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Hard to believe after three full days of events that we could bring more education, networking and fun to our clients, sponsors and friends, but via our newest SXSW event, Geekfest, we once again delivered. This post will focus on the Future of Tech and Marketing portion of the event with speakers Zita Cassizzi of Toms Shoes, Becky Brown of Intel and Pete Blackshaw of Nestle.

Here is a little more background and some key take-aways for each:

Zita Cassizzi is the Chief Digital Officer at TOMS.  She joined TOMS in 2012 and is currently the Global Chief Digital Officer. She is responsible for all things digital including the P&L, social, mobile, customer experience, web development as well as building out the digital international presence. Zita is a dynamic leader with over 20 years of experience in creating and leading global businesses, marketing and global e-commerce. She loves creating global strategies, solving complex business challenges based on data and analytics, and building high-performing teams and businesses as a result. Zita is passionate about women’s issues. During her 16 years at Dell and now at TOMS, she serves as a co-founder of a women’s networking organization.

Zita Cassizzi

Zita opened up by talking about taking technology and leveraging it for the sake of better customer service. And even that starts with some basic grounding tenets:

  • You don’t own your brand.
  • Your customers thoughts and emotions about your brand are more important
  • You must inspire and collaborate with your fans in co-creating brand stories and content with you, making them participants and leading stars
  • You should empower via site, social media to create and foster a sense of community and belonging both online and offline

One of the lenses Tom’s uses for curating their customer experience is via #travelingtoms and #tomsholidaycheer via photos. Online storytelling at its finest.

Another major component of tapping technology to empower the service of their customers is through creating events and moments (experiences) that connect their fans to the brand online and offline. They also leverage diverse online and offline touchpoints (stores, Instagram, installations) and ultimately through technologies like augmented reality.

My favorite point the Zita made is her stressing of the importance of delivering “memorable moments”  thus inspiring and motivating their customers to take action. This should create a dialog in the physical and online world.

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Becky Brown is the vice president in the Global Marketing and Communications organization and director of the Digital Marketing and Media Group at Intel Corporation. She has overall responsibility for Intel’s “connected customer” experience, which encompasses the company’s digital marketing and advertising investments and strategies. Brown leads a global team defining Intel’s roles and investments in a breadth of media, developing relationships across the advertising and digital ecosystem, and building marketing capabilities and solutions to connect the customer journey.

Becky Brown

I love the fact that at an event called “Geekfest” where many of the speakers drilled down on how technology was helping us/changing us, Becky asked us to take a step back and think about the importance of People and Process versus being overly focused on technology and tools.

As part of her thought process, Becky talked about the fact that she turned over 30% of her team last year. Some of the new skill sets she is acquiring include:

  • Expertise vs. generalists
  • Trained vs. acquired
  • Strategic hires (data scientist, customer experience, operations)
  • Comfortable with data and technology
  • New vocabulary
  • Deepen partnership with IT

Becky also noted that she loves hiring Millenials because of their curiosity and the fact that they are really good at asking questions (inquiry mode).

During her talk, one of the visuals she shared really hammered home her message of there being an overabundance of tools (below).

tools

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Pete Blackshaw is the the Vice President of  Digital and Social Media at Nestlé, S.A. Leading global digital strategies for the top FMCG. Pete established the Digital Acceleration Team (DAT) and the Silicon Valley Innovation Outpost (SVIO). DAT is an 8-month digital immersion program for 12 aspiring leaders around the globe, that has now been replicated in 10 markets in Nestlé. SVIO is Nestlé’s connection to the innovation ecosystem in  Silicon Valley, tasked with identifying and leveraging leading digital partners to enhance the health and wellness of consumers. Pete previously served as CMO of  NM Incite, a  Nielsen-McKinsey social media research venture, and earlier, helped Procter & Gamble win Ad Age’s “Interactive Marketer of the Year” distinction. He is the author of  Satisfied Customers Tell Three Friends, Angry Customers Tell 3000 (Doubleday), founder of PlanetFeedback.com, co-founder of  the Word of  Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA) and former Chairman of  the Board for the National Council of  the Better Business Bureau. He  was awarded the Advertising Research Foundation’s (ARF) “Great Minds” distinction in 2010.

Pete BlackshawPete’s talk focused on his company, Nestle’s Innovation Trifecta which talked about:

  • Digital Acceleration Team’s (DAT) model and programming
  • Silicon Valley Outpost
  • Enterprise social media

Pete’s talk created an interesting juxtaposition to that of Becky’s (a technologist talking about the fact that we need to focus more on people and process versus tools and technology). As the head of digital at one of the largest consumer package good companies in the world, he sounded every bit technologist talking about speed, agility, start-ups and digital acceleration.

Pete did echo his belief in the importance of many of the same values and skill sets that Becky mentioned during his talk with a premium being placed on sharing.  In particularly, he stressed sharing across global markets.

Lastly, Pete made a request from the group asking them for help working with Nestles to bring new, innovative solutions into the enterprise. Sounds like a good bridge to the PreCommerce panel on adopting and scaling innovation, Josh Kampel of Techonomy, led the other day.

It was my absolute pleasure to co-host our very first GeekFest with our president, Bob Pearson, and bring together some of the most interesting and technical minds for a great discussion on Open Source, Security, Digital Marketing and Emerging Tech.  This post will focus on our Open Source Software panel, with speakers Joe McCann, Matt Franklin and Boyd Hemphill.

Joe McCann

Joe McCann is a co-founder/CEO of NodeSource. He is a hacker, tinkerer, builder and breaker with more than 13 years of web, mobile and software development experience. He has a special fondness for Node.JS because he can rapidly prototype an idea within minutes. These speedy ideation sessions fed into his desire to help Fortune 500 companies build actual products that allow technology to be utilized in real world scenarios. Joe has a broad background ranging from being a techno DJ to working on Wall Street. The perspective he brings to technology is rather unique and unconventional. Joe is a frequent speaker on the conference circuit, actively promoting emerging technologies and relevant business use cases to bring pragmatism to futurism.

Joe opened the discussion by talking about the macro-trend of unbundling, using cable tv subscriptions as an analog for the future of app development.  In 2014 we reached an inflection point wherein there were as many people with Cable TV vs Internet Subscribersbroadband Internet connections to their homes as there were cable TV subscribers – more and more of those customers want to pay for only the television services they use.  Similarly companies are unbundling – eBay and PayPal split up, Symantec has created Veritas to unbundle their information tech business, and HP announced that they will be splitting into two companies.
Node.JS is well suited for this move in the app space – centered around the idea of creating smaller, unbundled services, which interact via api “contracts” and creating smaller, more agile and manageable micro-services designed to scale.
Joe closed out with the point that every company is ultimately a tech company and must learn to use technology to the betterment of their business.  By moving away from macro-services and large, unwieldy codebases they can become more responsive to the changes in their industry.

Matt Franklin

Our own Matt Franklin is a technical and business leader with experience leading efforts in open source investment, software architecture, big data analytics, identity management, agile software development, service oriented architecture, and social business integration.

As an advocate of open source software, Matt is always looking to apply business practices that pragmatically leverage and contribute to the open source software community. He is an active member of the Apache Software Foundation and participates in local and global open source outreach as an organizer of BarCamps, meet-ups and conferences.

Matt gave the group a great introduction into the Apache Software Foundation, the largest foundation dedicated to the creation and support of Open Source Software.  He introduced us to the mission and purpose of the ASF and the pivotal support it brings to open source projects.  The Apache Way, although often seen by outsiders as a heavyweight process, has been honed over the years to give projects the support they need to flourish.

“The incubator project is the entry path into the Apache Software Foundation for projects and codebases wishing to become part of the Foundation’s efforts.”

He also introduced us to a few projects currently in incubation and some new projects coming into Apache.
  • Kylin is a SQL-style interface on Hadoop recently open sourced from eBay
  • NiFi is a powerful visual system to process and distribute data
  • Tinkerpop is an open source graph computing framework working on it’s first official Apache release
  • Zepplin provides a beautiful data-driven, interactive and collaborative documents with SQL, Scala and more
  • HTrace provides a mechanism for easily tracing processes in distributed systems
  • Ignite is an in-memory data processing fabric designed to deliver uncompromised performance

Boyd

Boyd Hemphill, the Technology Evangelist for StackEngine, is a DevOps thought leader and builder of communities.  With over 25 years of technical experience, he has served as:Implementor of the Theory of Constraints as it applies to the Software Delivery Life Cycle, Automator of tasks that need doing more than once, Systems architect who provides ongoing vision, strategic guidance and mentorship for development teams to ensure long-term systems and data integrity, and Enabler of small teams to set and accomplish large goals.

Boyd is a force for good in the Austin Developer Community, serving as a mentor for many startups and developers.  He can be frequently found running or speaking at Meetups for Austin DevOps, Docker Austin, and other groups, volunteering with Geek Austin events, such as Data Days Texas, and is anchoring the upcoming Container Days Conference.

Boyd talked to us about two upcoming tidal waves – Docker and Lamdba.  Docker is a hot topic among the infrastructure community, which takes virtualization to the next level enabling unheard of level of efficiency.  Docker is moving fast, having gone from preview to production release in under 18 months, and it’s already fully supported by AWS and Google Cloud.  Lambda is a new service announced at Amazon’s latest Re:Invent conference, which creates an ecosystem of event-triggered micro-services.  This allows code to be run only when needed and the attached infrastructure to be billed in sub-second increments.  Together these innovations will dramatically change the way in which applications are created, and with the improved efficiency significantly lower the cost of running an infrastructure.

My favorite point from Boyd’s talk was around disposable environments.  SysAdmins used to treat their infrastructure personally – each server was hand built, lovingly named and carefully cared for.  With the advent of Cloud Computing we’re now treating infrastructure as cattle instead of pets – servers come up and down automatically, do their work then go away.  With micro services and Docker the movement is now to ants instead of cattle – they are so disposable you don’t even notice that you’re stepping on them.  At StackEngine, Boyd is building the tools that make the ants all march in formation.

A huge thanks to all of our speakers at GeekFest.  We’ll be posting the videos from that and our other SXW2O events soon.

For more information on our SXW2O events, please visit our website: http://w2oevents.com

A Brief Recap of the Digital Marketing and Design Panel – part of Saturday’s GeekFest events

In a continuation of the day’s theme of emerging trends in the technology and communication landscape, this panel featured experts sharing their experiences and perspectives on new ways to foster connections. While each of our four experts shared their very approaches, all of them were all rooted in active listening and seeking more meaningful connection points.

Learning from each other

Daina (1)

Daina Middleton, Head of Global Business for Twitter, shared her personal passion for seeking connection through identifying the unique perspectives different team members share in approaching leadership and problem-solving. Middleton has been studying communication phenomena in different time periods, specifically the Old West, when traditional male and female work roles expanded because of need and the harsh environment. Her research has focused on identifying how to create stronger teams by recognizing and valuing the different approaches women and men generally take in the workplace.

Middleton organizes these different approaches with the monikers ‘grace’ and ‘grit’, with ‘grace’ representing the attributes females tend to employ, and ‘grit’ representing the male approach. Middleton explained that, “women use communication as a tool to enhance social connections and create relationships,” while “men use communication to achieve tangible outcomes and establish power.” While neither approach is patently right or wrong, each can be polarizing or limiting. It is only by listening to each other, and working to each team members’ best strengths that we overcome the limitations of a single viewpoint and have the greatest chance to succeed.

Pattern identification on social

Matthew Zito

Matthew Zito, VP of Products at Synthesio, shared his approach to listening to and exploring social patterns and data to create behavior-based profiles of customers and more individual buying journeys. These highly personalized profiles offer insights into customer preferences and personalities in a way that goes beyond demographics or clicks, and demonstrate a much deeper need for marketers to get to know their users as humans, not just buyers.

Zito shared examples of how profiling customer interests (beyond just interest in your product), brands can align their marketing plans with more personal and directed customer journey steps. These plans can even include specific times of day that will be most relevant to your customers. As Zito says, “don’t just measure your customers, understand your customers.”

An anthropological approach

Jon Kolko

The best way to learn how to help customers is to immerse yourself in their personal experiences through living them – challenges, successes, and

all.  That’s the message from Jon Kolko, Director and Founder of the Austin Design Center, speaking about how to listen better and use empathy to create products people love. Sharing some of the principles of his newly-released book, Well Designed, Kolko shared some of his experiences in designing products that are natively customer-first.

For Kolko and his team, customer-first means literally living with your end-user to get hands-on with their experience, hear how they absorb the world in their own words. Kolko shared that in one project, this immersive process involved living with college students, recording and analyzing their comments, and then designing an app to offer specific recommendations about the job application and recruiting process. This work highlighted expectation gaps between the students and recruiters who were filling jobs. Without having that deep experience, Kolko said the team would not have learned certain key insights, including what messages to focus on, what platforms and language to use, and how to make the app useful, while still being fun and appealing to students.

Learn by watching

Kurt Holstein

In a presentation called ‘Personalization – Are the ads from the movie Minority Report almost here?’ Kurt Holstein, President of Azoic Ventures, shared the current status of dynamic ‘DOOH’, or Digital Out of Home display advertising. This is the kind of advertising that is often placed in large environments like Times Square, but is also emerging in smaller footprints like interactive digital signage (think directional kiosks) and in proximity sensors like beacons. In keeping with the theme of learning from listening, Holstein shared the benefits of these types of dynamic ads – both to the marketer and to the end user.

End users will soon have the opportunity to have a much more personal experience with a brand based on customization (assuming they opt in) to share data with brands. In its current form, these beacons and personal approaches rely on apps and active input from the customer, and are best for driving offers or location-based information.

For marketers, new technology like Active Camera Technology (ACT) can recognize visitors and respond to visible demographic data. Age, gender, ethnicity can be combined with location, time of day, dwell time, as well as more individual characteristics like facial emotion markers – all to allow a display to respond and react to the identified characteristics. Combining the more personal beacon technology with the ACT will allow marketers to achieve the ‘Minority Report’ level of personalization – but only if our customers want it. It will be up to us to keep listening to them to balance promotion and privacy and foster good relationships.

For more information on our SXW2O events and speakers, please visit our website: http://w2oevents.com

Jim Weiss (CEO and Chairman – W2O Group) and Cathy Baron Tamraz (CEO – Businesswire) kicked off this afternoon with a PreCommerce Talk about Business Wire, which is the leading global commercial news wire.

Here is a summary of highlights of their discussion.

Cathy talked about how Business Wire now uses Content Capsules to share visual content along with news.  She talked about the importance of Business Wire’s reputation, much in keeping with the philosophy of their owner, Berkshire Hathaway and, of course Warren Buffet.  It is clear that Cathy treats the news of its clients as a treasured asset to be protected at all costs.  Right on.

The press release, by the way, is now 101 years old, according to Cathy.  Jim asked if the news release is still as important as it has been in the past.  Cathy gave the example that Apple utilized Business Wire to introduce its new watch.  Great way to answer the question succintly.

Jim discussed how W2O is partnering with Business Wire via NextWorks, led by Tim Bahr.  Cathy said that Intel is using the capsule, as well as Xerox, Cigna and more.  The key is that people are staying on the site for more than five minutes on average, which is far more important than counting clicks.  This portable website allows people to consume content anywhere, anytime and get the full story without having to travel to other locations.

In the Q&A, Cathy was asked “what about small companies who no one knows…what do they do?”  Cathy said you should not make the assumption that no one is watching….a release can be a great idea to get the word out for small businesses.  In fact, Business Wire built its business serving small companies that have grown up over the years, such as HP.  Jim added in that you can also identify the right influencers and keywords, so you help people find your story, which is important for any size company.  So if you are building a company out of your garage, Business Wire is an important part of your arsenal.

Jim ended with discussion of the concept of Storytizing…..and emphasized it is really about what others say about you, not what you say alone.  This speaks to the 1 and the 9 of the 1,9,90 model.  Empowering our audiences to tell our story is always the most powerful way to go.  Business Wire gets the word out….and great stories take it from there.  The fundamentals remain clear and simple.  The hard part is creating compelling content.  That’s on all of us.

Best, Bob

For more information on our SXW2O events and our speakers, please visit our website: http://w2oevents.com

Do you believe in the power of social media data to drive real world business results? Jason Rose of DataSift, Shree Dandekar of Dell and Darin Wolter of Sysomos answered this question at the PreCommerce Summit with a resounding yes. In their round table discussion, the gentlemen spoke of the power of meaningful measurement, the impact of social media on business and predictions for the future of social media data.

Trends to watch:

  • Availability of rich data from communities that have historically been walled gardens (Jason Rose): With the release of Facebook Topic Data on March 10, 2015 (in partnership with DataSift), businesses can now access vast conversation data about industries, brands, products, events, etc., offering a net new source of insights regarding audiences of interest. DataSift’s process protects the anonymity of end users, while allowing business users access to this business-critical information.

Measurement best practices:

  • Net Promoter score based on social data (Shree Dandekar): In traditional net promoter methodology, data is collected periodically, so marketers must wait for results. By using social media data as the basis of scoring, net promoter information is available in real time, and agile businesses can use the information to make real time adjustments to marketing. For example, Dell has used net promoter information to adjust product pricing leading to increased sales.
  • “Social+” measurement (Darin Wolter): Social measurement has evolved from vanity metrics to health metrics to influence tracking. We now use social data to understand how people are connected and how they influence one another. In combination with business metrics like sales or stock price, social measurement becomes even richer.

Predictions:

  • Interpreting sarcasm (Shree Dandekar):  Historically, coding for sarcasm has been problematic. Soon, there will be technologies that can solve for this.
  • The year of PESO (Darin Wolter): This will be the year of PESO (paid, earned, shared and owned) consolidation. Companies are realizing they can use owned and shared data to inform earned and owned data, and soon this will become standard.
  • Connecting CRM and social data (Shree Dandekar):  Combining this data helps the sales team better understand how to engage with a customer and helps us build our sales pipeline.

Thanks to our panelists for sharing their points of view. May your data be rich and  your insights be mighty.

Jason Rose (SVP Marketing – Datasift)

Bio: Jason Rose has been the Senior Vice President of Marketing at Datasift Inc. since May 2014. Rose joined Datasift from SAP where he led marketing for the world’s leading business intelligence platform. He joined SAP through the acquisition of Business Objects where he led senior roles to consolidate three acquisitions to build the company’s market leading corporate performance management portfolio. He has a depth of marketing experience to reach buyers looking to expand into data integration for other data sources.

Jason Rose

 

 

 

 

Shree Dandekar (Chief Strategist BI & Analytics – Dell)

Bio: Shree Dandekar has been at Dell for the past 14 years in a number of roles covering software design, product development, enterprise marketing and technology strategy. Currently, he is Director, Business Intelligence and Data Warehousing Strategy responsible for developing and driving the strategy for Dell’s Business Intelligence and Data Warehousing solutions

Shree Dandekar

 

 

 

 

 

Darin Wolter (EVP of Global – Sysomos)

Bio: Daron Wolter is the Executive Vice President of Sales at Sysomos. In 2004, Darin joined Marketwired as Vice President of Sales for its Western U.S. region. A former sales executive with Thomson Financial, Darin held key national management positions of Thomson’s Outbound Sales Team. Prior to Thomson (now Thomson Reuters), Darin held direct sales management roles at successfully acquired start-ups, StreetFusion and Questlink Technology, in addition to holding key advertising sales positions at Miller Freeman.

Darin Wolter

 

 

 

 

 

For more information on our SXW2O events and our speakers, please visit our website: http://w2oevents.com

Joining us for a panel this afternoon are Michael Fay, VP of Global Communications at IBM, Michele Skelding, SVP of Global Technology and Innovation for Austin Chamber of Commerce, and Jessica Williams, Global Innovations Marketing at Visa (bios below), to explore how companies adopt and scale innovation.  The panel was moderated by Josh Kampel, President of Techonomy.  I’ve tried to paraphrase the questions and answers in the panel below.

Q: What is Austin doing to foster innovation?  What are some of the characteristics you are seeing?

Skelding: There are 4800 high tech companies in greater Austin.  We look at net new jobs, organic formation of companies with big growth trajectories.  In 2014, 69 companies relocated to Austin, 17 came in 2008.  You can tell by the noise, cranes, hotel room space and traffic.  This is creating a divide between entrepreneurial companies wanting to be downtown and big companies like IBM.  Startups, incubators and innovation centers are all in the area, we have to figure out how to support them all.

Fay: This is a bridge to how we think about innovation – IBM is investing a lot in the transformation of IBM Interactive.  We also have an internal agency called IBM Design, headquartered in Austin. We hired 300 designers last year in Austin alone, with centers also in Japan, London, and Shanghai.  We are investing in Austin because of the talent. Every decade IBM needs to have a new version of itself.

Q: IBM has acquired over 125 companies in the last 15 years. How are you bringing innovation into the company?

Fay: Scale – we really legitimately have a presence in over 170 countries.  Watson has been an organic process that led to a series of product lines, with the same team working on the platform for several years together.  Most of the acquisitions have been small but are a fit culturally.  Sometimes partnerships are better for both companies to co-invest.  We also need to reinvent our talent at a big scale as we grow.

Q: Last week at Mobile World Congress (MWC), lots of partnerships were discussed. Visa made a big splash about ApplePay. Visa has invested 700 dedicated developers to work on ApplePay.  Why the investment and what is the long term goal?

Williams: It’s clearly a huge win for Visa to partner our brand with Apple. We believe it will be a cardless world in the future. ApplePay was the biggest investment aside from Visa Checkout last year.  Sooner or later everyone will be using phones to make payments, we have to stay ahead of that.  Visa is trying to rebuild relationships with merchants.  One challenge is that low conversion rates exist on mobile for purchasing, while there is still heavy useage for shopping. Visa Checkout is a one-click checkout solution targeting addressing that gap. ComScore shows conversions on mobile with VisaCheckout are at 69% – much higher than traditional methods.

Q: What industries are ripe for disruption?

Fay: A lot of disruption has already occurred.  For example, a couple years ago we were focused on big box retailers being disrupted with ecommerce.  People love experiences, so retailers need to adapt and innovate to create that experience still leveraging the big box stores.  Everything is now a technology business.

Q: In financial services, how are you looking at these technologies?

Williams: We believe payments is the next big industry to be disrupted.  The way people pay, get paid and get loans will change tremendously.  Visa just launched the connected car with Ford at MWC.

Q: You’re looking at early stage companies like Square as well?

Williams: We have a growing team of folks looking at companies that are early stage, figuring out how to work together, share ideas and explore investment opportunities.

Q: What industries do you see startups congregating on in Austin?

Skelding: We need innovation in transportation. 150 people move to the region daily. We don’t have a mass transport system.  We also have a new medical school. We look at modeling Cambridge, MA, building teaching hospitals and take the biggest ideas to help support knowledge capital and delivery in the region.  We want to grow beyond being known as the Music Capital and being weird – transitioning into the conversion of tech and life sciences.

Q: Kodak and Polaroid didn’t innovate fast enough. What companies are doing it right?

Williams: I think GoPro has done a good job at staying close to what is going on in the world.  Paypal has (unfortunately) done a great job, we look to them all the time as a model of an aggressive technology company.

Fay: We’ve spend time with AT&T creating the largest MOOC, instrumental in bringing broadband to Austin.  If you are in the expertise business, have to project boldly and aggressively.

Big thanks to the panelists for participating today.

 

 

 

Josh Kampel (President – Techonomy)

Bio: Josh joined Techonomy in the Spring of 2012 to oversee Techonomy’s business operations, planning and strategic partnerships. He has held senior positions in marketing, strategy and product development in both the digital media and financial technology industries. Most recently, Josh helped lauch OfferIQ, which was acquired in 2010 by Transactis, where he stayed on as Chief Marketing Officer.

Josh Kampel

 

 

 

 

Mike Fay (VP Global Communications – IBM)

Bio: Mike leads IBM’s global communications function.   He previously led marketing and communications for IBM Research and IP and has held a variety of positions in IBM corporate communications.  He joined the company through its acquisition of Sequent Computer Systems and previously worked in many capacities in tech communications.

Mike Fay

 

 

 

 

 

 

Michele Skelding (SVP Global Technoloy& Innovation – The Austin Chamber of Commerce)

Bio: Michelle is the Senior Vice President of Global Technology and Innovation for the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce where she leads the development and execution of the organization’s vision for Central Texas as a top global region for technology innovation, company formation and expansion, in addition to increasing top access to private equity and venture capital. Prior to the Austin Chamber, Michele served as Senior Director of Global Business Development, for Appconomy. Michele has also held senior positions with Lifeproof Cases, First Mobile Technologies, G-51 Capital, Augmentix Corporation, Dell and with AT&T’s executive leadership development program. Michele is an integral member of Austin’s entrepreneurial community, serving in leadership positions with the Central Texas Angel Network and as a mentor at Incubation Station.

Michele Skelding

 

 

 

 

 

Jessica Williams (Global Innovation Marketing – Visa)

Bio: Former Senior Analytics Manager at WCG. Experienced Leader with a strong background in social and digital media and analytical research who can translate data into strategic insights and actionable recommendations in order to enhance brand equity and drive effective social and digital marketing strategy.

Jessica Williams

 

 

 

 

 

For more information on our SXW2O events and our speakers, please visit our website: http://w2oevents.com

We closed out the PreCommerce Summit with a far-reaching heck of a futurist discussion when David Kirkpatrick’s interviewed VJ Joshi.

David: What did you do after leaving HP?

VJ: I wanted to learn about Healthcare and startups. Working with startups in terms both consulting and some investment.

David: What are you most excited about?

VJ: Data insights and intelligence; genomics, nanotechnology and robotics. Those trends will change everything. Those are the boundaries where innovation is going to happen.

VJ Joshi interview with David Kirkpatrick

David: Where are the advances? What kind of things are possible?

VJ: There’s progress in Tool automation; also getting into better understanding our subconscious. How we see things, how we feel things; virtual reality and Oculus Rift/ virtual reality; another area of interest: changing the neural pathways; How to change behavior (drug addicts)? Change the way of thinking, create new neural pathways.

Learning a language in two months, maybe even two days. How we learn can be enhanced dramatically. Not science fiction, things will happen within 10 years.

Think about the Terminator point of view; seeing related information about people in real time, customized ads in retail products, etc.

Augmented Reality: If kids can play with 3D models, that’s a way to enhance education; Magic Leap technology blending technology in real experience.

David: How is this relevant to Marketing?

VJ: Technology could enable new ways to reach an audience in ways that are deeper than we think about now: How can I affect a potential customer’s thought process?

Worth worrying about manipulation?

I’m on the optimistic side of the equation. Think of VR in terms of military tactical preparation. Understand people are concerned with privacy. But there are many possibilities.

David: Know you’re working with companies re: implants. Can you talk about it?

VJ: Cochlear implants are one example; Eye implants to affect rods and cones to improve vision; Ex: Rabbits can’t see red, but they can with these implant’s; Ex: Seeing through fog; improving upon our natural capabilities.

Increasing life extension, improving quality of life are health areas worth focusing on.

David: Intersection of technology and humans… how does automation and robotics displace jobs?

VJ: I have a more positive view, am more optimistic; it is complementary. We will learn important skills faster; It will enable us to work on more important things; solve bigger problems.

David: How does education change?

VJ: It opens up lifelong learning, no more 8 years of going to school. Replacing certain jobs will allow people to focus on solving hard problems. People will get more specialized learning, they will focus more on niche areas.

David: Regarding your years at HP: What was the best learning?

VJ: Take risks on people; empower them to focus on innovation; when I took over printing in 2001: people said you can’t grow. VJ thought they could grow 6% that year and beyond. We had great people to figure out higher-end printing; faster printing, 3D printing, etc.

Tech landscape: So many companies paralyzed by fear from innovation coming from startups. Do you worry about it?

I do worry about it. Companies aren’t focused enough on true innovation. Research is tied too close to earnings and profits these days. Too focused on the near term, meeting quarterly revenue and profit numbers.

David: End of industries: Traditional models don’t apply; Uber and Airbnb are disrupting businesses they arent even in. Do you believe big businesses should think about that? Definitely.

Audience Q&A:

Are you saying William Gibson right?

In terms of possiibilities, yes. Check out a company called Nanovision; William Gibson’s vision won’t be accurate, but aspects will be there.

What do you think about Facebook’s acquisition of Oculus Rift?

Augmented reality and virtual reality are sexy topics. Already real applications happening in military; repairing jets, VJ: seeing the manual while you are working; Facebook and others are thinking about next-generation computing technology;

David: virtual and augmented reality distinction will go away… when Zuckerberg bought Oculus, he said he was buying it’s the next generation of computing; Microsoft HoloLens. Google is working on similar technology. Started with Google Glass.

What about location-based technology?

More advances on current technology… Won’t need maps when visiting new cities; Dynamic ads that are tailored to you as an individual.

What about natural language speech recognition? Google Hiring Ray Kurzweil

VJ: Yes, it is huge, but it is related to virtual reality machines. Lots of peripherals will emerge, just like the PC space.

Linguistics based approach vs. Programming language approach; Microsoft and Google are working on real-time language translation. Effectiveness will continue to improve.

The next economy were all these technologies converge is the Molecular Economy. That’s where we are heading;

Google Glass: Going into a store seeing personalized ads; Creates privacy issues.  Are you concerned about that?

Would you wear glasses if they allowed you to see through fog? Yes. Adding useful capability is key.

Technology is in the hearts and minds of the people who use it. In your view, what are the threats to innovation;

David: Security is an issues. Macro-point of communication; ICANN is really worried that countries won’t use it; different standards; the app economy mirrors that from a content perspective; but app development is siloed; that fragmentation is real; VJ: I hope we are still appreciate nature; the beauty of outdoor activity and the physical world we live in. I hope we don’t ever lose our appreciation of that.

David Kirkpatrick (CEO – Techonomy)

Bio: Founder, host and CEO of Techonomy, David Kirkpatrick is a journalist, commentator about technology, and author of the bestselling book “The Facebook Effect: The Inside Story of the Company that is Connecting the World,” published in 32 countries. He spent 25 years at Fortune, and founded and hosted its Brainstorm and Brainstorm Tech conferences. Inaddition to writing to Techonomy, he contributes to Forbes and Vanity Fair. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

David Kirkpatrick

 

 

 

 

 

VJ Joshi (Former EVP Imaging & Printing – HP)

Bio: VJ Joshi served as an Executive Vice President of Imaging and Printing Group at Hewlett-Packard Company from 2002 to 2012, and served as its Executive Vice President of Imaging and Personal Systems Group. He retired in 2012 after a 32-year career at Hewlett Packard Company. Since 1989, he held various management positions in Imaging and Printing Systems, such as Phogenix Imaging LLC and Immy Inc.. He has been a Director of Harris Corporation, Director at Yahoo! Inc., and serves as a member of Dean’s Advisory Council at the Rady School of Management at the University of California, San Diego.

Vyomesh Joshi

 

 

 

 

 

For more information on our SXW2O events and speakers, please visit our website: http://w2oevents.com

Later in the afternoon, we had the pleasure of hearing from three dynamic and inspiring speakers leading first with Sean George, President & COO of Invitae, a genetic testing company doing groundbreaking work to push the field of genetic testing forward. Sean described the Invitae team as Genetic Enthusiasts dedicated to the pursuit of lowering costs and increasing access to genetic testing.

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Genetic Innovation

Sean’s talk was focused on educating the audience on the scale of the situation as well as the real-time progress being made in the field.

  • It’s the dawn of genetics in mainstream healthcare
  • It’s the convergence of genetics + technology + society
  • Up to 10% of people have a genetic disorder – the scale of the issue is massive
  • Accessibility to genetic testing is not limited to the future – it’s happening now
  • Patients have the right to self knowledge, particularly their genetic information
  • Barriers to progress are largely due to the “regulo-insuro-industrial complex”
  • The cost of genomic sequencing is sharply declining due to innovation – outpacing the impact of Moore’s law on the cost of computing
  • Team Invitae are relentless in their mission to improve the lives of billions of people on the planet

Engage or Die!

Ray Kerins, SVP & Head of Communications & Government Relations at Bayer, led a tough-love talk that stressed the need for firms to ‘engage or die’. His guidance to the audience was pragmatic and bold including the following key points:

  • Bayer is engaging with customers online because we have to – the use of social to identify those who talk about their company, and they engage with them online to take control of brand destiny
  • Kerins encourages his team to engage effectively – if someone has something to say about us, we had better do our best to make it personal
  • We have to do this because of the 5% not behaving well. The opportunity is there; It’s valid and good, but we should choose to do it, regardless of others making us do it or not.
  • This is total common sense to start with how to engage, not should we or shouldn’t we
  • If you let others take control of your reputation, you get what you deserve

 

The End of Persuasion

Finally, Daina Middleton, Head of Global Business at Twitter championed the idea that “Marketing through persuasion is over!” Daina’s key points included that:

  • There is a formula for participation in social: Discovery + Engagement or Empowerment + Connect = Participation & Performance
  • Marketing through persuasion is over – it takes more than just telling them we are right to convert and engage
  • Persuasion is out and participation is here to stay – if you have better participation, you have better performance
  • All of the metaphors we use to talk about marketing, are framed in war – not effective
  • But if you are trying to build relationships and nurture, you probably don’t want to go to war with your customers
  • Dana used Minecraft as an example of a product built with participation in mind

 

For more information on our SXW2O events and our speakers, please visit our website: http://w2oevents.com

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In case you weren’t able to livestream our 5th Annual PreCommerce Summit here in Austin, here is a quick summary of one of the sessions. First off was Chuck Hemann and his presentation on how to scale analytics within an organization, globally. Not an easy task for sure, especially within such a large brand like Intel. He offered some really helpful tips below and you can also read the transcripts from a previous interview we did with him.

  • Strong commitment from senior leadership
  • Willing and able partners in the GEOS
  • Metrics Standardization – framework that works everywhere
  • Common taxonomy for all media channels – content, paid social, search, ec.
  • Global capabilities stack
  • Stakeholder commitment to read, optimize on a similar cadence
  • Embracing the connected network versus hub and spoke

He concluded by highlighting how Intel is tackling this challenge:

  • The ability to work with even more speed
  • Bringing the data sources together to tell a comprehensive story
  • Protruding data in more challenging markets
  • Tools and Insights training
  • Developing analytics muscle memory and talent

Next up was Amber Naslund with an inspiring story about storytelling. She did this so effectively by sharing her professional journey from when she first started blogging, to joining Radian6, consulting for a few years and then to her current position with Sysomos.

My biggest takeaway from her session was when she talked about purpose; and how storytelling, whether personal or professional, should have purpose. Without it, storytelling will not inspire others and be doomed to fail. She said that one reason her consulting company failed was this lack of purpose.

The session concluded with Kip Knight who discussed brand storytelling. He started off his talk highlighting some pretty cool examples of campaigns where storytelling was the pinnacle – Allstate, Flo from Progressive Insurance, George Zimmer from the Men’s Warehouse, Most interesting man in the world – Dos Equis and the infamous Etrade Baby.

He then talked about H&R Block’s “Get Your Billions Back” campaign, which referenced the $300 billion dollars the IRS delivered in tax refunds in 2013. The campaign featured a bow-tie wearing spokesperson and H&R Block tax preparer, Richard Gartland and provided expert tax preparation advice to ensure clients receive the maximum refund possible from the IRS.

 

ABOUT THE PANELISTS

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 chuckChuck Hemann (Global Analytics Manager – Intel) – Scaling Digital Analytics Around the Globe Bio: Chuck Hemann is the Analytics Manager for Intel. Over the last 10 years, Chuck has provided strategic counsel to clients on a variety of topics including, digital analytics, measurement, online reputation, social media, investor relations and crisis communications. Prior to joining Intel, he was the Executive Director of Analytics at Golin where he was responsible for leading digital analytics across the agency. Before Golin, he was the Group Director of Analytics for W2O Group where he was responsible for leading teams in New York and London.

Amber NaslundAmber Naslund (SVP, Marketing – Sysomos) – Storytelling: Individual vs. Corporate Bio: Amber Naslund if the SVP of Marketing for Sysomos, a social intelligence platform. Amber’s 15+ years of professional expertise spans nonprofit management, corporate communications, marketing, professional services and social business strategy. She is the former president of SideraWorks and VP of Social Strategy for Salesforce Radian6, where she advised Fortune 500 companies, such as L’Oreal, Dell and American Express. Amber is also the co-author of the best-selling social business book, “The Now Revolution.”

 

Kip KnightKip Knight (President, US Retail Operations – H&R Block) – Who Speaks For Your Brand? BIO: Kip joined H&R Block in 2012 and currently serves as the President of U.S. Retail Operations. Knight’s 30-year career has included senior management and marketing positions with P&G, PepsiCo and eBay. Knight started in marketing research at Burke Marketing Research and has since worked in over 65 countries. He is the founder of the U.S. Marketing Communication College at the U.S. State Department that trains diplomats on marketing strategy and implementation. Knight is currently on the Board of Directors at Quiznos.

For more information on our SXW2O events and speakers, please visit our website: http://w2oevents.com