As of August 9, we have confirmed these companies. Please check back in the coming weeks for more confirmed visits.
Nobody knows the inside story of Silicon Valley like Alan Mutter — leader, moderator, and guru of the INMA Silicon Valley Study Tour. Ink-stained newspaper editor early in his career and Silicon Valley start-up CEO later, Alan today is an internationally known media consultant who taught for a decade at the University of California at Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism. Sign up for the INMA Silicon Valley Study Tour and peek inside the doors INMA will exclusively open for you. Benefit from his insights and wisdom in the intimate atmosphere of a study tour.
The INMA Silicon Valley Study Tour is organised around these key themes and activities:
Building audience via enriched content and social networks
Leveraging third-party platforms (like Google) to build scale
Creating, sharing and monetising video, the fastest-growing format
Monetisation via traditional and native ads — and more
A first look at emerging technology that will shape the future
Group roundtables to network, discuss observations and share ideas
Following is a list of planned activities for the Silicon Valley Study Tour as of August 9, 2019. Additional visits and speakers are being arranged. This site will be updated as new participants are confirmed and in the event of late-breaking schedule changes.
We will begin at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in San Francisco with a welcome reception featuring a preview of the week's upcoming events by Alan Mutter, the long-time leader of the INMA Silicon Valley Study Tour. Mutter combines years of publishing experience with years as a CEO and investor in Silicon Valley.
To keynote our first day in San Francisco and the week ahead, we will hear from Don Marti, a top strategist at Mozilla who will discuss how the web will evolve in an era of increased concern over information integrity and consumer privacy. He will be joined by Dave Gehring, a Google and Guardian veteran who now is the founder of Distributed Media Labs, a company that aims to provide publishers with tools to control and profit from content distributed over the next-generation web.
KQED, which is among the largest public broadcasting affiliates in the United States, derives 56% of its revenues from membership fees and has aggressively expanded its digital presence to deliver more local news. Even though its roots are in broadcasting, KQED is an excellent example of digital transformation by a legacy media company. KQED is one of several news organizations that has partnered with the non-profit CalMatters state news site to produce and share content, enabling efficient, in-depth, networked coverage that no single news organization otherwise could provide. Executives from KQED and CalMatters will discuss the intricacies of managing donor-supported journalism.
With publishers increasingly turning their attention to expanding audience revenues, Cxense will demonstrate its dynamic paywall technology, which leverages user data, analytical algorithms and advanced targeting techniques to optimize offers to potential subscribers.
Salesforce will discuss the customer-relations management (CRM) solution it has developed to help media companies like Financial Times and Spotify to build audience and grow subscription revenues.
We will begin two intensive days in Silicon Valley with a visit to the main campus of Google in Mountain View. Google, which hardly needs any introduction, dominates several seminal digital realms: search, digital advertising, video-sharing via YouTube and mobile operating systems via Android.
Adobe, which recently published an extensive white paper on the past and future of digital advertising, will discuss the strategic findings that underpin its integrated Ad Cloud platform.
Privately held PubMatic is one of the few companies that offers a publisher-centric solution for improving ad yields across digital platforms. Founder and CEO Rajeev Goel will provide his perspective on how publishers can leverage first-party data in an era of increasing privacy controls.
At dinner at the Quattro restaurant at the Four Seasons Hotel in Palo Alto, we will get a rare insight into the likely future of digital advertising from the man who literally invented the first programmatic ad server in the mid-1990s. Dave Zinman, who has been the founder and top officer of a series of successful companies, is widely considered to be one of the leading ad-tech innovators in Silicon Valley and has been a popular speaker at previous study tours.
On our second day in Silicon Valley, we will visit the Facebook campus in Menlo Park, which also owns Instagram, WhatsApp and the Oculus virtual-reality brand. In addition to hearing about new product and partnership opportunities, we expect to hear how Facebook is fighting fake news, responding to privacy concerns and endeavoring to create the Libra cryptocurrency.
We will drive to iconic Sand Hill Road, the Wall Street of venture capital, for a briefing on the Silicon Valley venture process at Andreessen Horowitz (www.a16z.com), a prominent firm founded by Marc Andreessen, the creator of the original Netscape browser. The session will include a presentation from Substack, a new addition to the a16z portfolio that has developed an innovative platform to help publishers produce and monetize newsletters.
This start-up is using advanced technology to attempt to efficiently discover, curate and publish news for communities as small as 0.2 of a mile (0.3 km) in size.
Bloomberg, a global news and information service, has made a major investment to produce video programming across a variety of platforms. M. Scott Havens, the Global Head of Digital, will explain the Bloomberg video strategy - and how it is being executed.
Oovvuu leverages IBM's Watson artificial intelligence and a global network of journalists to match relevant video with news articles in near real time, enabling richer content and stronger monetization for participating publishers. The company has won support from IBM. Amazon and others.
Knowhere is a second start-up focused on enriching content. The company's approach is to equip flesh-and-blood journalists with artificial intelligence tools to speed the discovery, reporting and production of articles.
Publishers aiming to build strong and growing subscription businesses have to make never-ending commitments to reinforcing the value of their products to their customers, according to author and Silicon Valley marketing consultant Robbie Kellman Baxter. She will discuss the "forever transaction" approach to building customer loyalty in an after-dinner talk at a popular San Francisco restaurant.
We conclude the week's work with a morning visit to the San Francisco Chronicle, which was one of the earliest newspapers to move to digital publishing. Owned by the privately held Hearst Corp., the Chronicle has diversified its products and revenues and says it has achieved its profit goals over successive recent years.
The work may be done by noontime on Friday, but the week won't be over. After departing the Chronicle, we will drive to lunch at the famous Copia Restaurant operated by the Culinary Institute of America in Napa Valley. Then, we head to Wine Country to tour (and, yes, taste) at two of the region's leading vintners. The bus will return to the Ritz-Carlton Hotel approximately 8:00 p.m. Friday.
What is the attire?
Casual attire is recommended for the entire week aside from the closing dinner on Thursday. Please come prepared with comfortable walking shoes and an umbrella.
What is included in the price
- Expert guide to Silicon Valley
- Preparatory materials for tour
- Bus transfers during the study tour
- Welcome cocktail reception
- Refreshments and lunches during the five tour days
- Silicon Valley group dinner
- Closing dinner
- Bonus Friday afternoon activities
What will the weather be like?
Expect highs of 67°F (19°C) and lows of 52°F (11°C)
Cancellations will be accepted until August 20, 2019, minus a US$750 administration fee. Cancellations received after this date will not be refunded. Substitutions may be accommodated if submitted in writing by October 1, 2019.
There are limited spaces on the INMA Silicon Valley Study Tour and we expect the tour to sell out. Registrations are on a first-come, first-served basis. If payment is not received within 14 days of the registration, the tour spot is forfeited. Once the tour reaches capacity, INMA will create a waitlist.
Click below to reserve your spot on the INMA Silicon Valley Study Tour
Note: All rates are per person
Price includes: Expert guide to Silicon Valley, Preparatory materials for tour, Bus transfers during the study tour, Welcome cocktail reception, Refreshments and lunches during the five tour days, Silicon Valley group dinner, Closing Dinner, Bonus Friday programming and activities.
Not included: Airline transportation, airport transfers, hotel room, and meals not specifically outlined.
Non-member rate: This includes one year of individual membership in INMA.
Cancellation/Substitution Policy: Cancellations will be accepted until August 20, 2019, minus a US$750 administration fee. Cancellations received after this date will not be refunded. Substitutions may be accommodated if submitted in writing by October 1, 2019.
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