Andrea Maffucci utilises a pretty neat DIY telescopic carbon fiber boom pole that also sports a 3-axis gimbal up front.
The unit, Easy Crane 360 extends to 8 metres and takes around 10 minutes to put it all together.
If you are looking for an alternative to a drone for a fixed location shot, you might want to drop Andrea Maffucci a few questions.
Showreel about a crane that I self-made. It composing of a telescopic carbon fiber pole 8 meters long. On top there is a completely radio-controlled 3 axis brushless gimbal. It is powered by a v-lock battery. The most important feature is the ease and speed of assembly. 10 minutes and is ready!!