March 12, 2009

Yes we're different, get over it

Inmamartinez Today's Plugg conference is in full swing. While the quality of the presentations has been mixed so far, there are some very interesting ideas and viewpoints coming out of the conference. One example of such 'food for thought' came from Inmaculada Martinez at Stradbroke Advisors, a Digital Media Strategist & Venture Capital Investor. She skipped right through the traditional notions of Europeans as great designers and apt multiculturalists and went for the weaker points of 'our' entrepreneurs. One of them is marketing: "We're great inventors but terrible marketeers". As if anyone needed proof of that, she showed the press release issued by CERN in 1993 announcing the birth of HTML. This great European invention was marketed on a dull A4 signed by... the finance department.

But there's hope, of course there is. Inma talked to us about Wreck A Movie, a Finnish site started by a couple of animators that is now one of the most important sources for crowdsourced movies. The lesson behind that? Be humble, know what you can and can't and motivate people to join you. And be cheeky, even if you're not a Brit. Don' t take yourself too seriously, break all the rules and do what you feel is right. One example here is Steal This Film, a British documentary on copyright that turned to The Pirate Bay for distribution. Not illegally or without being paid for it, but fully funded by donations. It worked out so well that each and every downloader ended up paying 15 dollars for the movie.

One last example of how the stigma can be shaken off: Scene Systems, a UK company that was the darling of all major US news networks when they made a stunning animation showing a US Airways flight crash landing in the Hudson. Inma's message is clear: stop beating yourself for being from the 'old continent'. Just go out and be an entrepreneur, be yourself, be resourceful and have fun. But first and foremost: start thinking of marketing, right at the creation of your company - even before you have a product ready. Also, focus on those products, not just on the R&D behind it.

Raphael Cockx


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

It agree, this rather good idea is necessary just by the way

The comments to this entry are closed.