This week I'm in the city of Big Ben for ad:tech London, which kicked off this morning with a keynote by Managing Partner Thomas Gensemer of Blue State Digital, who explained -- as much as he could in a 30 minute space -- what keys to success characterized the Obama campaign.
This particular ad:tech is unique because we're trying something new and scary: livetweeting a number of the presentations. A feature called Picture on Picture enables us to broadcast three projections at once: a video projection of the session, the presentation (if panelists have any PowerPoints) and a dedicated window for the Twitter feed.
Each presentation has its own hashtag, which you can find in the ad:tech programme and which enables us to separate panel-specific tweets from general #adtechlondon tweets. For example, here's the material from the Obama keynote.
The cool thing about this experiment:
o It's new territory for ad:tech, an attempt to reap practical real-time application from a tool that's captured the imagination of both brand folks and citizen users.
o You can see commentary while the speaker is presenting, enabling you to catch things you missed and also input feedback if you think a given point is exceptional or total crap. (Seriously. The ad:tech folks were like, "This is part of the new environment. We should all welcome that kind of feedback.")
o People that get overlooked in the QA can air their views right over the speaker's head -- which certainly contributes to a session's entertainment value.
o There isn't any wifi in the auditorium, which means livetweet feedback is limited to users with 3G phones.
o Attendance is thin -- about 200 pre-reg -- which means that while the crowd's a little more intimate, there isn't a great deal of participation.
Still trying to work out the perfect formula. At the very least, I'm glad it's something we're trying and not just talking about. In the meantime, follow conference-related tweets at @adtech_london. Feedback that isn't batshit-insane* will receive a warm fuzzy reception.
* When I started tweeting as @adtech_london early this morning, somebody on Twitter ran off-field with the Obama conversation and tried converting my religion. Come on, there's a place and time for that: college on the quad.