The Front Seat of the Roller Coaster

Posted on February 22, 2008 by Tony Uphoff

This past week I was a guest speaker at the Folio Publishing Summit in Florida co-chairing the Executive Management working sessions with Bill Holiber President of US News & World Report. This is my second time speaking at a Folio event and both times have been fascinating and valuable experiences for me. In the revolution from media 1.0 to media 2.0, I have been lucky enough to be on the forefront of the process as we evolve print centric businesses to become online centric, multi-platform brands and media networks. I've been in the front seat of the roller coaster if you will

Certainly my company CMP has been one of the leaders in B2B media, transforming from being a print centric publisher to an online, live event and business services centric model, with best in class print over the last 3 years.

The Folio Summit provided a fantastic opportunity to gauge where the industry is in the evolution/revolution and what innovative moves various companies are making. One of the highlights of the conference was the keynote given by Hanley Wood CEO Frank Anton. Standing onstage with a single power point slide with his company name and logo, Frank talked about the 10 deadly sins of B2B media companies. In an age of false prophets (especially in this time of media revolution) Anton's speech was remarkable. Built on common sense with an eye towards innovation, risk taking, embracing the future, while also staying true to your culture and values, his talk stood out amongst anything else presented at the conference. By far.

The conference brought into stark relief where the various publishing companies stand today in harnessing the changes brought on by a media 2.0 world. Don Tenant editorial director of Computerworld and Infoworld at IDG talked about the move from print to online.. With all due respect to the Folio journalist who wrote the piece on the presentation, Tenant's comments are so dated in the technology B2B media market as to be laughable.

I also got the chance to spend time with Rita Burke: President of Zinio as well as Michael Biggerstaff (great name btw): Chief Inspiration Officer of Nxtbook Media. Digital edition technology, long thought to be a major shift and opportunity for print publishers, has been very slow to gain material traction. New hybrid, technologies being developed by both these companies however, blending digital delivery with web and mobile features, may bring new life to this platform.

Lastly thanks to the folks at NxtBook and Runners World for sponsoring a fun run 5k race at 6:30 Friday morning. Bit rough given the timing but it was a blast. Ran a respectable-for me at least-28:00 minutes. Who the heck brought in the ringer who ran the 19:00 minute time though?,

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