Amidst the global fanfare of Euro 2016, people from all over Europe filling the streets to catch a glimpse of the match on the big screens, or cramming into bars to cheer on their nation, a not-so-small tech conference took place. And this was no ordinary industry event. Paris has quickly become a hub for tech companies and Viva Technology Startup Connect reflected that.
Viva Tech was a broad gathering from across Europe emphasizing new technology and startups. I was impressed by how many startups were present on the main floor and the quality of the presenters. Panels and fireside chats were held with luminaries like Tim Armstrong and Eric Schmidt. On day 1, an especially interesting discussion was had between John Chambers and Nancy Hulgrave where user experience and advice shined through.
The panel I took part in discussed mobile monetization and how best to actually monetize. Joined by leaders from Facebook, The New York Times, and IAB, we discussed the various approaches and challenges present to publishers and marketers on mobile. There is clearly a lot of interest on how best to monetize mobile, but also lots of confusion. And without a unified plan within an organization, these monetization efforts will suffer. One area where mobile can benefit is improving the user experience. Without giving users, readers, or shoppers an optimal and easy environment to conduct their actions, monetization will not be strong.
Being involved with conferences and panels is always exciting. Especially when it occurs in a city so rich in history and culture, and one can witness a developing new culture - of the tech variety. It was great to take part in the discussion with the leaders of our industry and to hear that all are in agreement that fixing the user experience is paramount. The conference ended, and Euro 2016 fans continued to roar. As the mobile experience is prioritized more and more, will users roar just the same?