Unlike the speechI did a couple years ago at the 4As- Herd fans might remember that it got me into a bit of trouble - this one is written by a real live doctor who knows what he's talking about (but it's essentially the same argument)
Love the headline ("Brainscans as mindreaders? Don't believe the hype") but think this comment sums up what you need to know about neuromarketing today
Interesting chats by Jeremy, Kevin and Matt, each attempting to define "what's next?" in their respective worlds. Lots of great insights and ideas. Wish I'd had a tape running.
That said, the story that stays with me is one Matt told of some current work C4 are doing about how teenagers are using media today.
Seems one girl the researchers were following was hanging out online doing amongst other things a spot of the hi-speed Instant Messaging that only the young can really manage for any length of time.
She had sorted all her contacts into 6-7 or seven groups - schoolfriends, family etc but also "bitches" "wankers" and so on. What was striking though was the way in which she switched contacts between the groups in real time. Even if the members of her different social networks remained mostly consistent over the short term, their roles were in constant flux. And those are just the small set of folk she is in regular contact with regularly...
Something to bear in mind the next time you here talk about how stuff spreads through social networks and how there are some folk through whom information and influence flows. If only it was that simple...
In reality, it's like watching the great Tommy Cooper do - in his inimitable shambolic stylee - the trick here.
Things are - or seem to be- constant motion...whenever you lift the cover, the thing you expect is not there. Bottle or glass?
...in July make sure you join Piers and his merry band on July 17 2008 at Fort Mason for another PSFK jamboree (not quite a free festival, sorry).
Speakers booked so far: Adrian Ho, Zeus Jones; Andrew Hoppin, NASA; Chris Riley, Apple; Ed Cotton, Influx Insights; Eric Ryan, Method; Jean-Marie Shields, Starbucks; Mark Lewis, DDB; Rohit Bhargava, Ogilvy PR.
Most folk I've worked with are happy to go looking for the new and the emergent and possibly significant from the young and the unspeakably leading edge before it becomes big and popular and yet the same grateful professionals seem to believe that behaviours they see in the mass of the population (in the mainstream, if you like) can only arise arises from what they (marketers, politicians, managers) have done.
We, up here in the Big Chairs, like to think that it's what we do to the little people out there that makes the difference, that without us nothing much will happen.
Like we're actually puppetmasters, pulling the strings.
Truth is, most things spread without us and the best that most managers, marketers and politicians can do is work with the underlying dynamics. Understanding and describing these is the real challenge now for folk doing strategy of all sorts - assuming the world works without us and the best we can do is work with the ordinary folk out there who shape it together.
Of course, the mistake they/we make is claiming responsibility for the good stuff; seems fair that we take the rap for things that are bugger all to do with us, I guess...I suspect this might turn out to be a large part of the Gordon problem.