Dispatches from nextmedia

I spent a couple interesting days at NextMEDIA Toronto, an annual Digital Conference bringing together top professionals from the Digital Space, focusing on Advertising in the Digital Space (Day 1) and Content (Day 2.)  Funny enough, Advertising Day was the least interesting of the two.

From my perspective as a Director, Digital Solutions with Media Experts, many of the conversations taking place concerning digital advertising while interesting, are already part of our daily experience. A few brave stands were taken by Neil Sweeney, President & CEO of Juice Mobile who insinuated that mobile apps will eventually lose ground to mobile browsing. He did caveat that many brands/publishers jumped on the bandwagon and went to market with an app without considering the long term commitment of development and management of the software. Many won’t have the bandwidth to keep these apps viable. 


Ray Sharma, Founder and CEO of XMG Studios Inc, likened console games to the cinema experience of gaming. People will continue to go to theatres on occasion and pay the big bucks for the experience but, in the main, they will be home happily watching their videos from their couch. He believes in-app gaming is the way of the future.

Ray Schmalz, President of Digital Extremes, countered that application gaming has socialized people into believing that their value is $0.99 per download. How can an industry evolve on chump change and no long term monetization model? Sharma alluded to 100 different ways to monetize gaming but the audience couldn’t make out more than a handful of pricing structures that we didn’t already know about.

So, here’s what I took away from Day One:

In 2013, if you don’t have a mobile site you are deliberately leaving yourself open to be outfoxed by your competition. But don’t just go build an app – that doesn’t make you mobile, that makes you a software company.

Application gaming has socialized people to believe a gaming experience is worth $0.99, not a great long term pricing strategy. Console gaming has a higher price of entry, but they taught people to set aside time to enjoy a gaming experience, no one plans to play 2 hours of Angry birds after dinner.

Tomorrow I’ll review Day Two and the big takeways from the changing landscape of commerce, culture and content.