Tuesday, February 6, 2018

2018 Dad 2.0 Summit: Day 2 recap

The first day of Dad 2.0 2018 in New Orleans was pretty darned great, and I recapped it in all of its glory here: 

Here's my recap of Day 2.


For Day 2, I can't think of any Lowlights at all, so they are all Highlights.  (Well, the two lowlights are my fault, not the conference.)  And they weren't lowlights as much as disappointments.
  • I wasn't able to book any time with the fabulous haircut/beard guys at the Dove Men+Care Suite as it was all sold out, and so for the first time that they've offered it I haven't availed myself of their services.  
  • There was a really good looking workshop on how to be a Kia Influencer that I was closed out of, because I acted a little late.   I ended up taking a Kia Stinger around town, and had some fun.  I also met with all the sponsors, and for the first time ever was not scrambling to finish my Sponsor card.
On to the Highlights


The day started with what Dad 2 calls Short Form Keynotes.  About 20-25 minute speeches from 3 keynoters, and all 3 were great.  

  • James Breakwell (the nom de plume of the man behind the phenomenon that is XplodingUnicorn.)  He was hawking his book Only Dead on the Inside: A Parent's Guide to Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse. (buy on Amazon here)  He was very very funny, but also insightful.  A couple of the takeaways.  
    • "Twitter gave me two important things I didn't know I needed: Feedback and Focus." 
    • "Going viral is not something that happens to you, but something that you make happen."
    • "Some of my jokes are real, some are made up, but all are relatable to anyone who is raising a child."
  • Jorge Narvaez a Latino blogger from San Diego, tore at the hearts of everyone in the room, as he related why he started blogging, telling the story of his dad putting a gun to the head of his mother.   He needed to be a better father than his father, and heal the hurts of his childhood.  He then sang a heartwrenching song.  My best take away from him (aside from being vulnerable and authentic) was this question that he asked:  "What is your sacred purpose?  Why are you here right now? " Deep and heady stuff.

    Jorge was one of the inaugural students of Reality Changers, a foundation to help inner city youth change their reality.   And read this article about Jorge in the Huffington Post

    Here's a video of Jorge singing a portion of his song:

    • Stewart Reynolds Canadian blogger and Youtuber better known as Brittlestar came back with the message that nobody is ready for anything, and that you should just start doing work and sucking and then getting better at it as you go.  He was effortlessly funny and made all of his video work seem natural and effortless, which it clearly was not.   Three  quotes from his talk:
      • "Life is like punk rock.  You don't wait to go on stage.  You just go on stage, you suck, and then you get better."
      • "Just start. Whether it's a blog or a vlog or a podcast or a book.  The clock is ticking.  You are running out of time.  What are you waiting for?"
      • "No one is really ready for anything."
    All three of these guys were very inspirational and made the hard stuff that they do look super easy.

Left to right:  Alice Chase, David Kargas, Staci Salazar and
Angus Nelson
Angus Nelson of Life of Dad did a fantastic job moderating a panel on how to make your intangible qualities, rather than your google analytics, the focus and the main portion of your work as an influencer.  This may have been the best moderated panel I have ever seen, with Angus asking tough direct questions to panelists, and cutting them off closely if they started to stray from the topic. As a result, we got a lot of takeaways from the panel and from Angus, and with a laser-like focus.  Alice Chase and Staci Salazar were two of the bloggers, and brand marketer David Kargas of Clorox rounded it out.  David had a couple of great things to say about how Clorox looked for influencers, mostly that they were looking for relationships, not analytics.

I had a few takeaways from the panel as evidenced by this tweet from the panel:

I also gleaned a couple of great nuggets from Angus directly:

"Marketing is when they call you, and sales is when you call them."

"It is in the darkest part of the cave that we find the best treasures.  Don't be afraid to look in the dark."

"Your value statement is this: I am x_________ that does y_________ for z_________  so that they can superpower _________ ."

All in all it was a great session, and very useful on a number of levels.  

I attended two other panels on being a YouTube Influencer and being an Instagram influencer.  Both of them had some good insights on what not to do, and a little bit about pricing and equipment.  Neither of them was as well organized or as insightful as the first panel, but they were still worthwhile.  The Youtube panel in particular, had some great community about not getting ripped off-- after all, a brand will spend $50,000 on a video commercial without even blinking ,but if you ask for $1000 for a video you made for them that took 15-20 hours of planning/shooting/editing, they look at you like you are being way too greedy.  You need to budget your time properly when doing this kind of stuff.  Another insight was about the importance of sound quality in your videos, which is often overlooked.

I also watched the two remaining spotlight bloggers, who were equally great as the day before. (shoutouts to Patrick Riccards and Andrew Knotts

for their excellent work)

All in all, I thought these were highlights.

FINAL KEYNOTE:  Jaime Kasap, Google Education Evangelist

The final keynote was pretty powerful.  Jaime Kasap, an immigrant kid from Hell's Kitchen (his mom was from Guatemala and his dad from Syria) lived in pretty abject conditions and pulled himself out of poverty via education.  He's now the chief Google Education Evangelist, and speaks on behalf of Google and helps implement Google into schools worldwide.  Read an interview with Jaime here

He's a wonderful speaker, very funny, a little sarcastic, and very insightful.

Here's a little video from his intro:
He had a lot of wonderful things to say, including these gems:
Skills thought to be needed in the workplace by survey.

  • "All jobs are being affected by automation, not just factory jobs. Automatic cash registers will replace supermarket cashiers. There will still be jobs at the supermarket, but they will change (and you will need different skills). Maybe there will be food experts/salespeople in the aisles, upselling you recipes." 
  • "Current education is set up as an individual sport, but it needs to be a team sport. collaboration is a word, not an idea. We currently encourage kids to take individual tests. If I came to the CEO of Google and said, here's my business plan, I did it all by myself, I didn't get any input from stakeholders or customers or team mates, how long do you think I'd keep my job?" 
The skills that kids actually need in a digital world.
  • "Constant iteration is a fact of life in our world today. Google updates their search engine 600+ times a year. "this Google Pixel2 is the worst technology my daughter will ever see. It's her Commodore 64." 
  • "To get teachers on board with change, we need to present the change as exciting and helpful. If the metaphor is travel, and we said to teachers, "We are going to allow everyone to fly on private planes from now on" would they be on board? Of course! But if they perceive the change as a greyhoud bus, well, good luck." 
  • "We are asking kids  the wrong question about their future. It should not be "What do you want to be when you grow up?" It should be "What problem do you want to solve?"  


I didn't spend a lot of time outdoors taking in the sites, as I was pretty tired.  It was a great time to be in New Orleans-- it was the start of Mardi Gras, but it was not yet full blown. The energy was palpable


I had some great interaction with sponsors, including Dove Men+Care, who had a fantastic room filled with stories of Dads. they included one of my stories/songs that I made up for my son, and I ended up with a nice memento of it as well.

I was also really fortunate to win a set of Harmon Kardon headphones from Kia!  ( I chose the headphones, because I have plenty of Alexa based bluetooth stuff going on in my house!)

So that was a long summary, but totally worth it.  Another Dad 2.0 is in the books.  The nexst one is in San Antonio in February 2019.  Will I see you there?  I've already bought my ticket!


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