My attempt to get ahead… of the year ahead.
I’m a little apprehensive to write this blog post.
Making predictions for the year ahead always involves a lot of guesswork – but not even Hollywood’s most ambitious writers could have imagined how things would turn out in 2020.
So let me temper things by saying, this post is about questions I have right now.
Much of our team’s past year has been spent reimagining and experimenting. We have used our expertise to think about ways to reach, impact and move audiences. But to be honest, we’ve had to react to what’s happening around us.
I like to take time to think about things, and I’m going to spend some serious time over the holidays to consider three big questions for 2021…
How can we be more proactive?
Some of the best programs I’ve ever worked on were ones where we went to the client and said “Have you ever thought about…?”
Because we’ve remodeled our processes to be faster and more expansive in their reach, we’re looking for ways to return to a more proactive state.
To that end, I started reading the book “The Road Less Stupid” by Keith Cunningham when the pandemic first started. I’m grateful for this read because Keith’s no-nonsense approach and transparent candor about his business pitfalls really instilled a sense of confidence and boldness I’d never felt before. When I coupled that with some alone time away from the din of the office, I actually felt a renewed outlook towards work, our team and the direction of our company. Even now, when work is busier than ever and I feel overwhelmed or uncertain about the future, I return to Keith for a re-read and reinforcement of clarity on my path ahead. In short, #TheRoadLessStupid is #awesome.
What are the models?
You know what’s been happening as we’ve been putting on events? Lots and lots of companies have been building technology that rethinks digital and virtual experiences. We’ve been integrating Extended Reality and interactive broadcast experiences into our programming, and I’m starting to see some really interesting approaches.
We have invested in communications systems that allow our team to work together more effectively whether they are in-studio or remote. In fact, we’ve learned that the technology has allowed us to integrate with clients for faster and higher impact communication. We’ve also had success developing tech suggestions and using VR cubes to make at-home presentations look and sound better.
Our hopes are for a vaccine and a “return to normalcy” sometime in the next year.
What does that mean, and what does that look like for events, experiences and communications? I’ve heard several connections talk about adding virtual programming to their mix, allowing them to meet more frequently and include more audiences. As we understand models for engagement, frequency and cost, we’ll better be able to deliver not just a single program, but an entire suite of programs in a year to effect audiences.
I love asking deep-think questions. They get me to push and prod and produce new and helpful ways forward. These are my three deep-thinks for 2021. What are yours?