The After Phocuswright Feeling: I’ve Got to Up My Game!

After a conference like this my group of webmaster pals and I all came away with the same feeling. Whoa, we’ve got so much work to do! That happens when you hear from a kid who graduated from MIT in 2010, and now has VC backers providing millions for a start-up called HipMunk, an airfare search engine that factors in annoying things like multi-leg flights and predawn departures.

Or the story of Rich Barton, who in 2000 was the head of Expedia and in the ten years that followed went on to develop five more sites that together garner 20 million monthly pageviews, each providing information that people really want in an easy to read format. Or the people behind Groupon, a company that in nine months went from 100 to 3000 employees and now has 30 million members eagerly spending money every day on their emailed deals.

It all makes me feel, well, inadequate. Or lazy. Or just that maybe, at my age of 51, I’m out of the league of these young geniuses and that I’ve gotta up my game. So I’ll head back to Deerfield thinking about new ways we can improve our site. Adding maps, checking out a new hotel partnership, developing a way to automatically post our stories. These are all in the pipeline, along with developing a new website that looks as great on a screen of a smartphone or a tablet.

It’s not a new feeling, this sense of my own laziness, or that I might be too old to keep up with these young Turks. Yet it’s invigorating to listen to these presentations. Even though I’ll have to work much harder, I’ll be inspired as I do it.