Big thanks to our fantastic panellists:
- Michael Nutley, Editor-in-Chief, New Media Age – chair
- Andy Bell, Founder & Creative Director, Mint Digital
- Arvind Ethan David, Founder & Producer, Slingshot Studios
- Helen Keegan, Founder & Managing Director, Beep Marketing
- Gity Monsef, Founder, Glassloves
The digital heroes nominated by the panel included: Lovefilm, HBO, IFC, C4 Education, Alex Tew of Million Dollar Home Page, Ben Keane and Mark James of Tribe Wanted, Last fm, SoundCloud, Tunecall (to be launched) and, apparently…Soulja Boy (who was, it was reluctantly agreed by everyone, as successful as he might be irritating).
There was plenty of talk around the nature of creativity and the fact that anyone can get their creative work out there these days, no need for gatekeepers.
We still do drafts of our work (music, writing etc), but we do them online, in public. Then we correct them – and our communities correct them – as we go along. (This blog is just one such example.)
It strikes me that the same is true for entrepreneurs. Who was it who said if you’ve got a mobile phone in Africa, you’ve got a business? Well the same is true everywhere.
Today, anyone with an idea and the right amount of willpower can be an entrepreneur. Absolutely no cash needed to get things going. You put your idea online and bingo, if it’s truly ‘good’ (ie, what the market wants at the time, as Helen Keegan succinctly puts it), then there’s no real reason why the idea shouldn’t take off.
As Russell Davies said (below), business doesn’t have to separate strategy from execution any more.
And as with so many other sectors, the business world itself seems to be splitting into a billion tiny atoms to accommodate these changes.
What will the businesses of the future look like?
One audience member pointed out that the brave new start-ups of today could very easily become the News Corps of tomorrow. I can see his point – but somehow I’m hoping for something different.