#DSUM14 – Digital Summit 2014

This week I was fortunate to attend the 2014 Digital Summit here in Atlanta. It was a great time, despite David Pogue and Steve Wozniak (the two main Keynotes) being unable to attend. A lot of people were pretty pissed; I was bummed for sure that I didn’t get to see The Woz speak…Stupid delayed flights, oh well. But honestly, Roy Sekoff the co-founder and President of HuffPost Live blew me away during his presentation so much that I forgot about the other missed opportunities. Brilliant and inspiring speaker.

Saw lots of friends over the two days, and met tons of new people. In my opinion, the networking at events like this covers the hefty entrance price by itself. I’ve added some of the pictures below that I took at the event so you can get a better feel for the experience.

As for the takeaways, here’s some notes I took:

  • Nike utilizes trend tracking and data analytics on social networks (Twitter specifically) to see when people are mentioning “running,” for example. They then leverage that information to curate and plan posts specific to those time periods.
  • Television programs, like the Grammy’s or the Super Bowl, give you a great opportunity to mass-blast real time content. Today we see brands sponsoring instant replay video highlights of big sporting events.
  • Twitter’s New World –> there are 3 types of moments: Live moments, Campaign moments, and Everyday moments
  • When building a community –> transparency leads to trust which leads to community. Default to transparency!
  • Kim Gnatt from Coca Cola – consumers are in the driver’s seat now. Content must be reactive and personalized, along with proactive listening practices.
  • Video thumbnails in an email have the ability to increase your click thru rates by 30%
  • Try to create 10 pieces of (vide0) content per year, and repurpose that content 4X for a total of 40 pieces of content you can use every year! Make the content consistent, as to optimize your SEO presence with Google.
  • What’s the most annoying and overused question aimed at a social marketer? “What’s the ROI of social?” To that, Adam Naide had a great response, “What’s the ROI of YOU?!”


Above is the lobby and check-in area of the Cobb Energy Centre. Sponsor companies lined the walls on either side, with the typical t-shirt and office supply swag. SwagChimp, a promotions company, had the best giveaway… A little rubber triangle to stand your phone on a desk. This lobby is also where the welcome and finale receptions were held. The entrance to the main theater is directly to the left in this image.


This picture is taken from the balcony level of the main theater. This was the opening presentation featuring Susan Bennett, also known as Siri. The interview was complete with dirty audience requests in a Siri voice. Very entertaining, and great to hear she’s loving life in Atlanta!


This picture is from the back of the theater during Kevin Pollak‘s comedy show. It was the most crowded the main theater was all day. One of the highlights of the two days, for sure.


This is from Adam Naide’s Social Media Strategy presentation. Adam is the social media leader at Cox Communications. I’ve seen him speak many times now, and have loved all the discussions we’ve had. Working in social media as a cable provider is fascinating, and has many perks. He talked about World Cup, so it’s automatically my favorite presentation of the day. Even though his Prezi presentation took about 15 minutes to set up, Adam rocked it acapella and kept everybody in their seats. Impressive.

steffan and adam

You know we had to get a picture at the step and repeat.

nickayres wallofawesome

This picture is from Nick Ayres‘ presentation, an IHG social leader. I loved the idea of a #WallOfAwesome. Think we’ll be stealing this concept at Object 9.


Here’s Roy Sekoff doing his thing. Very interesting to learn about HuffPost Live, and the way he looks at journalism. Anybody with an opinion that they can share and back up has the ability to be an influential journalist today. I was entertained to say the least.


This picture is from Ryan Oliver‘s Twitter presentation. Very insightful, and exciting to hear him hint at the developments Twitter are working on for these big brands!

Digital Summit 2014

And finally, the #ASKDSUM panel concluded the two day presentations. Great to see Adam LaHaie make his way into a panel this year, good job man! Also, my friend Sonja spoke on this panel — her second of the day!

Overall the Digital Summit wasn’t anything ground breaking, but was definitely worth attending. Good content and great people. Shout out to all the people I saw and met there, including: Adam Naide, Jen Osbon, the STIR Marketing team, Jason Maldonado, Aileen Cole, Josh Martin, Joe Koufman, Rob Kischuk, Jason Hoch, Jessica Lucia, Gregg Khedouri, and MJ Schindler!

(I’ve linked everybody’s Twitter profiles if you’re interested in connecting with them)

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