By: Suzy BostInno's State of Innovation Forum brought together leaders from the marketing, education, mobile and retail e-commerce industries. Leaders from Karmaloop to Harvard Business School sat on panels and discussed the hot-button issues in their industries. For example, the marketing panelists discussed whether or not Tumblr was a good buy for Yahoo and if users' privacy concerns will affect targeted advertising. The panelists found themselves on different sides of the arguments, but all managed to defend their viewpoints well. One thought that Tumblr might bring in a younger audience for Yahoo, while another said Yahoo will have a tough time monetizing Tumblr. When it came to privacy concerns, the argument was heated. One panelist said it would take an online Armageddon for users to care about being targeted, while another thought that privacy concerns are already causing users to limit what they put out online, because they're afraid of where it is going and for what it is being used. The retail e-commerce panel proved to be just as lively. David Oksman of Life is Good, Niraj Shah of Wayfair and other e-commerce leaders, presented their thoughts on global strategies, loyalty programs, physical storefronts and more. The discussion buzzed around the need (or lack thereof) for a physical storefront. One panelist made the point that a physical storefront strengthens a brand in the eye of a consumer, but it is not necessarily the best use of capital. Another panelist explained that the store needs to fulfill the experience of the brand in order to be successful. I left the State of Innovation Forum armed with knowledge and insight to bring back to discussions with our marketing clients and team. Hats off to BostInno and all of the panelists for a great day of learning, innovation and networking. To learn more about BostInno's State of Innovation series, request access here or follow #BSOIForum on Twitter.
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