FOOA: Tying Up Loose Ends

Since I never got around to giving a proper writeup of the second day of the Future of Online Advertising conference, I wanted to take this chance to give a very quick reflection on the whole experience (especially after having written this post).

Day two was better. The food was more substantial, the speakers more varied, there was seemingly less Powerpoint, and I heard fewer people engaging in Web 2.0 back-patting. I talked to the really interesting, and really nice Maryrose Lyons from Brightspark Consulting, Ireland - which was also my very first time meeting another blogger because of blogging. A few of the presentations were great, some good, and Ryan Carson’s candid (and unscheduled) presentation about the advertising that the conference organizers did themselves was really cool. He admitted that they had a really tough time figuring out the right way to do things, and it was obvious that they learned a heck of a lot doing their first conference in the United States.

I spoke briefly with Lisa of Carson Systems, and she was extremely nice - apologetic regarding my concerns, but also refreshingly upfront about the many difficulties they ran into in the process of planning and executing the conference. They didn’t find my notes, after all (though they found somebody’s!), but I don’t particularly care about that. Lisa also extended an invitation to the next Future of Web Design conference (to be held in Florida this fall), and if there’s any way I could get down there, I would love to go. In spite of the issues I had with this conference, and the various moments of letdown, I got a strong sense that the organizers are really focused on learning and on growing these events, and I think they provide great value to the various industries they deal with. Carson Systems strikes me as a group that is intent on moving into the future, fully aware that they aren’t going to have all the right answers the first time.

Plus, well, Web Design is more my “thing” than advertising.

Anyone want to pay for me to fly down there and take a few days off work?

Pretty please?