The 2018 edition of Marcomms360 was themed around ‘The State of Change’ and approached this from angles as varied as technology, legislation and martial arts. By and
Austyn Allison Ben Welham
This year’s Marcomms360 event – the second time the Campaign conference has been held – focused on the changes affecting the region’s marketing and communications industry. Agencies, marketing managers, suppliers and others gathered at Dubai’s Fairmont The Palm to listen to a speaker line-up from backgrounds as diverse as law, social media and relationship counselling.
The Middle East, and Dubai in particular, embraces the notion of change in all aspects of life, but speakers were keen to emphasise that we should not fall for what Danish Farhan, CEO of Xische & Co, called “the Kim Kardashian effect” – that is, we all want it, but we don’t know why.
He was talking about the adoption of artificial intelligence, and was supported in his views throughout the day by speakers including Abdulwahed Juma, executive vice-president of brand and corporate communication at UAE telco Du; and Kristoff Copmans, senior principal transformation architect at Oracle, who both emphasised that artificial intelligence (Copmans prefers the term ‘adaptive intelligence’) is better used to support us in our jobs than steer us.
Other conversations ranged from futuristic and more abstract discussions of how block chain could benefit the communications industry to more focused and practical discussions such as Alfan Group’s workshop on developing influencer strategies suited specifically to the region.
The conference was marked by a high calibre of both speakers and attendees, which lent to some industry-moving conversations both on stage and on the sidelines of the conference.
Marcomms360 not only discussed change; it may have created some as well.