Wednesday, November 06, 2013

If you don’t attend this Meetup, I’ll kill this dog

Chris Tindal is giving a guest talk on November 21 to the Toronto Content Strategy Meetup about Gastropost. If you only attend one content strategy Meetup in Toronto this year, please make it this one. I saw Chris give a version of this talk last year, and I’ve been raving about it ever since.
I mean no disrespect to the other guest speakers of 2013. All were excellent. We had a heartfelt talk about storytelling. A transparent discussion of why Random House started an online magazine of ideas. An iPad and iPhone app that mixes content and commerce to sell artwork. An in-depth talk about how to merge UX, information architecture and content strategy. Did I mention content strategy celebrity Rahel Bailie? How about multi-screen content strategy?

Hot damn -- 2013 was a pretty great year for the Toronto Content Strategy Meetup.

Back to Chris. The reason his Gastropost guest talk is so vital is that he talks about something I’m extremely passionate about. Something I’ve experienced firsthand: the Lean Startup. There is a lot of blah-blah-blah about Lean Startup and minimum viable product. But buried between the hype and the buzzwords is an incredible approach to solving problems and creating new products and services. The catch is that turning theory into practice can be difficult. Chris’s talk explains the process in a way that is equal parts informative and inspiring.

During my time at the CFC Media Lab, I was incredibly fortunate to work with three other amazing dudes and co-create txt2hold (and later tweet2hold). We didn’t use the Lean Startup as our guidebook, but we did create a working, functional prototype (minimum viable product) in 10 weeks (with the help of amazing mentors and the programming skills of Pearl Chen). The experience, while not quite life-changing, was one of the most significant projects I was a part of in the last few years. And I heard many echoes of my time at the CFC in Chris’s talk last year.

The other great thing about Gastropost is how it bridges the gap between print and digital. Instead of viewing dead tree media as a liability, Gastropost leverages it as an incredible asset. I’ve spent the past few years insisting on the importance of bringing the physical and digital worlds together. Chris agrees.

This is the best $5 you’re going to spend in 2013. Especially since most of your fiver goes directly to Chris Tindal. So spread the word. Tell your friends. Make it happen.