Mobile World Congress is Coming! Are You Ready?

I might also have titled this column Why the 2016 Mobile World Congress is the Most Important Event for Brands and Agencies to Attend, because I believe that the single most important opportunity for brands today is understanding the impact of the smartphone users on their businesses.

Whether brands are grappling with the effect of the Internet of Things (IOT) on the existing two billion smartphone users or looking ahead to the consumer habits of the billion users coming online by 2020, it is essential to understand why and how the world is changing. For anyone interested in learning about global, real-time innovation, there is no better classroom than the 2016 Mobile World Congress. Here's a video that explains it all.

What is Mobile World Congress?

Mobile World Congress is an annual industry event held in Barcelona, Spain at the end of February.  The event was created by the GSMA (Groupe Speciale Mobile Association) which represents 800 telecom operators and the broader mobile ecosystem, including handset and device makers, software companies, equipment providers and Internet companies, as well as organizations in adjacent industry sectors. Importantly, Mobile World Congress 2016 brings the world’s technology and thought leaders together in one place for four days. Imagine thousands of CEOs and government leaders all in one place and with one purpose and you can see the value of Mobile World Congress.

Here Is the Challenge for Brands and Agencies Today.

The pace of change today has no limit and the consequence of missing a trend or failing to understand a technology can impact a company’s bottom line. Innovation and technological solutions are being created 24/7 around the world. Scalable business models for healthcare and banking are being created and deployed in African and Asian countries. The core question for companies is how do you keep up with the pace of change? What are you missing and what are you failing to understand?

Here Is How It Happened.

We have already transitioned to a world of multilateral innovation. Breakthrough inventions are germinating in both developed and developing economies. Successful companies today focus on consumer behavior and find the innovative solutions to satisfy that need, many of which are mobile-based.

What makes Mobile World Congress meaningful and relevant to brands and agencies is the global ecosystem it embodies. The Indian, African and Asian inventors who attend today are shaping our future tomorrow – and they will be at MWC. The technologies they are developing can serve as models and inspiration for all of us.

One question asked by brands and agencies is, “How do you find out about the technologies and the business problems that have already been solved?” Another is, “How do you find out what you don’t know and find out what you are missing?” I believe the answer is in finding new sources of information and broadening your network.

Here Is What You Can Do.

Mobile World Congress begins February 22 and ends February 25. The speakers and ecosystem assembled are second to none. The networking opportunities and events are unmatched.  Many attendees will find new connections and gain new insights into companies and technologies unheard of before Mobile World Congress.

I will be publishing a number of articles which will highlight some of the key themes of Mobile World Congress 2016 and serve as a guide. Stay tuned.

The opinions and points of view expressed in this commentary are exclusively the views of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of MediaVillage/MyersBizNet management or associated bloggers.

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