Chris Lenton
What hasn't happened yet: The shape of digital to come

Wednesday 11 May 2011

Lecture abstract:

"In any sufficiently advanced society, technology is indistinguishable from magic." Arthur C Clarke 1973

If technology has become magic, then marketers are the magicians, why? Because, marketers now often know what customers are thinking before they know themselves.

That music you bought – you'll really like these three similar albums – won't you? We've noticed you bought a DVD on the Second World War; you’ll like these other DVDs as well, and here are three books we think you'll be interested in too. As you’ve been to Cyprus recently, have you thought about Crete or Egypt? Click here and we can do you a deal on hotels and taxis too. I-websites can increasingly show us how to live our lives each day. It’s your mum's birthday today, so don’t forget to buy her some flowers; your car insurance is due; why not look at some different providers?

Is that a good thing or a bad thing?

Is it a scary thing, or is it the case that the current teenagers, who have grown up completely used to interactive technology, see it as normal and would expect companies to know a certain quantity about them?

Chris Lenton explored the digital phenomenon and speculated what might happen next in an environment where the pace of change has outstripped us all, and social media presents us with a situation where we are probably no longer in control of our brand messaging and values.

Speaker biography:

Chris was elected as the Chairman of the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) in 2007, and was subsequently re-elected by the membership and the board in 2010, for a further two year term. He has held a number of roles at the Chartered Institute of Marketing including, Chief Executive, Group Finance Director and Secretary.

In 2003 Chris took up a series of non-executive directorships and was invited to become the chairman of two companies. He later became the Finance, Operations and Marketing Director of The Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators, leaving in 2009 to join the London Academy of Professional Education and Research (LAPRO).

Chris is the current Chairman of LAPRO, an educational group, whose international operations are centered in London and a director of a head hunting, search and selection recruitment business for senior appointments. He also works as the Senior Partner in his own consultancy practice, Lenton and Associates, set up in 2003.

Chris's career as a director has centered on strategic planning, marketing and corporate governance. Ethics and corporate social responsibility have played a key part in his business philosophy. He has qualified as a Chartered Marketer, Chartered Secretary and Chartered Certified Accountant.

Chris has been a company director (both public and private) for the last 28 years. His interests include representative rugby and international rowing (he still rows competitively), actively supports rugby and enjoys the theatre, music, literature and the arts. Chris was a gold medalist in the coxed four at the World Masters Championships held in Vichy, France in 1989.

CHRIS LENTON