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Web Innovation 2007 : Day 1

Just got back from attending an interesting Day 1 of the Web Innovation 2007 Conference. Promise to upload photos soon. It was heartening to note that finally, User Experience was given its due recognition in many of the Web 2.0 related presentations.

Both Adobe & Microsoft extensively promoted Flex, AIR, Silver Light and Expressions with some cool demos and handed-out 60 day trial versions of their products.

India is happenening and will continue to grow. About 7 million mobile devices get added every month. 50% of its population is under 20. However, the lack of infrastructure is inhibiting the growth in the no of broadband connections. Network congestion is affecting the growth in the no. of people accessing the net using mobile devices.

What is Web 20. and is there moolah in Indian Web 2.0 services and products?

The panelist sent mixed signals to these questions. Web 2.0 is seen as a natural progression of the earlier web and that it is collaborative and involves the community and it goes to the users and user s generate content and all that jazz. M.P Ranjan says that its “just a mindset” and not really about technology. KK said that Web 2.0 = 4Cs + P(Content, Commerce, Context, Community and Personalization).

About making monies in the Web 2.0 space, India is clearly not yet there. Big global players like Yahoo, Google and Microsoft will make money through Web 2.0 services ( online advertising is one) post an inevitable shake-out. Facebook aint making enough monies and so does LinkedIn. It is difficult to predict the outcome. A few Web 2.0 solutions that address unique localized needs will make monies (Eg. www.BharatMatrimony.com)

The 3 Screens that matter are TV, Mobile & PCs. To this Prof. Ranjan reacted there are multiple experience opportunities (like haptic ) are available and are yet to be targetted. Rajan recommended a wholistic approach to not just address the needs english speaking city breds, but also the unique local needs to Indian rural folks.

Geo Search Engine models that worked for the Western countries might not really work in the Indian context because the varied user needs, cultural differences et all. “Pan Wallah” model using “Landmarks” was recommended.

I quite enjoyed Google’s Parminder Singh’s preso on “Maximizin marketing effectiveness with latest Online & Search Tools. The different phases of AIDA principle need not necessarily happen in a progressive order but can happen in any order online.

It takes anywhere between 2 minutes to 2 month to 2 years for users to research and buy products either online or offline. The visual he used was interesting and directly drove the point home. Tradionally, marketeers used to look at market segments using a magnifying glass. Often the wrong target audience was targetted at ineffectively. On the other hand, individual users are now looking for products with magnifying glass ( searching) and that being available to them at the right place, at the right time with the right message will itself help increase sales. The term he used to sum it all up was “M.O.R”, the Moment of Relevance.. He also talked about the flexibility of the internet advertising space with neat examples and how mass marketing and precision marketing get united with google’s online advertising strategy.

Met some ex colleagues and acquaintances like Karthikeyan, Kiruba, Pandurang et all

Some observations : The online payment gateway malfunctioned but online registration kinda worked (so much for all that jazz about web 2.0 bla :). Speakers were lost in the dark and the backdrop was in focus thanks to the incorrect lighting. Looking forwards to Day 2.

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