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Digital Summit 2016: The Digital Nomad Marketing Strategy


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When you bet on platforms or set up property, you miss where human customer behavior could move. When you crunch too much data, you miss the bits of information that really help you determine how to execute a truly unique and successful business strategy.

While the world is over-inundated with discussions on using platforms like search, social, messaging, email, out of home channels, the digital nomad marketer doesn’t see siloed platforms but a holistic world of opportunity and experiences in which to communicate.

By thinking about how people live and behave in the world is the starting point of all modern marketing strategy and a total inversion from how marketing has been taught and executed for the last 50 years.

Geoffrey Colon works at the intersection of marketing, tech, and popular culture. Data punk, DJ, podcaster, and author, Geoffrey is a communications designer at Microsoft, where he leads a team of disruptive marketers to develop creative and analytical strategies for the company’s search advertising business. Previously he was vice president of digital strategy at Ogilvy & Mather, digital communities supervisor at 360i, and social media specialist at Bond Strategy and Influence. He has written for The Futurist, Advertising Age, and Fast Company, and been quoted in the Wall Street Journal, Billboard Magazine, Advertising Age, Los Angeles Times, and on NPR. Visit Geoffrey Colon at or follow him on Twitter @djgeoffe


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Digital Summit 2016: The Digital Nomad Marketing Strategy

  1. 1. Geoffrey Colon, Communications Designer, Microsoft The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  2. 2. Presented by Geoffrey Colon Author of Disruptive Marketing 2The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  3. 3. For much of the history of the world we lived in communal yet nomadic fashion. We went where we could find or cultivate food… @djgeoffe
  4. 4. During the Agricultural Age, most people were merchants, craftspeople, farmers, or farm workers. Creative ideas and skill were rewarded as more people would buy from you if your product was made better. Being entrepreneurial was important because most people worked for themselves. 4The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  5. 5. Then civilization moved from the agricultural age to the industrial age. People migrated to where they could find work… @djgeoffe @djgeoffe
  6. 6. During the Industrial Age, few people worked for themselves due to the large capital required to operate a factory or business operation. During this era most people worked in factories. Creative thoughts were frowned upon in favor of scale and efficiency. Only the wealthy had capital to own businesses. 6The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  7. 7. Then civilization once again faced a cataclysmic shift from industrial age to information age. People migrated to the internet where information, knowledge and connections were in abundance… @djgeoffe
  8. 8. During the Information Age, people began to migrate back to an era where many worked for themselves but most still relied heavily on scarce capital due to the large resources required to operate a technical business. Cognitive capital was the main commodity but was owned by the corporation. Venture capitalists had the most to benefit in this age. 8The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  9. 9. We now are at a new chasm we are crossing and one that you need to understand in order to connect with people, customers, and influencers during the shift from the information age to a new creative age… @djgeoffe
  10. 10. During the Creative Age, people can work anywhere and for themselves due to the advent of cloud computing. Tools are in abundance. Creativity and imagination are the new commodities. Businesses can crop up in days, not years. Anyone can own a business. Anything you imagine is no longer a wasted thought. The world is moving toward a meritocracy. Purpose, potential and inspiration are the new goals. 10The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  11. 11. 11The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  12. 12. You and me. We or Us all have come full circle to live in a new normal once again. 12 @djgeoffe
  13. 13. We live in public. We live in the physical world. We live in the digital world. We live anywhere and everywhere. We can do everything and anything we IMAGINE. 13The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  14. 14. While we enter this new era, we also have been changing our outlooks and habits due to technology… 14 @djgeoffe
  15. 15. Everything today is temporary. Nothing is permanent. 15The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  16. 16. Home ownership is at an all time low of 64% More than 50% of urbanites do NOT own a car The majority of Millennials do NOT pay for cable TV The majority of people do NOT purchase music 45% of Americans pirate entertainment content 0% pay to use services like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram Even Windows 10 is free* 16 The Digital Nomad Strategy – Source: *Upgrade ends July 29, 2016 unless you use assistive technologies – more info at @djgeoffe
  17. 17. If this trend continues, we may be an ownerless society in the next 20 years. Especially with new behaviors yet to be established or adopted. 17 @djgeoffe
  18. 18. What does this new behavior mean for analyzing how we will market using the web for the next 20 years? 18 @djgeoffe
  19. 19. For much of our lives we’ve been told the following: • Establish a site (Buy a Home) vs. Be where customers are online (Rent in order to move) • Build community (Build Your Skills) vs. Build network (Build Your Ideas) • Earn followers (Earn Income) vs. Earn reputation (Earn Word of Mouth) • Drive Traffic (Visitors) vs. Drive Engagement (Build Influence) • Build Empire (Dominate) vs. Build Collapsible Systems By Design (Disrupt Yourself) 19 The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  20. 20. But that was in a world with scarce solutions and scarce businesses inhabiting the web. It was also in a desktop-oriented world where many people used just a few tools like this: 20The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  21. 21. 21The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  22. 22. Similar to how automation transformed past industries, the ability to find information in new ways is in abundance due to the overpopulation of people on the internet. 22The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  23. 23. In a nomadic approach, being where your customers are but also using what you feel most comfortable with to help nourish customer relationships helps foster learnings. 23The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  24. 24. There is no one proper tool to use in communications in the 21st Century. Whatever does the job is the best tool. It’s measuring the output based on the feelings of people toward you and your product, organization or service. 24 @djgeoffe
  25. 25. If these still work for you based on who your audience is, then by all means use them! How we manipulate media to foster connection is the new modern art of the 21st Century 25The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  26. 26. A “Guru” told me I was doing it wrong for my own website. But am I? Who wants to visit my site as an author when they can converse with me in real time? 26 @djgeoffe
  27. 27. 27The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  28. 28. 28The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  29. 29. 29The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  30. 30. Contact forms are the new snail mail. Messenger apps are what all savvy businesses are designing experiences around because it truly helps in both our “real time” and “on-demand” world… 30The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  31. 31. The shift from open social platforms to messenger apps is a prime example of nomadic behavior in action. 31 @djgeoffe
  32. 32. Similar to how the agricultural age ceded to the industrial age which ceded to the information age which is now ceding to the creative age, “digital marketing” is as antiquated as the industrial era. 32 @djgeoffe
  33. 33. Ask yourself. Are you an expert? 33The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  34. 34. Are you a guru? 34The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  35. 35. Many forms of expertise and skills ultimately become outmoded and outdated due to technical advancements and automation. 35The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  36. 36. 36The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  37. 37. I know what you’re thinking, but that will only affect certain jobs, I’ll be fine… 37 @djgeoffe
  38. 38. 38The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  39. 39. 39The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  40. 40. 40The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  41. 41. But this isn’t a presentation about fear. It’s about how to adapt and be empowered in a world that is changing by the millisecond. 41 @djgeoffe
  42. 42. In order to understand the new normal we live in, let’s explain this new world via five quotes: 42 @djgeoffe
  43. 43. “Get into the habit of imagining an alternate scenario. By posing such ‘imagine if’ questions…we can distance ourselves from the frames, cues, anchors and rhetoric that might be affecting us.” – Noreena Hertz 43 @djgeoffe
  44. 44. “Business has only two functions – marketing and innovation.” – Milan Kundera 44 @djgeoffe
  45. 45. “The most disruptive thing in the market is not technology, but rather the customer.” – Tiffani Bova, Salesforce 45 @djgeoffe
  46. 46. “Species go extinct because there are historical constraints built into a given body or a given design.” – Kevin Kelly 46 @djgeoffe
  47. 47. “The true scarce commodity is increasingly human attention.” – Satya Nadella, CEO, Microsoft 47 @djgeoffe
  48. 48. Modern Marketers need to understand technology, platforms, emerging media, analytics, holistic decision-making journeys and… 48 @djgeoffe
  49. 49. …more importantly something more complex than all of that combined. What is more complex than all of those things? 49 @djgeoffe
  50. 50. 50 @djgeoffe
  51. 51. Aspire and live with an attitude like my four- year-old daughter Tillie who wants to be both a unicorn and a scientist when she grows up…(because imagination is our true north and customers are more sophisticated than companies)
  52. 52. Questions to Ask Yourself Before Marketing Anything in the Here and Now 52The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  53. 53. What Culturally and Ethically Matters to Your Customers? Question 1: 53The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  54. 54. Where Do Your Customers or Potential Customers Live Both Online and Offline? Question 2: 54The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  55. 55. Are Your Customers Producers? Question 3: 55The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  56. 56. In Aggregate, are Those Customers Creating Qualitative Conversations That Tie Into Your Company Vision, Culture and Ethics and Go Beyond Product? Question 4: 56The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  57. 57. Four Goals for the Nomadic Strategy: • Communications Design that meets the demand of an emerging market with a different vision of the world • Reshaping the world so that it meets the ethical narratives of people • Platform agnostic • Conversation is the barometer Creative Disruption in the Anti-Organization Age 57The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  58. 58. Four Metrics to Measure 58The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  59. 59. How do you check your pulse? Your heartbeat right? The same is true now in business. • Net Promoter Score The Four Metrics to Measure in a Nomadic Strategy 59The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  60. 60. How do you check what people are saying? Social listening that can check for: • Qualitative Sentiment The Four Metrics to Measure in a Nomadic Strategy 60The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  61. 61. Conversion may help with revenue but leave that for a separate KPI. For predictive analysis around nomadic behavior track: • Brand/Product Mentions and Where Those Mentions Occur The Four Metrics to Measure in a Nomadic Strategy 61The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  62. 62. Finally, in order to get a good idea of what will move your audience in the future in terms of content, track: • Interests • Job Titles • Geography The Four Metrics to Measure in a Nomadic Strategy 62The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  63. 63. 1. Net Promoter Score – Why? Gives indicators if people will recommend your products to others (social by design) 2. Qualitative Sentiment – Why? It’s not the amount of people saying things, but what they are saying. Besides, you only need 120 connections* to create a word of mouth business Four Metrics to Measure 63 The Digital Nomad Strategy - *Based on research by British Anthropologist Robin Dunbar who noted that 120 connections were the most any person or company could realistically manage and know who those people. Software will scale this number of course.
  64. 64. 3. Brand/Product Mentions – Why? Makes sense to know where these are taking place regardless of what people are actually saying. This helps you map where to ultimately be rather than hedging bets on “platform blindness.” 4. Interests – Why? Unlike CTRs and conversion rates, people data will help with personalization in a people- centric fueled future where conversation is the platform. Four Metrics to Measure 64The Digital Nomad Strategy
  65. 65. What mistake did I make in this video? Mistakes of Conventional Marketers 65The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  66. 66. Socialcam isn’t a dominant platform but the behavior it was capturing now is: • Video Messaging!!! • Live video streaming!!! • Video remixing!!! Study Behavior, Not Platforms… 66The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  67. 67. Netnography: The freely expressed opinion of individuals on the social web provides researchers with data coming from thousands of individuals behaving freely. It also allows researchers to keep record of these interactions, quantify changes over time, and perform insightful analysis using a variety of tools and methods. Word of the Century… 67The Digital Nomad Strategy @djgeoffe
  68. 68. What you have learned today will be irrelevant in a matter of days…and no one is an expert in a constantly evolving world! But Don’t Take My Word For It… 68The Digital Nomad Strategy
  69. 69. Part of learning, unlearning and relearning is where we stand now in the world of modern marketing… 69 @djgeoffe
  70. 70. So ask yourself this question to help you rethink your view of the world and your place in it… 70 @djgeoffe
  71. 71. When was the last time you did something for the first time? 71 @djgeoffe
  72. 72. My Name Is Geoffrey Colon…and I Work at Microsoft 72 @djgeoffe
  73. 73. Web: Twitter: @djgeoffe LinkedIn: Geoffrey Colon SlideShare: Podcast: Disruptive FM Book: Disruptive Marketing 73 @djgeoffe
  74. 74. Buy My Book Because Books Are The Best Form of “Nomadic Content” ;);) 74 @djgeoffe
  75. 75. Geoffrey Colon – Life ShieldFamily&Fun Professional • 3 years at Microsoft • 7 years in agency world • 4 years running my own business (Creative Solutions Marketing Agency) • 10 years in the Music Industry • Professional DJ Interests: diversity in the workplace, women in tech, futurology, social media, mobile technology, digital media, blogging, international travel, music production, DJing, reading, soccer (playing and watching), podcasting, fashion, art, music, politics, philosophy, yoga, cooking, running, boxing, MMA, cycling, swimming, physical conditioning Past Roles: landscaping, DJ, radio sales, promotions manager, creative director, event director, agency entrepreneur, social strategist, client solutions director, vice president of digital strategy Personal • Born in Bethlehem, PA • Lehigh University alum • Lived 20 years in Brooklyn, NY • Married to “the” Allison Dunmire • Two daughters: Olive & Matilda Serve on a non-profit board Bring design thinking through diversity Speak at more events, publish more books Create new and innovative business models and products around human behaviors Destroy poverty, hate, racism, sexism PublishedAuthor&NotedPodcaster
  76. 76. Mi nombre es Geoffrey Colon…y trabajo en Microsoft 76 @djgeoffe
  77. 77. Mon nom est Geoffrey Colon…et je travaille chez Microsoft 77 @djgeoffe
  78. 78. Mein Name ist Geoffrey Colon…und ich arbeite bei Microsoft 78 @djgeoffe
  79. 79. मेरा नाम Geoffrey बृहदान्त्र है और मैं माइक्रोसॉफ्ट में काम Microsoft 79 @djgeoffe
  80. 80. मेरा नाम Geoffrey बृहदान्त्र है और मैं माइक्रोसॉफ्ट में काम Microsoft 80 @djgeoffe
  81. 81. 我的名字叫傑佛瑞結腸和我 在微軟工作 Microsoft 81 @djgeoffe
  82. 82. © 2016 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved. Microsoft, Windows, and other product names are or may be registered trademarks and/or trademarks in the U.S. and/or other countries. The information herein is for informational purposes only and represents the current view of Microsoft Corporation as of the date of this presentation. Because Microsoft must respond to changing market conditions, it should not be interpreted as a commitment on the part of Microsoft, and Microsoft cannot guarantee the accuracy of any information provided after the date of this presentation. Microsoft MAKES NO WARRANTIES–EXPRESS, IMPLIED, OR STATUTORY– REGARDING THE NFORMATION IN THIS PRESENTATION.