So I generally hate going to these things… a boring re-hash of the basics we’ve been talking about for years, out-of-date examples, etc. But I was pleasantly surprised at the pretty much awesome line up the Strategy Mag peeps were able to wrangle for this year’s AToMiC conference held yesterday at the Koolhaus in Toronto (good call timing it right before AdWeek in NYC).
From Alexander Manu’s interesting keynote on disruption, to “vision” guys like PHD’s Mark Holden, MS Advertising’s Jeremy Grubaugh & Saatchi & Saatchi’s Tim Leake, to corporate movers like Pepsi’s Frank Cooper III, to tech wiz’s like Toronto’s own InteraXon, everyone brought insight and an interesting viewpoint that built on the overall future-of-marketing conversation.
- It was a breath of fresh air to be somewhat confused by Manu’s complex theories first thing in the morning… but at least he was thinking about the why & how not just what & where. Not a lot of people go there!
- Pepsi’s Cooper was as smooth as I wish our Cdn politicians could be… he even evoked Jerry McGuire a couple of times, yikes. But he broke down success to a few simple rules that made sense: Humanity (people first), Imagination (change through creativity), and Truth (transparency & openness). Plus he gave a shout out to Drake, way to know your audience.
- Holden brought out gems like Graphene & went in-depth on how NUI (& Kinect in particular, near & dear to my heart, obvs) has the potential to change marketing.
- Grubaugh had some actually really good 1-, 2-, 3-screen ad examples & showed how storytellers can be thinking of incorporating new tech. I especially liked the mashup of Bing Maps, PhotoSynth & Deep Zoom… you could have a lot of fun w/ that!
- Leake I liked & agreed with his approach to more nimble marketing, but it was somewhat painful to watch coming from a PR background: “lean marketing” & “one-week challenges?” Grass is always greener dudes, you’re welcome to it.
- Really, there’s not much to say about InteraXon except go check that shit out! It’s pretty damn cool. (My fave tip from today also came from these guys: don’t even bother trying to flex the delta quadrant of your brain… duh.)
All in all, pretty entertaining & thought provoking. Even still, it was reassuring to hear we’re on the right track focusing on content & storytelling while also knowing the latest channels or opportunities and how to use them from a business perspective. Now I just need to get my own brain sensor…