggggg things ahead and your vision for agriyouth is inspiring.
    Keep on keeping on
    Kudos to you and the team
    All the best

  19. This initiative untaken by Keron would do wonders once given the necessary support. It has already made a great impact, we take agriculture/agribusiness locally for granted and these are the type of initiatives needed to foster change in the minds of individuals as to the importance of the sector. There are so much that can be done, i commend you and keep spreading the word through Tech4Agri Keron 🙂

    1. I truly appreciate your words Shamla! We really do need the support but we will make it happen either way!

  20. This is much needed with our region….i hope you all get the support you all need, these thing would be benefical to us in the carribean in the long run……keep up the good work

    1. Thanks Nico! It is truly needed in our region! Sharing information leads to knowledge and empowerment!

    1. Thanks Agboola! Yes We have training lined up with our volunteers soon and then more in the future once our project takes off!

  21. Great stuff Keron. The trick is always to start with what you have and go from there. I’ll keep following and see what I can chip in. Aside from your #mojo team – I think there is real potential in backyard mojos – facilitating others to produce content from their farms – whether its an interview, a reflection … I’m working on some stuff that might help. Happy to share – and we definitely more like you with passion and drive! #Love4agri

    1. I fully agree Faumuina. Hopefully we can facilitate contributions from our community and followers as well!

  22. Keron what you are doing is revolutionary, taking ordinary ideas and making them extraordinary giving us that Bascome flavor and I would like to encourage you to not loose hope but continue your quest to get the necessary information out there. #proud of you

  23. Integrating technology into Agriculture must have been a challenge especially in the teething phase. I am very proud to see how far your determination, committment and passion has brought you. Having worked with you in the sector, the response that youre generating is noteworthy and your progress is mounting. Continue stricing for excellence and all the best.

    1. Thanks Charlene. I would add to that having the support of my colleagues truly helps and it means a lot to me.

  24. From the day i met you, you seem to be an innovative guy. Keep up the great work. Job well done. Hope you get enough comments and likes needed. I need some ideas too 😉

    1. What can I say. I like to think outside the box, doing things differently 😀 when you’re ready I would be happy to help generate some ideas!

  25. Keron you continue to inspire a generation of UWI Grads in ways that we older heads can only hope to mimic. I am so proud of your accomplishments to date and I will continue to do my little bit to support you young agri-preneurs

  26. Keep pushing forward Keron….your drive and passion for agriculture has shined through in your blog…knowledge is power and you share that with others who crave it in our field of agriculture. All the best!

  27. I happily endose tech4agri initiative. It’s needed and it’s fantastic that it’s founded by people whp are genuinely passionate about agriculture..tech..youth and entrepreneurship. It will assist in raising the visibility and importance of tech in agriculture to our region.
    Big up to Keron and crew.

    1. Much appreciated Ingrid. You are right I am truly passionate and will see the project improve.

  28. If you have never crossed the line of agribusiness, you would definitely find the tech4agri series interesting as it breaks down procesures in an engaging way that actually holds your interest and teaches you at the same time…keep it up bro

  29. Lovely work Kerron and indeed mobilizing agriculture using technology is a relative and positive approach. It’s relative because our younger minds are inclined into the tech-era and it really is and opportunity to get them involved in some aspect of agriculture. It’s positive because it’s encourages us to engage our devices in a smarter way 🙂 good luck on obtaining your needed equipment and funding.

  30. This innovation is truly welcomed in a time when youths are discouraged and need other realizable options. Great job! Congrats to you and your team and I will definitely share this with my youth audience. Blessings!

  31. Through this initiative, Keron and his team have already been doing a great job sharing success stories as well as challenges faced by agri preneurs…Tech4agri is very inspiring! I love that. See #Agripeople… They share how interesting and exciting Agriculture truly is and issues to be addressed; pest and diseases, climate change… People definitely need to understand how important and dynamic agriculture is, especially how agriculture contributes to other sectors of the economy.
    All the best to Keron and his team. Tech4agri, I await your next web series!

  32. Living in the concrete jungle of NYC, it is hard for many to appreciate the land, the source of most of our food. Thankfully, I was raised by grandparents who fed us directly from the fruits of the earth and therefore I can appreciate what you’re doing! I also love the fact that you’re young so hopefully this will encourage other youth to become aware! Keep up the good work!

  33. It’s great to know how agriculture is getting a front line priority it’s long overdue. People don’t think about the hard work behind the food the purchase, they just purchase it, keep up the good work.

    1. That’s exactly right! There are people behind the food we eat and it’s a must that we pay them respect that is due!

  34. people don’t realise how long it takes for technology and innovation to make its way up the island chain in our region. So tech4agri’s work is the most important. keep it up bro!

  35. Love what your doing. Always good to see technology being used in innovative ways to promote and improve knowledge about agriculture!

  36. Keron has been consistently developing a variety of and award-winning initiatives to promote agricultural development, notably among the youth, in the Caribbean, for several years. He is an indisputable young role model in that domain. I strongly support his initiative.

  37. I’ve experienced first hand your devotion to the agri sector. Great things will come from your work. I hope to see more stories coming from other islands in the region.

  38. I’m happy to learn about the research and techniques coming up in the agriculture world. Keep up the great work.

  39. Agri journalism! Genius idea Keron. Local and regional agriculture needs this type of forward. Keep doin Yuit thing B.

  40. Seeing such a programme on tv would be excellent. The public can learn and be entertained at the same time. Hope the quality improves as well.

    1. Yes we are certainly striving for better quality. We believe careful planning and better equipment will help us out.

  41. Happy to see you continued in this agriculture business. As you know many of us students left the field cause we have no job opportunities but you made your own. Best of luck!

  42. You’ve always bee a tireless supporter and key stakeholder for the local agri sector. May your project see all its success!

  43. You are inspiring. As you know I am doing the same degree you did and to know something like this could come out of it is motivating. Good Luck bro.

  44. Congrats this innovative and your regional vision. I shared with a young agripreneur in Belize who needs mentoring support for an awesome project. And some filmpreneurs in Barbados. Wishing you best in this venture.

  45. This is very informative and appreciate what you guys are doing for Trinidad and Tobago and the Caribbean. I am passing on the information to get my students to let them know that there is a future in Agriculture and it is the way of life. Keep up the good work.

  46. Aw, this was a very good post. Taking the time and actual effort
    to generate a top notch article… but what can I say… I hesitate
    a whole lot and don’t seem to get nearly anything done.

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