My voyage into today’s Web Summit was absorbing, enriching, revelatory and absolutely terrifying…
The energy and enthusiasm from everyone was invigorating. So many people were utterly engaged in their new product, app, service, system, gadget or whatever it was that they were promoting. And that was also what made my visit to the Web Summit so terrifying…What exactly is the difference between all of these companies? What separates the has beens, the might be’s and the ones who eventually make it?
Mark Twain said that there is “no such thing as a new idea…. we keep on turning and make new combinations”. Dropbox was not the first company to think of providing storage in the cloud, Google wasn’t the first search engine. How can companies make the next leap?
Today I saw companies such as reEmbed, Nuday, Buzzin and Powzy. They all looked great, had some super ideas, and had apparently executed their concept well. But why will some of them make it and the others will be well forgotten by next year’s Web Summit?
I don’t have that answer but I definitely think there are 2 big factors; Luck and Communication. The ability for people to communicate about their company to the right people at the right time is absolutely critical for any successful operation. Uber has credited its success to a chance meeting at the Summit where it sourced the funding that it needed to bring it to the next level and this is an example of why Ireland’s Web Summit has to be applauded. The organisers have recognised that the Irish are known for their ability to communicate and they have capitalised on this to make the event one of the World’s largest digital conferences. The Summit is more than a chance to diligently sit and listen to some of the world’s best minds talk about how they ‘made it’.
Everywhere you go you see strangers talking to each other – engaging, educating and entertaining each other. Making new friends, building new allegiances, securing the future of their current or future company. From Night Summits to pub crawls to food summits to mobile apps – everything is catered for – everything a new opportunity to get that lucky break. The Summit has become a relentless pursuit for the attendees to find someone who will give them their big break.
It is terrifying to attend such an event and realise that your one person is out there and that you have to find them. It is terrifying to realise how much competition exists out there. But it is so exciting to be part of this digital revolution and have the opportunity to witness where the might be’s become the next Google, Dropbox, Facebook or Spotify.
The Web Summit has captured this pursuit perfectly and I have no doubt that these 3 days will see the birth of the next set of companies that will dominate the World’s digital and social landscape for many years to come.