London Tech Week gives the UK industry a chance to kick-start conversations about everything that’s new, important and different in the tech world. Ultimately, it’s a chance to sell itself as an industry to the wider business world here and abroad.
The key themes this year fall into a couple of different buckets for me:
Where we are as an industry:
- The 4th Industrial Revolution
- Designing and scaling tech
- Technology talent: that’s the people – you and me!
The ‘push’ messages:
- The UK as an international cutting-edge tech hub
- Technology as positive impact in society and business
Against a backdrop of Brexit, the eagerness for the UK tech industry - which has always been global - to present itself as both borderless and open for business is easy to understand. It will be interesting to see what type of rhetoric we hear in June, particularly in relation to another of the key themes – attracting and retaining the right talent, given the uncertainty about what UK immigration policies might look like.
Similarly, there’s a question-mark over whether tech should be considered a force for good or bad for society at the moment. With little surprise, London Tech Week favours the positive story and organisers think it’s on the industry to start talking about the positive influence tech has on people’s lives. Though with increasing pressure on social networks to better police their platforms, concerns about data privacy, and predatory tactics to influence vulnerable peoples’ behaviour, this isn’t an easy topic to tackle with balance.
Which speakers choose to address the key ‘push’ messages that the event clearly want to be covered, and which chose the topics in the first bucket will be interesting to see.
If you are speaking at London Tech Week, or hosting your own event for customers or the wider industry, check out this piece I wrote on personal branding and how to maximise your speaking slot.
And if you’re brave enough to take on one of the thornier issues, take a look at some of our recent research about the high stakes era we’re playing in. People often think that consumer brands are the only ones affected by high-stakes events, but this isn’t the reality. We don’t see enough B2B companies with a robust crisis communications strategy, and yet the expectations for B2B businesses are higher than ever and no company is immune. Brands willing to address this would surely draw large audiences in June.
If you want to speak to Hotwire about London Tech Week, speaking slots or any trickier issues your brand or sector is facing, get in touch at Eleanor.Sampson@hotwireglobal.com.
Given the march that the US and China have stolen in the tech sector, London and Paris will have to compete hard for tomorrow’s big tech companies.