This year Spark.me conference, one of the largest marketing conferences in Southeast Europe, was held on May 25-26 at Porto Montenegro Auditorium in Tivat. This two-day event welcomed some of the greatest names in entrepreneurship and marketing business.
Both days were fuelled with positive energy and useful insights from successful and inspiring speakers from areas of marketing, innovations, entrepreneurship, and travel.
The opening keynote speaker was Peter Shankman, a five-time bestselling author, serial entrepreneur and customer service expert. He spoke of his rise in the business world, the importance of branding, and customers’ expectations of the service. He gave helpful tips on how to improve communication with customers and pointed out the significance of listening to customers to provide quality service.
Next up was Jason Miller, the Brand Marketing Lead at Microsoft EMEA, a blogger, writer, and comedian, who gave an inspiring talk on the intersection of creativity and artificial intelligence.
Following artificial intelligence, Cate Murden, made an emphasis on the importance for human of building resilience in a 21st-century world. She is the founder of PUSH Mind and body company – a business consultancy grounded in human behavior. Murden pointed out how easy it is to feel completely overwhelmed in today world of the constant influx of information and how it is important not to let it take over our lives.
Magic on stage was brought by an internet sensation Julius Dein, one of the world’s fastest-growing magicians. He spoke all about his road to fame, which was met with many ups and downs. Social media was Julius’ main stage, and he explained how he used a different approach to reach the masses and build an online audience of over 20 million followers across his social media accounts.
Sam Conniff Allende, a multi-award winning serial social entrepreneur and an acclaimed public speaker, gave a presentation on professional rule breaking which he described as an essential 21st-century skill. “When you carry on to play by the rules, you play to lose.” He encouraged taking that step further and starting a rebellion, creating that good trouble that’s necessary in the world, all in favor of reaching set goals that lead to a successful business.
Talk about embodying the future and translating future uncertainties into present-day choices, was given by Anab Jain, a futurist, filmmaker, and co-founder of Superflux design and film studio. She presented some of the projects by her team, one of them is The Drone Aviary – an investigation of the social, political and cultural potential of drone technology as it enters civil space.
Day 2 started with Jeremiah Owyang, the founder, and CEO of Catalyst Companies that help brands overcome challenges and focus on corporate innovation leaders. By presenting and explaining the six digital eras, Owyang brought closer the idea of discovering your own digital path without letting technology overtake human labour entirely. “Any repetitive task is going to be automated. Make sure it’s not you.”
Brian Fanzo, the founder iSocialFanz, gave a motivational presentation on how to put your content out there, stand out from the noise and engage with customers of all ages by “getting your content where your audience is“. He explained the importance of shrinking the gap between online and offline world and marketing your content in a way that your target customers find relatable since “the future of marketing is relatability.”
The stage was then occupied by Tom Goodwin, the Executive Vice President, Head of Innovation for Zenith Media and the author of Digital Darwinism, introduced the audience to the power of rethinking what technology makes possible today. He encouraged rethinking of what should have been built through explaining the development of Walkman, Discman, MP3 player and iPhone, pointing out that “you are either a startup or a turnaround.” Goodwin wanted to inspire the audience to use what we have now, to go out and make a difference.
Solo traveler of seven years, Brooke Saward, founder of one of the worlds most read travel blogs, World of Wanderlust, talked about her travel experience, how she lives out of a suitcase and gave helpful tips about traveling solo and exploring the world. Brooke pointed out that “there is much more to travel than a perfect Instagram picture.”
Lars Silberbauer, Senior Vice President at Viacom Digital Studios, spoke about his experience of working with Lego and presented the audience with 6 secrets behind digital creative success. His advice is to not just be best at doing one specific thing but to be best at adapting, predicting and creating change in the digital landscape.
To honor of closing the conference was given to Andrew Keen, one of the world best known and controversial commentators on the digital revolution. Keen presented the audience with the raw truth about technology and how it influences our present and what impact it will have on our future. With his talk, Keen wanted to make it clear that “technology doesn’t have a mind of its own. It was made by us so it can be unmade by us.”
As usual, Spark.me organized a start-up competition among ambitious and talented teams of developers from the region. The winner is Boostowski – and app, which allows boosting sales by providing product training, motivates salespeople, helps to improve employees sales skills. They received a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to present and discuss their idea with the “tech elite” on October 2-4, 2019 in San Francisco, which includes two round-trip tickets to San Francisco, hotel accommodation for three days (for two people), two tickets for the three-day TechCrunch Disrupt San Francisco 2019 conference, and their own Startup Alley booth. Our congratulations!
It was a great another year with a lot of changes, bringing the whole initiative on the next level. Congratulation and bo thank you for such event to the dedicated and passionate team of Spark.me and its founders – Natasa Djukanovic, Predrag Lešić, and Vladimir Vulic.