Dan Beranek

product leader in Seattle, WA 98199

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My personal and professional life has always been defined by a spirit of entrepreneurship. There is white space everywhere, and I've been successful helping brands to find and derive value from it by designing experiences that get them directly engaged with their customers. I'm a true Cluetrainer, and believe that if markets are conversations (they are) then the best way to understand your market is to be authentically part of it every single day. Only by being ofa community can you understand how to meet its needs. People are members of many social circles and it's not possible or effective to engage them en mass with a high degree of relevancy. Better ad targeting models are likely to morph into embraced content delivery mechanisms, and social identity systems will provide us with control over how digital experiences tailor themselves to us, but what will never be automated is how brands, people and organizations engage in conversation. I define "Brand Conversation" as the viral loop of content posted, shared, re-shared and discussed, which becomes a virtuous cycle that drives real business value in the form of insights (if you listen and use them) brand association (if you deserve it), and sales (if you earn them).

My work for clients like Target, FedEx, M&M Mars, Steelcase, Scotts, and Mayo Clinic has reframed problems by designing experience strategies based on (1) task-mindset analysis and (2) the best suited media channels for the job. This approach reveals clear opportunities to engage, empower and amplify the voice of both customers and influential advocates.

At Target, my role has been to find and incubate new ways to move the brand and business ahead of our competition. This posture has allowed us to move new media capabilities into the organization freeing up my team to focus on what's next, to optimize what's new, and to replace what's old and ineffective. There's always a next thing. Always have an exit strategy.