As you might have gathered (from my Twitter, Instagram and Facebook feeds :P) I spent the better part of last week in chilly Jaipur, at possibly the coolest “un-conference” I have ever been to; hosted by the super #geekchic people over at WPP Stream! Three days of absolutely stunning conversation, interacting with the friendliest mega-minds behind some of the smartest companies in India, getting a 3D print out of myself (and I’m not gonna lie, a fully Bollywood dance floor!) WHAT’S NOT TO LOVE?!
Don’t take my word for it? I asked some of the baller CEOs & digital marketing ninjas I met there to tell me what THEY liked best about #StreamIndia and THIS is what they had to say! Now don’t you wish you were invited next year? :) #tothemoon
The ones I couldn’t capture on camera I caught on text! Unfortunately I didn’t get all 250 business cards, but you’ll get the drift :) xoxo
*Thank you Yossi Vardi! #Genius
“Stream is an incredible meeting of minds. A true UN-conference aims to bring together leaders of different businesses to discuss where we are as an industry & more importantly where we will be by the time we meet next year. I must admit many trends discussed last year are already realities by the time we met this year and that is something that makes Stream a conference that is massively different from the others. The Gadgetathon specifically as one of Stream’s coolest components always inspires me and everyone else present as there is some next-gen tech that is showcased. Ranjan Kapoor, Sehkhar Kapoor & team WPP have done a stellar job at bringing some of the coolest people together under one roof.” – Devraj Sanyal, Managing Director at Universal Music South Asia
“I was inspired by the sheer energy and talents of the people – from stick figure artists to brilliant musicians; from technology pioneers to entrepreneurs. Now I’m raring to create and do more. Thank you #StreamIndia for an experience of a lifetime.” – Amanda Lee, Corporate Development, WPP
“After an amazing three days spent with over 200 curious minds at WPP’s popular ‘un-conference’ called Stream, I wanted to share with you some snippets that struck me as interesting. Serendipity vs the algorithm. We must consciously search for new experiences and information. Otherwise we run the risk of being limited by the echo chamber we unwittingly live in. Go attend an event you normally would not. Pick up a magazine you normally would not read. Break the mould and you will be pleasantly surprised as to how much it opens up your mind to new ideas that you can apply in your work and life.” – Nikhil Dey, President (Public Relations) at Genesis Burson Marsteller
“The Stream was a great forum to meet and interact with such a diverse set of people and learn from the varied views and experiences of professionals who are in different parts of the digital spectrum. While the unstructured format of the discussions allowed for so many views to come forth, what I especially enjoyed and found valuable were the workshops.” – Ronita Mitra, Sr V.P – Brand, Media, Digital and Consumer Insights, Vodafone
“There are tons of big shots at stream, but everyone looked at your eyes first, not your name tag. There wasn’t a sense of socializing because you might be able to use the person somehow as it is in most professional networking. That made it the best conference I’ve ever been to.” – Jacob Singh, Country Head, India at Acquia
*Psst! It will look something like THIS!
“I personally really enjoyed Roshan’s storytelling workshop. And the 2-3 line stories from makesmethink.com really opened my mind at multiple levels. On the power of brevity. The ability to pack in so many things, emotions in such a short story. And their impact in making you think. Inspired me enough to take a crack at writing one myself:
Today over lunch at stream I saw the girl of my dreams. She looked so happy and I was hoping she’d come sit at my table. And she did. And said she HAD to tell me something. She told me last night at the party at the Fort she’d met the guy of her dreams. Makes me think.
– Ashish Patil, Business & Creative head, Vice President – Yash Raj Films
“The unconference approach of Stream is a sure-shot winner. Informal interactions with experts across diverse subjects truly helped the learning process, and sessions like Ignite set the mind afire with ideas. With change being the only constant today, Stream gave a lot of food for thought to communication professionals across diverse disciplines. Some of my key takeaways were: Content is King but Needs to Dress up like a Queen – Content is at the heart of a successful digital strategy, and what is becoming more obvious is that the plain written text is passé. Content must be dressed up and made appealing with photographs, short films, and real-life imagery…” – Deepshikha Dharmaraj, Chief Marketing and Growth Officer, Genesis Burson Marsteller
“The Stream Tech Lab was fantastic. And I loved the sessions on Programmatic Buying, Content Marketing and Newsjacking.” – Gurmit Singh, Managing Director, Yahoo India
“I think there was an interesting quote from Mark Twain that stayed with me post a presentation being made. ‘The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why’… I still await the latter! Being a first timer, I loved the format and energy at the (un)conference… I guess the buzzword was integration… When someone gets the right formula for that we will move on to the next big problem. Another interesting question that was posed when I pointed out your husband to a person I was having a chat with was, ‘Shouldn’t she be called MrsMalini and not MissMalini?’… Just kidding!” – Carlton D’Silva, Chief Creative Officer at Hungama Digital Services
Hahaha funny you ask Carlton, on my third wedding anniversary, lets revisit the one question EVERYBODY loves to ask me! :P
“A Continuous stream of ideas and madness from Cross Fit training to Midnight Cooking spread over 3 odd days makes Stream a perfect hotspot where Creative Technologist assess Brand Needs / Consumer Insights and indulge in future-scaping of media / content / digital / tech / mobile businesses in a perfect winter sun.” – Milind Pathak, COO, Madhouse India
“Three things I loved at Stream! 1.) Roshan Abbas’ storytelling session, 2) Oculus (by Pratik @Foxymoron): hopefully a way we will watch movies sometime! 3) Powerpoint Karoke!” – Alok Agarwal, Head – Marketing Excellence, GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare Ltd
*Yes there was an elephant too. Just like any good conference should always have!
“Big inspiration for me from StreamIndia was the Ola Ambulance Idea. While the idea was inspirational, there was something more. Just the realization that we can all live in a better society if we put the power of technology and our brilliant powers of communication to good. Just gives our professions a bigger purpose. Beyond just campaigns for brands and beyond wanting to do well for ourselves in the corporate rat race.” – Navin Talreja, President – Ogilvy Mumbai & Kolkata
“Never has there been a time when so much has been going right for India – the the energy and self confidence, the globally very positive opinion, the awakening of the markets and the funding – all this leads to inevitable conclusion that it is our hands to make it big as a nation. Today and now. Amen to that!” – Rajeev Suri, Reliance Jio, RCP
“Stream is truly an “Un” Conference – you get to meet the most interesting people from various walks who are generous with sharing their ideas – its not a monologue unlike most other conferences. (My favourite new word after Stream has been #Mogo :)” – Ranjini Ramachandran, Client Development Director, Unmetric Inc
“I enjoyed every bit of it, from the Ignite Talks, power packed discussions, Roshan’s Storytelling Art and Maati Baani’s sur to Rajeev Raja’s making brands breathe with music PPT Karaoke and the Digital Chief’s vodka shots! It is really the best conference I have ever attended and it wasn’t just because of all the free flow food and drinks. I promise. Thanks WPP for this wonderful event! Special mention to Roshan, in case the name changes to Roshan’s Stream, do count me in :) See you in 2016.” – Vartika Manasvi, Communications Lead, NASSCOM
“One point which I took back with me was raised by a gentleman (whose name I cannot recall) in the discussion, Internet of Toys. The underlying theme of the discussion was that how digital media along with iPads and tablets are making today’s children unsocial and inactive in a way. So, the gentleman asked all the parents in the discussion to reflect upon themselves and decide whether they are becoming a little paranoid regarding this issue, since during his childhood days (which I am guessing was even before my father was born), books were treated in a similar manner. He said that his parents raised the same concerns with books that we are raising today with iPads.
His point of view was that over time all that has changed is the medium with child interacts, and if we all have grown up to be successful in life, so would they, and this to me was a very different and refreshing point that was raised in a discussion which was just being filled with anecdotes about how everyone’s children would rather play Fifa than go out and play soccer and how they were doomed to be couch potatoes all their lives!” – Debjyoti Sen Sharma, Research Manager, IMRB International
“In the world of start up… the only way to make your idea foolproof is you try to kill it. Try to kill it on your own, try to kill it with a bunch of industry professionals or even friends. If it survives the multiple assassination attempts, you should make it.” – Dhanashree Sant, Executive Creative Director, Digital, JWT India
“Liked the eclectic mix of marketers and entrepreneurs at a great venue with good food and alcohol. No single standout or inspiring chat for me – but lots of small little chats and some new friendships.” – Vishal Anand, Chief Product Officer, NewsHunt
*PS. Thank you for the music Saavn!
*Cannot WAIT to go back next year!