Here are my thoughts on the recent Digital Innovation Summit held in San Francisco. In general there were some good speakers with excellent content. As a strategist looking for case studies on digital disruption, substitution and good old competitive strategy, one gripe was that the Strategy track was anything but strategic.
The best discussion of strategy was the excellent Best Buy (I presume vs. Amazon) presentation part of the Brand track and framed in three Strategic Objectives: Be a trusted advisor, Omni channel engagement and Grow relationship.
A panel discussion would have been interesting between the Universal Music Group and Soundcloud. How the Music business got itself into such a huge mess, giving up on-line distribution in the process is well documented. However, it was interesting to see that new A&R activities are now also outsourced or crowdsourced on the web’s mixtape platform.
Latter in the day, Sony gave us a sneak peak of the console wars that are taking shape for another heavyweight contest his holiday season with some very clear positioning now between PS4 = Immersive Game Play, Xbox One = trying to be the living room console of choice, seeing that the PC franchise came up short and they are irrelevant in Mobile, and Nintendo = well still being Nintendo, pitching to Kids and Grannies.
Finally GM hit the nail on the button when they said they are in the transportation business and not a car OEM. But you get the feeling that while the strategic logic for GM is fine, a business model based on the best parts of Tesla, Google Car, Tred, and the now dead Better Place will disrupt OEMs and the value network entirely. So it seems that real disruption comes from the outside and not within an industry. Watch your backs then…