Digital Media Summit is Canada’s social media and interactive marketing conference held annually in conjunction with Canadian Music Week.
Canadian Music Week (CMW) gathers creators from across the world to showcase their talents to eager audiences for five jam-packed days. "Creators" because the festival has evolved from a hub for musicians to include a comedy and film festival. But it's also an industry event where entertainment and business professionals are not only looking for the next big thing, but tips on how to make sure their discovery doesn't get lost in the noise. Enter the Digital Media Summit. Two days of back-to-back presentations and discussions by renowned experts in their field, exploring best practices, trends and the future of promotion.
This year, programmers did an excellent job in booking engaging, relevant and prominent speakers to impart their wisdom to the hundreds in attendance. Representatives from companies such as Google, Microsoft, Facebook, LinkedIn and YouTube, and authors whose works include Wikinomics and Trust Me I'm Lying: Confessions of a Media Manipulator populated the schedule.
The keynote speakers were outstanding, as well as inspiring. On day one, Erik Qualman set the tone for the event with a witty presentation centred on “word-of-mouth on steroids,” a.k.a. Socialnomics. And his YouTube video, "Social Media Saves Valentine's Day", has undoubtedly been shared numerous times since the summit. Cindy Gallop commanded the audience's attention, demanding structural redesign to fit the new world order. Speaking frankly about pornography and the gender gap, must-remember sound bites flowed from her lips for a full 60 minutes.
The next day, Don Tapscott (author of Macrowikinomics) proved day two would be equally captivating. Seamlessly plugging the collection of books he's written over the last couple of decades, he conveyed the results of years of research, revealing trends and necessary actions. Jason Falls drew the crowd in with a fun and informative wakeup call titled, "Brand vacuum – Why nobody cares about your silly brand… And what to do about it." Combining amusing examples and Southern charm, he comfortably hosted what could be defined as a "laugh and learn."
Throughout the conference, "veterans" shared their on-the-job experiences. Stephanie Wilson Chapin from CTV News provided the perspective of the newsroom in a panel discussion about real time social media engagement. Kenny Norton, digital marketing manager at The Score, advocated the importance of dedicating resources to the right social network(s) for your brand. Sandy Marshall from Second City showed how the same methods used to engage improv audiences could be transferred to business-to-customer relations. And Dennis Yu, CEO of Blitzmetrics, divulged some fascinating but disturbing information about how to gather data about your Facebook fans.
Beginner, intermediate or experienced, the event was useful from beginning to end thanks to an all-star lineup of awesome speakers. Cant’ wait till #DMS2014 next year!