Redefining The Problem

When I co-founded Activate last year, one of my goals was that, as much as possible, we’d share what we learned about helping established companies with their strategies. I know there are plenty of old-school consulting companies that publish big, fat white papers that nobody reads, but I was raised on stuff like Getting Real. I want to help articulate a message that makes sense to the CEOs of the biggest media companies around, while also compelling someone who’s knee-deep in doing a startup to be able to look at a perspective on big media that gets them excited about the opportunity to collaborate. Media companies face perhaps the most acute and visible form of the Innovator’s Dilemma of any industry, and it’s exacerbated by the fact that startups and media companies don’t really even speak the same language, let alone speak to each other.

So, we focused a lot of time and energy from our senior team at Activate on creating a presentation called Redefiners. The premise is, whether you’re a big or small company, if you’re going to build a big new business going forward, you’ll do it by redefining a market that exists at the intersection of media and technology. Based on our work over the past year or two, as well as based on broader experiences dating back to the beginning of the web’s impact on media and business, we’ve collected some key ideas to start that conversation. It should take you about ten minutes to flip through. Since we first started sharing these ideas on Business Insider and SlideShare and on itself a few days ago, about 100,000 people have read through the slides. It’s been gratifying to see so many people be interested, but it’s just a start. I hope you’ll take a few minutes to read over it, and let me know if any ideas in particular resonated with you, or if anything seemed glaringly wrong or confusing.

It should be possible to take two important, powerful communities that are shaping culture and start to shift them from warily eyeing each other as potential threats and instead move towards fruitful collaboration together. Here’s one starting point.