Next Musk, Gates can be Pinoys

When homegrown tech and marketing disruptor Renesar Deunida landed in the United States to blitz through technology, cybersecurity, and digital marketing trade shows, he immediately drew interview requests from the Founder’s Courier and the Market Herald.

The Courier and Herald, two top digital innovation websites, wanted to know how Philippine companies had kept themselves afloat amid the rough seas churned by the lockdowns imposed to stem the spread of Covid-19.

On that common thread, Deunida explained that social media and online selling empowered people as they were forced to stay, work or study from home, with their smartphones and laptops as their only connections to the outside world.

Deunida told the Herald that companies needed to quickly embrace technology and social media whether doing B2B (business with other businesses) or directly with consumers. Social media also took the political spotlight, he added, as Filipinos elected a new set of leaders this year.

Innovate or die

“It’s either you embrace technology or you go extinct. It’s either you innovate or die,” Deunida quipped when asked what’s to be gained by Filipinos in going to the 2022 Augmented World Expo (AWE) in Sta. Clara, the RSA Conference in San Francisco, and the Digital Marketing Convention (DigiMarCon) in San Diego.

The first stop for the SARTiNE CEO and 44-year-old father of two was AWE which showcased the latest hardware, software, and extended reality concepts with over a hundred exhibitors and 200-plus speakers.

“We want to adopt for the peculiar needs of Filipinos the latest technologies that could elevate our quality of life, empower businesses and, ultimately, help our country traverse the ever-changing digital trade and social media landscape,” Deunida said.

“I never travel for leisure, but to learn and to be inspired,” the SARTiNE executive said. “After all, we’re in a world where nations are separated by geography and geopolitics but are nonetheless conjoined by digital innovations.”

Gateway vulnerabilities

A key takeaway from AWE, he said, is that the Philippines must take advantage of the virtual world industry to help local industries not just survive but expand beyond the country’s shores.

The RSA convention, on the other, hand brought out the best tools to stop malevolent players like hackers from exploiting digital gateway vulnerabilities like poorly secured corporate systems and their connected WFH employees, he explained.

DigiMarCon, Deunida, said highlighted new insights, methodologies, and strategies to help bring brand campaigns to the next level as companies gear up for the new normal. He said it’s all about “helping industries differentiate themselves and their products from the competition.”

“At AWE, we’ve seen how XR has gone beyond virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) gaming and how we, at SARTiNE, are on the right track in the adoption of immersive technologies,” he recounted.

Try before you buy

“Indeed, we can help businesses implement that buzz phrase ‘try-before-you-buy’ experiences, like people knowing if that huge 80-inch 8K video panel would fit on their living room wall and whether that’s too big a screen for comfortable viewing,” he said.

He explained that with XR and other emerging tech, many businesses can improve their bottom line in the same way that upstarts can disrupt the norm like the original Silicon Valley innovators.

For someone whose name rhymes with that of King Leonidas of the Spartan 300 fame, Deunida said many Filipinos have what it takes to be the next Elon Musk or Bill Gates.

“For me, it’s just a matter of finding the next game-changing innovation that would serve as a quantum leap for mankind,” Deunida said.

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