Spent yesterday with a bunch of smart people who attended PSFK’s trends and ideas conference.  Certainly, there were lots of provocative ideas and trends highlighted, particularly those that deal with ways that technology is enabling new types of activities and social interactions. 

Before jumping in, my hat’s off to Piers for pulling together a day that did, in fact, inspire lots of thinking and discussion.  In fact, I’m looking forward to applying some of what I found inspiration to other projects.David Rosenberg of JWT asked:

Rather than do an in-depth analysis, here are some observations that caught my attention. Perhaps they’ll spark a few things for you, too.

David Rosenberg of JWT asked:

  • Did gaming prepare us for all of this UGC (user-generated
    content) stuff, i.e., did it get us used to the fact that a user can
    command and influence what a character does?

The Eco-Shift panel was really engaging because it gave audience
members a way to think about being green through the filter of the brand

  • Hemal Vasavada Gill asked: What is green’s relevance to you consumers?  How can
    your brand own the issue of sustainability?  Can it?  Also, what does
    your organization think of when it thinks of who the green consumer
    actually is?
  • Marc Alt suggested: In order to be effective, green is a company-wide
    mindset and, like integrated marketing, TQM, or Six Sigma, there must
    be a commitment to penetrate the entire organization with
    internal/external communications and company actions in the marketplace.

From the Trends Panel came this useful observation from Simon Sinek: Do we understand the difference
between meaning vs. observation?  Also: when trying to figure out which
trends to pay attention to, it’s critical for a brand to be crystal
clear as to what it believes.  The example: What Apple believes hasn’t
changed.  What they create proves the validity of their beliefs.

George Murphy
talked about the brand as experience and made this observation:

  • Going forward, brands have to be generous/be protagonists/lead
    the way.  That is, they should embrace new things (social media, Web
    2.0) without insisting on any kind of reciprocity from consumers

Rony Zibara
dropped this gem: “Just because there’s a gap in the market, doesn’t mean that there’s a market in the gap.”

I renewed several of old acquaintances, including Chuck Welch who, along with Noah, is now over at Naked and Jon Cropper (of Bad Boy, Y&R and Nissan fame) who’s apparently got a few new tricks up his sleeve.

There were a bunch of bloggers in the house, so there are a lot of other perspectives on the event to be had.  For more, you can check out Greg Verdino, Rohit Bhargava, and Grant McCracken.  Of course, if you want to follow the conversation in the blogosphere, your best bet is via Technorati.

Posted by Rob Fields