Surf Summit 15 ended on a bright note Friday, May 18, as the surf industry came together once more to learn from AOL Digital Prophet David Shing. After a morning of catching waves at Cabo Surf’s Old Mans, Shing took to the podium with several key takeaways for those looking to enhance their web presence.
“All of us are suffering from ‘social fatigue’ so we have to be careful with authenticity,” says Shing about companies and brands approaching social media strategies. “It’s not about the size, it’s about the influence —who in your network are you getting to talk about you.”
A few places where Shing believes brands “must be” included Pinterest, which has seen more than 1,200% growth per month since its launch, as well as PATH, which he referred to as “the social network of the future.” Shing cautioned that individuals are moving away from communities such as Facebook, to more intimate networks made up of like-minded individuals.
“Think of social not as a place you go to, but something you do—a utility, or tool for your brand,” says Shing.
As the sunshine faded into a warm Cabo evening, the industry rallied at the beach for dinner, and a special presentation by SIMA Executive Director Sean Smith, awarding Fernando Aguerre with The Dick Baker Memorial Award. Aguerre, who gave a moving speech about his friendship with Baker over the years, segued into a lively discussion between surf legend moderator Martin Potter and fellow legends Keith Malloy, Nathan Fletcher, and Tom Curren. All in all, the night wrapped up with a strong underlying message to keep the surf industry alive by staying united and sharing stories of our culture. Big thanks to SIMA for another successful Surf Summit—see you all next year!
Follow the jump for day one and two coverage…