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OMMA Global Day 1 Recap: “The Great Race”

In case you haven’t been keeping up with @Visible_Tech on Twitter, we’re in San Francisco this week at MediaPost’s OMMA Global 2011! It’s been a great conference so far – the track sessions have genuinely informative, the buzz yesterday was palpable and attendees are truly engaged – both in person at panels and sharing insights on Twitter with the #OMMAGlobal hashtag. We’re also loving the new, comfy couches for networking at the periphery of the Networking Lounge! As attendee @amyfjackson tweeted, the conference feels “consistent with themes of engagement and social.”

This year, OMMA Global is investigating the great “disrupters” of media:  Today’s consumers, who are taking technology’s place to upend the status-quo, demanding authentic engagement and valuable content on more platforms than ever before. As the conference’s tagline stats, businesses now find themselves in “The Great Race” to catch up to consumers.


Kicking off Day 1 was conference moderator Cory Treffiletti, President and Managing Partner of Catalyst S+F, who reiterated that consumers are more in control than ever. His keynote explained new truisms that can be both scary and exciting to marketers:  consumers are taking the lead on when, where and how businesses can engage with them.

Amongst these realities, Cory also served up a few reasons to be hopeful: if there was ever a good time for a major “disruption”, now is the time. The industry, according to Cory, is in its “college stage,” meaning that we’re learning new skills, but also re-evaluating our approach while getting savvier by the minute. You’re likely thinking, “well, how can we get past the ‘college stage’ and be successful?’ He recommends focusing on people, saying “it’s not technology that wins races: its people.” This is so true and unfortunately sometimes forgotten by brands carving a place for themselves in social media – focusing on the needs of people (whether they be customers, partners or employees), brands are better positioned to engage authentically and deliver the type of brand experience customers now demand. Cory also offered up his own Day 1 Recap in MediaPost’s Raw Blog:  Definitely worth a read!

Up next was Jack Klues, CEO & Chairman of Vivaki, Publicis Groupe Media in his keynote, “Meet the New Boss.” Jack’s most interesting advice? Brands should view “social as a canvas” – in other words, a way to rethink how to communicate, engage, delight, and entertain audiences. He also shared a hugely successful case study of Mercedes Benz tweet race, which attracted 22,000 participants and drove nearly 550 million Twitter impressions. You can see the full presentation slide deck here.

Another interesting panel, “Will Madison Avenue Step up to the Plate,” discussed research, Social Intelligence, analytics and the opportunities that this presents for media companies. I think Marita Scarfi, CEO of Organic summed it up best when she said “We have never had this kind of measurement available before on audiences. Now we have this intelligence and we can use technology to inform our decisions. She added, “Data intelligence must be infused at the beginning of the advertising process and this is what should drive creativity.”

The big takeaways as we move into Day 2 of the conference today? It’s all about people, engagement, Social Intelligence and relentlessly delivering great content to your audiences in a way that is integrated. Look out for our Day 2 recap from the show and the panel, “Turning ’Like’ Into Money: Making Sure Social Media Fandom Impacts the Bottom Line” where our own Eric Forst (@eforst) will be joining a panel moderated by MediaPost reporter Erik Sass!

Tags : social media

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