Salt Lake City, Utah – Adobe is hosting its 11th annual Digital Marketing Summit, and Arianna Huffington is about to take the stage in front of 4,000+ attendees to discuss her take on “New Media” and discuss the latest online and social media trends turning the balance of power away from media giants and in the hands of consumers.
Arianna kicked off the keynote with several laughs from the crowd, but as she gets down to serious business, I’ll do my best to follow along and give key takeaways but I’m no pro live-blogger, so here we go:
- We really need to watch how social media (and all media) for that matter can be used to distract us rather than connect us.
- As a platform, the key is starting conversations around any given topic, and to date, the huff post has over 140 million comments are pre-moderated with technology and 24/7 moderators.
- The Internet is coming of age. There is a convergence between the things we value in our real lives and our online lives. Our lives are now more curated. We went from the search for information to a deeper search for meaning. If you want to tap into where the Zeitgeist is going, you need to be ahead of the game as a brand, to stay strong.
- The snake in the digital garden is that we are getting hyper connected. The paradox that we need to address, if we don’t learn to unplug, to disconnect, we are COOKED. (Amen Arianna!)
- Stop charging your devices by your bed! Read the sleep section on the Huff post for various studies on why being too connected is bad for your health.
- Eliminate the excuses that keep you from disconnecting. How do we reconnect with wisdom?
(Ok, Arianna just suggested that we might have a conference like this somewhere someday without Wi-Fi, so that we can really connect intellectually – that may not actually happen, or marketers heads will explode.)
Important For The Future Of Marketing: How Causes Can Be Used By Brands
Brands can sponsor a worthy cause for an entire year on Huff Post, there’s the reminder that this brand’s core value is about doing good, and can be trusted, it’s not just about the bottom line.
The “Good News” section has been a huge success at Huff Post – it’s a responsibility of the media to put a spotlight on the good that is being done around the world, with passion and ingenuity.
The way technology is being used to connect people and do good is exciting.
(so Arianna is diverging into famous nappers.. not really following that.. so I might take a little snooze… be back in a minute… )
Ultimately life is meant to be lived in a way that produces results and joy. It’s very difficult to do that if you go through the day exhausted, and it’s difficult to see the icebergs before they hit the Titanic. (+1 for a reference to the 100 year anniversary coming up)
If we can accept our own vulnerability as marketers and publishers we are going be better off in the long run.
In the brave new world, being involved on social conversations as a brand will bring authenticity – we should learn to take on all the challenges we’re faced with a new gratitude for technology.
Q&A Time With Adobe Exec Brad Rencher
- Arianna is first obsessed with Brad’s fancy shoes, now a part of his ‘digital self’.
- Arianna is now talking about their approach to headlines at HuffPo – it’s to give you an attitude off the bat before you even start reading.
- Sometimes the headline or most important point of the story is buried way down in the content.
We’re constantly thinking about how to engage readers in different ways. An upcoming road show is based on worthy causes and buzz built by core readerships.
Stephen Fry has more influence than Obama or Lady Gaga, even though he only has 4million followers (that’s like 20 million less than Ms. Germanotta, stupid auto-follow bots don’t really do much to RT and boost influence, now do they? )
Ah good question by Brad: how does being a woman in a male dominated industry affect the way you lead the HuffPo.
(basically, it comes down to having snacks in office, says Arianna… not just because she’s a woman but she’s greek and food every 20 mins is critical). But seriously, personal interaction is really important to how she runs the business – and thinks that’s possible whether you’re a small business or large enterprise.
Arianna’s biggest hope is that we as a society can help social entrepreneurs scale what they are doing.
She closes by distributing her email address to the 4,000+ attendees, encouraging them to send all their blog content, on any subject, as the HuffPo would love to have them.