A young colleague recently asked me,”Why do you define yourself as a digital marketer? I don’t categorize marketing into digital and non-digital.” It got me thinking.
She has a point. Millennial talent such as hers entering the market does not and will not differentiate or compartmentalize marketing the way we do. Digital, however we define it, has revolutionized both marketing communications and business. Disciplines are bleeding into each other. Design agencies are creating business models. PR agencies are managing social. Social agencies are working on defining brand. Content companies are making ads. It’s confusing, exhausting and exhilarating.
However, even as these disciplines bleed into one another, there will be something new on the horizon, a path unexplored, uncharted – the new “digital.” So I suppose it is not about digital as it exists right now, it is about digital as it will exist, or simply put, it is about the future. Our skill-sets have primed us to identify and work with stuff that’s on the fringes. Stuff that doesn’t really make a whole lot of sense even to us right now.
As this discourse has evolved, so has my interpretation of what it means to be a digital strategist. I wanted to share some recent thinking by others around the future because this is the kind of stimulus that should inform our thinking, evolve our profession and continue to guarantee us a seat at the table with the planners, consultants and magicians. I’ll provide the links, you connect the dots.
Two new appointments at Silicon Valley’s top Venture funds offer signs to the next dialogue in technology
John Meada leaves RISD for Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers
Balaji Sreenivasan joins Andreessen Horowitz as General Partner
As the venture firm’s first design partner, Maeda’s remit will be to infuse a design-led DNA into portfolio companies. At Andressen Horowitz, 33 year old entrepreneur, academic and youngest Partner at the firm, Balaji will be focusing on decoding how software will reorganize and revolutionize complex, regulated spaces such as mobile money, healthcare etc. It will be interesting to see how this influences the Valley and also the investments coming out of these firms.
Fascinating fact: Geodesic distance, a new metric that maps states of mind: ”The separation of our bodies is still best characterized by the geographical distance between points on the surface of the earth, the distance between our minds is increasingly characterized by a completely different metric: the geodesic distance, the number of degrees of separation between two nodes in a social network.”
Vaclav Smil, the man that Bill Gates think you should absolutely be reading, believes owning manufacturing is the way to prosperity for USA.
“In every society, manufacturing builds the lower middle class. If you give up manufacturing, you end up with haves and have-nots and you get social polarization. The whole middle class sinks.”
A glimpse into the changing family structures and concept in the world’s most powerful country.
“Families are becoming more socially egalitarian over all, even as economic disparities widen. Families are more ethnically, racially, religiously and stylistically diverse than half a generation ago – than even half a year ago.”
One man’s attempt to debunk the hype around MOOC’s around a shocking data point: less than 10% of people that sign up for a class actually finish it
“Not all of those people received a passing grade either, meaning that for every 100 pupils who enrolled in a free course, something like five actually learned the topic. If this was an education revolution, it was a disturbingly uneven one.”