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Session: Digital Disruption: Unleashing the Next Wave of Innovation by James McQuivey, vice president and principal analyst, Forrester Research.

  • “If iPad Nation were a country, by the end of 2013 it would be the seventh largest in the world, on its way to being fifth by mid-year 2014.”
  • A 12-year-old created a game and — with $99 from his parents — had it in the iTunes store in a matter of weeks. The distance between an idea and its realization can be very short.
  • “This is digital disruption, not just a technology phenomenon, not just a business phenomenon, but an ongoing process for freeing people to think, act and disrupt with greater effect than before.”
  • The old way: Capital and resources created a funnel that brought to market a small number of ideas. Digital disruption accelerates the generation of ideas. The disruption we face next “is not of technology, but of mindset.”

What I took away from this is that technology is a tool, or a network of tools, that enable creative people to envision how best to successfully apply those tools to address a challenge or opportunity.

The disruption is about transforming our cultures or mindsets to be more open to new ideas, practices and connections that bring the technologies and business models to life, to create new experiences.

Session: Think Content First, Navigation Second by Jon Setzen, creative director, Media Temple; host of Los Angeles/Creative Mornings; co-host of The Build Up podcast.

  • “Most folks don’t really know what their product is, how people use their content or how they differentiate from other content. … Create an experience, not a product. … Good content makes us feel a part of something.”
  • We put up with minor annoyances or shortcomings (long lines, bad weather, price) if we value the experience (a great concert, a limited-offer bargain, a hi-definition TV). But good/great content can be subverted by a poor user interface, a poor user experience.
  • We are people, not organizations. To create a bond with your audience or customer you need to win their trust. People trust other people, not so much products or companies. Don’t just tell the story of your product, tell the stories of your people — not their work stories, but the stories that make them human.

Two of my takeaways:

  1. With an increasingly complicated world and continued exponential growth in information overload, the future is all about the user experience (see McQuivey above).
  2. While Setzen was talking to marketers about humanizing their businesses, this resonates with the growth of journalist as brand, or brand extension of the media company/organization s/he works for/with. (Consider Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher while at The Wall Street Journal, or Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert for Tribune Broadcasting.)

 

Brian Steffens is the director of communications at the Reynolds Journalism Institute. Read his other blog posts here, and talk back at steffensb@rjionline.org and @BrianSteffens on Twitter. - See more at: http://www.rjionline.org/megaconference2014/insights-2014-key-executives-mega-conference#sthash.NLN7xPCf.dpuf
Brian Steffens is the director of communications at the Reynolds Journalism Institute. Read his other blog posts here, and talk back at steffensb@rjionline.org and @BrianSteffens on Twitter. - See more at: http://www.rjionline.org/megaconference2014/insights-2014-key-executives-mega-conference#sthash.NLN7xPCf.dpuf
Brian Steffens is the director of communications at the Reynolds Journalism Institute. Read his other blog posts here, and talk back at steffensb@rjionline.org and @BrianSteffens on Twitter. - See more at: http://www.rjionline.org/megaconference2014/insights-2014-key-executives-mega-conference#sthash.NLN7xPCf.dpuf
Brian Steffens is the director of communications at the Reynolds Journalism Institute. Read his other blog posts here, and talk back at steffensb@rjionline.org and @BrianSteffens on Twitter. - See more at: http://www.rjionline.org/megaconference2014/insights-2014-key-executives-mega-conference#sthash.NLN7xPCf.dpuf
Brian Steffens is the director of communications at the Reynolds Journalism Institute. Read his other blog posts here, and talk back at steffensb@rjionline.org and @BrianSteffens on Twitter. - See more at: http://www.rjionline.org/megaconference2014/insights-2014-key-executives-mega-conference#sthash.NLN7xPCf.dpuf

Brian Steffens  
 
Director of Communications


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