to 10:30 AM
Stop Listening to Your Customers
197 schedule::attendeesLocation Hilton, Salon C
event::about A common assumption among startup entrepreneurs is that listening to potential customers is the best way to find out whether your product or idea will succeed in the market. Honestly — don't bother. In our ten years of user experience research for startups and big companies alike, one thing we've seen time and again is that it's behavior, not opinions, that tells you whether people want to use your product. The main problem with opinions is self-reporting bias: Opinions are often inconsistent with behaviors or other attitudes, especially when discussing hypotheticals. Remember Clippy, the little character that appeared in Microsoft Word years ago? That little bastard arose, in part, from Microsoft asking users if they wanted help working on their documents — everyone said, “Sure, sounds great.” But once people started actually using it in the real world, they hated it — it might be one of the most hated features in the history of computing. But Microsoft employs hundreds of researchers. So where did they go wrong, and how can you avoid making the same mistake? It's simple. Never ask people what they think of your product or idea. Instead, I'll walk you through the world of researching people, including what you need to ignore customers effectively, just like Apple and 37 Signals. I'll go over examples from our research with Volkswagen, Electronic Arts, and Wikipedia, and show how to use remote research to construct behavioral scenarios and eliminate poor research.
to 12:00 PM
Life After Y Combinator
77 schedule::attendeesLocation Hilton, Salon C
event::about Programs like Y Combinator have garnered much attention in the media. Many of the startups are highlighted and critiqued upon launch, but how do these programs fare over time? What lessons have graduates of Y Combinator learned in a post-Y Combinator world? How do they turn ideas into real businesses?
to 1:30 PM
Why Can't Startups and Advertisers Play Nice?
31 schedule::attendeesLocation Hilton, Salon C
event::about After the SXSW love-fest, startups and advertisers will want to collaborate. Warning: it’s not easy. This panel will break down the cultural and organizational barriers between startups and brands, and we'll discuss a model for mutually beneficial relationships. We’ll address questions like: How should startups pitch a brand? Can startups really stay true to their product roadmap while accommodating the needs of advertisers? How can brands work with startups to generate buzz and stay relevant with consumers?
to 4:30 PM
Collaboration Over Competition
48 schedule::attendeesLocation Hilton, Salon C
event::about The old way of thinking tells small businesses to worry about competitors. Worrying takes the focus off the business. By collaborating with competitors the focus remains on the client and business goals. Take for instance the WordPress theme design company StudioPress. StudioPress recommended other theme design companies to add to the Page.ly power ups page. Because of these actions and more, they've increased their recognition, branded themselves as a benevolent leader, and gained respect within the community. GangPlank, a collaborative workspace, started as a few web firms who decided to share their business secrets. They decided to combine their efforts and work together under the same roof. There was enough room for more so the space was opened up to the public. Now the space has increased from 5k sq ft to 16k sq ft and is funded by the city of Chandler. Learn these tactics and more from a highly qualified panel of experts who live this philosophy daily.
to 6:00 PM
Client Knows Best? How to Sell Unsolicited Ideas
85 schedule::attendeesLocation Hilton, Salon C
event::about So you get the brief, and it’s the “same old same old”. Your client wants a banner campaign…an email blast, a :30 second spot… but you’ve got something better up your sleeve… something more appropriate for them that better meets their needs. Something they’re pining for but they don’t know it yet. How will you sell it to them without making their head spin? How can you make them understand the benefits without losing them in the technological weeds? We’re constantly being thrown for a loop when it comes to great, innovative ideas: “It’s not in the budget.”, “How can we measure its success?”, “We’ve never done anything like that before.” This panel will tell you how to crash through all those barriers with your client and make something really interesting – you may even put it in your portfolio.
to 10:30 AM
Making Money with Wordpress (Without Working at Automattic)
59 schedule::attendeesLocation Hilton, Salon C
event::about WordPress is free! It does astounding things out of the box. But it doesn't do everything. Therein lies the opportunity. Tons of people are making serious money with WordPress, why aren't you? In this session, each panelist will cover a core business opportunity with WordPress: * Customization Services * Design Products & Premium Themes * Premium Plugins * Content Properties We'll share how some of our panelists grossed close to a million in revenue last year from WordPress related design and development services with the help of a small team of talented freelancers or employees. We'll explore the approach that Brandon, the #1 premium theme seller in North America, used to gross $250k in the last year (not bad for one dude). There are no shortages of opportunity. Get insight into how you can be successful from someone in each of these categories who is killing it and making real money (without working for Automattic).
to 12:00 PM
A Media-Based Economy for Detroit's Future
18 schedule::attendeesLocation Hilton, Salon C
Speaker Jeanette Lee, Adriel Thornton, Benjamin Chodoroff, Diana Nucera, Ilana Invincible, Mike Medow
event::about Detroit is what the rest of the world has to look forward to. This panel will explain why there's hope in that statement, when you consider the growing community of citizen journalists, culture producers, technologists and small-business owners who are building a media-based economy at the city's grassroots. Neighborhoods are building mesh wireless networks to expand Internet access through community-owned infrastructure. Hackers teach residents how to build computers from salvaged parts and run them with open source software. Musicians use online distribution to reach global audiences, and party promoters give young people a reason to stay in Detroit. Detroit's emerging media economy is nurtured by its legacy of independent music and culture; by the culture of engineering, building and fixing instilled by our experience with the auto industry; and by the creativity and cooperation that comes out of necessity. For the past four years, the annual Allied Media Conference has helped foster Detroit's media economy, convening thousands of media-makers, activists, artists and technologists in Detroit every summer for a weekend of skill-sharing and strategizing. This panel will offer insights from AMC organizers, and other leading innovators in Detroit's creative culture of art and technology. We invite discussion about what the rest of the world can learn from Detroit and vice versa.
to 1:30 PM
What Would Copyright Look Like If Created Today?
37 schedule::attendeesLocation Hilton, Salon C
event::about Copyright was first created back in 1709 by the Statute of Anne, so it makes sense that anyone alive today takes the existence of it for granted. However, the technological landscape has changed greatly in the 300 years since copyright was created, and as a result, some laws and rules concerning copyright are starting to feel a bit draconian. So, what if we were able to craft copyright laws today, without the existing baggage of 300 year-old laws? What would they look like? How would we encourage creation of new content in this world?
to 4:30 PM
Transmedia: Transmonetisation -- Getting Rights and Making Money
23 schedule::attendeesLocation Hilton, Salon C
event::about Transmedia is here, and it's here to stay. More and more owners are looking to transmedia as a way of extending the reach of their content. We will explore the current landscape and economics within transmedia but also propose new business models for the monetisation of transmedia content. The speakers are the first true transmedia lawyers in the UK. They have impeccable credentials to speak about all aspects of deal-making in this space. The first part of the presentation will focus on rights and money and include a discussion of which rights are required to launch a transmedia campaign; who should have an interest in those rights; how should those interests be regulated and how to control the transmedia process in a split rights world. The second part will consider the the ways in which these rights can be monetised; the current and new economic models for monetising these rights and what transmedia deal-making will look like in the future. We will then close by looking at transmedia for all - how accessible are these strategies to producers and content owners. Creating a compelling content proposition is critical to the success of a transmedia project but if content owners can walk a little faster and stand a little taller they have an opportunity to lead the way, and become stakeholders in the future of transmedia exploitation.
to 6:00 PM
Transmedia Artists Guild: New Media Needs New Advocacy
16 schedule::attendeesLocation Hilton, Salon C
event::about Transmedia is a big buzzword in entertainment. Most of the conversation around transmedia has been focused on large media corporations with major franchises to advertise. But companies don't make transmedia - people do. At last year's SXSW a group of these people -- transmedia, ARG and net-native story designers -- convened to discuss the challenges of making a living and thriving in this landscape. The bitch session spurred a call to action, and the plans were laid for a new advocacy organization to serve individual producers and artists working in this still-hazily defined world -- the Transmedia Artists Guild. TAG seeks to fulfill needs that are currently being overlooked by the established creative guilds and advocacy organizations, including: 1) Providing a community for professional practitioners; 2) Advancing clear definitions of what transmedia creators do; 3) Fostering a culture of credit in the transmedia space and 4) Aiding companies in need of transmedia talent in finding professional practitioners.
to 10:30 AM
Unbelievable eCommerce: Increase Sales By 10000%
49 schedule::attendeesLocation Hilton, Salon C
Speaker Paul Boag
event::about Many believe the secret to a successful ecommerce site is to copy Amazon. However, that rarely works. Your website is not Amazon. Instead it has a unique offering that caters to a specific audience. Once you realise that you can achieve unbelievable things. In his talk Paul explains how he took one ecommerce website from relatively successful beginnings to unbelievable heights. In only 5 years he and the team at Headscape increased sales on the site by a staggering 10,000%. What makes the story even more unbelievable is that the average customer is over 80 years old! This single example will act as a case study that guides you towards better understanding your audience and growing your online sales significantly.
to 12:00 PM
The Hero Inside: Invisible Customer Support
17 schedule::attendeesLocation Hilton, Salon C
event::about In a customer support world, changing the mind set from successful support calls to measuring “time to happy” can be an empowering and innovative proposition. Proactive support solutions often times go unnoticed as potential issues are fixed long before customers are aware of the issue. An effortless support experience ensures that customers are free to reach their full potential without the hassle of continually picking up the phone. This session is sponsored by Microsoft.
to 1:30 PM
Authentication Fails = ID Thieves Succeed. What's Next?
14 schedule::attendeesLocation Hilton, Salon C
Speaker Alex Davis
event::about How does a retailer, bank or any business know they’re interacting with you & not an imposter? Consumers need thoughtful, scalable & user-friendly authentication solutions to stop ID theft & protect reputations & assets. We’ll discuss ID theft & authentication, lessons learned addressing these problems, & how technology + new approaches are paving the way forward. ID fraud & authentication are discussed together because the challenges they create, when one fails & the other succeeds, are endless. ID theft is caused by a failure of authentication & is a concern for ANY industry that handles valuable assets – like money, credit cards, SSN, health records, or World of Warcraft characters. ID theft is commonly talked about & feared, but not always understood. We’ll discuss what it means & how it’s executed. We’ll also share ID theft examples, from mundane to insane & prove that the systems that allow this to happen are clearly broken. When it comes to authentication, a thief can convince someone that they are you, but a thief cannot convince you that he is you – the heart of why consumer participation & strong authentication are so important. When consumers are allowed to participate in transactions, identity theft stops. Architects, engineers & companies have approached authentication in a variety of ways. We’ll go through technical examples & lessons learned from these schemes & show that challenges still exist. We’ll then discuss current innovations & the path forward.
to 4:30 PM
Kiosks, Mobile and the Evolving Retail Experience
27 schedule::attendeesLocation Hilton, Salon C
event::about New opportunities for sophisticated in-store and digital interactive experiences are fundamentally changing the way retail stores connect with their customers. These changes – from interactive kiosks, sophisticated mobile devices, digital & interactive vending machines, and the wireless delivery of software - are creating opportunities for brands and marketers to connect and interact with their customers more richly. We will share how are clients are leveraging these tools, and our vision of where it is all going.
to 10:30 AM
Wikipedia: A Banner Year for Online Fundraising
Location Hilton, Salon C
Location Hilton, Salon C
event::about Hear the story of Wikipedia's groundbreaking 2010 fundraiser, and learn how the 5th largest website in the world doubled their income with one simple request: "Please Read A Personal Appeal from Wikipedia Founder Jimmy Wales." Our focus will be on fundraising banners, appeal copy, and lessons from months of testing, but we also welcome your ideas for 2011.
to 12:00 PM
Indie Success: Caching in on Collaboration
26 schedule::attendeesLocation Hilton, Salon C
event::about Since the web began we've been talking about artists having a career without a label and going directly to fans. We finally have examples of this working, so what does it look like? SXSW Veteran Heather Gold sits down with successful collaborating indie artists including: Allee Willis (September, Boogie Wonderland, The Colour Purple, Theme from Friends over 50 million albums sold), Mary Jo Pehl (Mystery Science Theatre 3000, RIfftrax, NPR) and Kenyatta Cheese (Know Your Meme, Rocketboom) The Net links almost every form of artistic making, so it makes sense that we're in an era of increasing collaboration and creation in many forms. We’ll find out how limitations and openness serve them in an era of "personal brands" We'll find out how they deal with rights, friendship and creating the best space in which to collaborate. We’ll also dig into their collaborative process in making social experiences, music, video and comedy and find out how they've succeeded creatively and in every other way.
to 1:30 PM
35 schedule::attendeesLocation Hilton, Salon C
event::about Work is getting flatter. There’s no central server dishing out orders. It’s a peer-to-peer, co-evolving world. The team that flocks together, rocks together. The future of work is not about dull routine, it’s about being more human. It’s about curiosity, exploration, flexibility and imagination. Gamestorming is for people who want to design the future, to change the world, to make, break and innovate. It's a kind of Jedi-judo for inventors, explorers and change agents who want to engage the swarm, surf the infosphere and fan the creative hive to an excited state. Gamestorming is a practice made of people, paper and passion. The enabling technologies are sticky notes, whiteboards, index cards, loose rules and fast action. Gamestorming is a mashup of game principles, game mechanics and work. It’s about weaving energy and fast-feedback loops into your work, into your meetings with co-workers, into your design and development activities. Gamestorming is the future of work. Our panel of Gamestorming Jedi will infect you with the Gamestorming virus, so you can carry it back with you and unleash the contagion to the other nodes in your network. There is no antidote.
to 4:30 PM
Death of the Demo; Rise of Branded Tutorial
32 schedule::attendeesLocation Hilton, Salon C
Speaker Joshua Rosenbaum
event::about Since the beginning of man, different permutations of the “Instruction Manual” have ridden as passenger in the sidecar of technology’s motorcycle. And like technology, the format of the instruction manual has evolved, but is the “science” behind them keeping up? Video demos may be the status quo across today’s interverse, BUT… The day of the 40-minute-long, boring video demo is over. Short, entertaining video tutorials are winning the attention and appreciation of a socially networked audience eager to pass along a link to something they find entertaining and useful. Smart brands are realizing the opportunity to create and use video tutorials as purveyors of brand culture. Injecting humor, style, and creative storytelling into an instructional tutorial not only can help grab and keep an audience’s attention, but may encourage the audience to actively promote the content to others purely based on its creativity or experiential value. Demos are dead. Fun, creative tutorials not only teach, but also promote. The branded tutorial is rapidly becoming the new, and necessary standard.
to 6:00 PM
Cryobank.com Connecting Your Enterprise to the Web
1 schedule::attendeesLocation Hilton, Salon C
event::about Think selling products online is hard? Try selling genetic material on the web. California Cryobank, the world's largest sperm bank, did just that. With the help of ISITE Design and Western Computers, California Cryobank became the first cryogenics company to sell vials online. Through thoughtful systems integration and an ingenious marketing Cryobank.com's donor catalog has become wildly popular. Features like Celebrity Look-a-Likes have been featured on the Today Show and The Colbert Report. In this panel we will talk about the pitfalls and advantages to selling your unique product online.