IA Summit Recap (2 of 2)

Jackson Fox, VP of UX & Design

Article Category: #Design & Content

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I was excited to attend my 5th IA Summit after missing last year’s event in Denver. I’ve made a lot of good friends via the Summit, and I don’t get to see them often enough. The Summit usually leaves my head full of inspiration and big ideas, and the themes this year were particularly heady. Also, New Orleans!

Thankfully, Laura has nicely summed up some of my favorite talks, particularly Josh Clark and Karen McGrane. Which means I can talk more about cross-channel design.

The Big Idea

The theme for the Summit this year was “crossing channels”, and the speakers certainly hopped on board. I saw 5 talks that focused on cross-channel design—that is, design that spans multiple touchpoints a business has with its customers—and I know I missed at least another half dozen more.

PT Quattlebaum talked about overcoming organizational hurdles to creating great cross-channel experiences. He also challenged his audience to reach out to other practices within our companies to start breaking down those barriers. Søren Muus, Chris Risdon, and Johanna Kollmann shared tools for exploring and designing experiences across channels. Borrowing from business analysis and systems design, they gave us a tour of customer journeys, experience maps, touchpoint scripts, and the business model canvas. Jamie Monberg showed some of the really cool cross-channel design work that Hornall Anderson has been doing for Madison Square Garden, and the Space Needle in Seattle.


New Orleans didn’t disappoint as a venue. Highlights include a knife-and-fork BBQ Shrimp Po-Boy at Bourgne in the Hyatt, and pretty much everything about dinner at La Petite Grocery. There was also that sandwich at Cochon Butcher, and the Eggs Stanley at Stanley. Oh, and these guys from Portland were playing in Jackson Sq. and were really good.


A couple last thoughts, partly for those who might join us at a future IA Summit (you really should!) and partly so I can remind myself later:

  • Say hello to as many new people as possible, you never know when they’ll be your new conference buddy or even live just down the street.
  • Get out and enjoy the city with your new friends. Seriously, get out of the hotel for a while.
  • That said, leave some time for deep conversations. Whether it’s catching up with friends or digging into a cool topic with a speaker, sometimes it’s nice to not have to shout at people across a bar or a table for 20.
  • A 24-hour hotel convenience store with a decent beer selection is pretty handy when the bar closes.


Jackson Fox

Jackson is VP of UX & Design at Viget. He works from our Boulder, CO, office, where he helps startups and organizations turn ideas into usable, effective products.

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