Tag Archive | "Transformation"

Transformation of Search Summit 2019: Highlight reel

On Friday we held the Transformation of Search Summit 2019 here in New York City. Huge thank you to all of our speakers, attendees, and sponsors who made the day a success!

In this article we’ve compiled some key quotes, stats, and otherwise tweetable highlights from the event.

Keynote: The transformation of search

First we heard from Carolyn Shelby, SEO Manager, Audience Development at the Walt Disney Company / ESPN.

One of the key quotes from her session was “The trick is to understand the psychology of people. Get in front of the consumer. That’s where search engines are going. What is the least amount of thinking that I can make a consumer do? How can I get them what they want the fastest?”

She also walked us through a brief SERP evolution, from collecting and organizing, to scoring / ranking relevancy, to now delivering immediate gratification.

The future of search is visual

Next up we heard from Michael Akkerman of Pinterest on the growth of visual search and its role in the future.

He talked about the evolution of consumer expectations, from physical stores, to digital convenience, to omnichannel promise, to the inspired shopping of today.

Where it once may have seemed that consumers were only focused on convenience, we’re now seeing the re-emergence of shopping and discovery in the consumer experience.

He also talked about the role of Pinterest in consumer discovery. On Pinterest, he says, they have billions of text-based searches every month. Of those, 90% are non-brand searches. “People don’t know what they want,” he says. For brands looking to focus on the discovery portion of the consumer journey, Pinterest could be a great option.

Michael was joined on stage by Dave Fall, CEO of BrandNetworks. They did a Q&A about what brands can do to get started with visual search.

For many brands, they said, it can feel like there’s a big barrier of entry or that it has to be a huge undertaking. But, they noted, remember that your brand does have visual assets already — think about what you use for your website, display ads, Amazon product listings, etc. Consider how you can re-purpose those to get started.

What DTCs and legacy brands can learn from each other 

Next we heard from Kerry Curran of Catalyst (GroupM). She talked about what brands can do to flip their performance marketing mindsets.

One particularly interesting finding she shared was that in campaigns, when brands communicate like a human, it can improve conversion by 900%.

She also noted that in the US, women over age 50 have $ 15 trillion in buying power. For many marketers, it might seem like younger generations have more appeal — but older generations have deeper pockets.

Embarking on a search transformation project

After this, we had a panel discussion on “embarking on a search transformation project.”

The panel included experts from Conde Nast, Microsoft, Mindshare, Volvo, and McKinsey.

John Shehata from Conde Nast shared some work they did to refresh and consolidate older content in order to boost keyword visibility by up to 1000%.

The challenge, as he pointed out, is that 90% of online content was created in the last two years, and 90% of that content gets no traffic. And, 50% of searches on Google end in no clicks. To face that, his team is working on taking past content, consolidating multiple pieces, and focusing on making each piece amazing.

Noel Reilly of Microsoft also touched on the speed at which new content is created. She encouraged marketers to think more broadly about what people want and are looking to discover. At Microsoft Ads, she said, 18% of queries each month are new queries.

When inputs are continuing to change so much, she recommended marketers really look at their search query reports to build content around those.

John Shehata of Conde Nast also spoke a bit about what they’re doing to prepare for voice search. Overall, he’s adopting a more conservative approach: investing a little, getting the foundation ready, and waiting for more clarity before diving into larger scale investment.

He likened the current discussion of voice search to the conversation about mobile a decade ago: “Remember when we said ‘mobile is here’ for ten years? But then it took ten years.”

And to wrap up from this session, we heard another great point from Noel of Microsoft: “The most successful brands I see are the ones putting people at the center of their advertising. Regardless of what the next big thing is in search, your job as a marketer is to understand your customer.”

Amazon search

Next we heard from John Denny with some interesting statistics and expert tips on Amazon search.

When it comes to how different generations search, he revealed that 52% of Gen Z named Amazon as their favorite site for shopping. The number two spot went to Nike, who claimed just 4% of votes — putting Amazon at 13 times that.

He also discussed three of the main options CPG brands have for driving purchases / traffic: a brand’s own website, a brand’s detail page on Amazon, and in-store traffic.

For the largest 100 CPG brands out there, he said, there was five times more traffic on the Amazon detail page plus in-store than there was on the brand’s own website.

His message: for brands not on Amazon, might be time to consider it.

Optimizing for voice search

Next, we heard another panel, this time specifically on voice search, from Mastercard, Synup, and Advantix Digital.

While earlier in the day we heard a more cautious perspective from Conde Nast, this panel was a bit more bullish on voice search.

Synup CEO Ashwin Ramesh gave one interesting rationale around the rapid adoption of voice search globally in countries like India, Indonesia, and parts of Southeast Asia. In India, he says, 50% of all searches are already done via voice. “They’re leapfrogging markets,” he said. He also gave the personal example that his grandmother — she doesn’t type and has never used a computer, but she sends him voice messages via her iPad.

Paradigm shifts in search

After this we heard from Stephen Kraus, Head of Digital Insights at Jumpshot. He shared many interesting statistics about the current state of the search industry and how it’s shifting.

90% of all search happens on Google, he says, and it skews branded (unlike on Pinterest). Of the top ten most used search terms on Google in the past couple months, seven are brands: Google, Facebook, Amazon, YouTube, Walmart, Craigslist, and BMW.

The other three, interestingly, were “you,” “weather,” and “news.”

While 90% of all search happens on Google, when it comes to product-related search, 54% happens on Amazon.

Stay tuned for part two with highlights from the afternoon sessions, as well as some deep dives into specific insights!

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The Transformation of Search Summit 2019: Speakers, agenda, FAQ

On October 25, 2019, Search Engine Watch will host the second annual Transformation of Search Summit, in partnership with ClickZ. The event will take place at Convene in Midtown, New York City.

To see highlights from last year’s event, check out this roundup of the sessions or these presentations.

Transformation of Search Summit 2019 speakers + agenda

We’ve gathered a great list of search marketing pros to share their knowledge and experience at this event.

transformation of search summit 2019 speakers

Carolyn Shelby from the Walt Disney Company will kick off the morning sharing insights from her work as SEO Manager of Audience Development. She’ll explore overarching trends in search and what we can expect to change in the next year. From the shift from search to discovery to the changing balance of paid versus organic, from data concerns to the changing consumer journey, this session will touch on key themes all marketers should keep top of mind.

Michael Akkerman of Pinterest will follow with Dave Fall of BrandNetworks in a session titled “You’ll Know it When You See it: The Future of Ecommerce is Visual.” Together, they’ll discuss how marketers can inspire consumers and bring magic back to sometimes impersonal online experiences. What options exist for brands looking to create more visual discovery of their products and services?

Courtney Messerli of Goop will give expertise on optimizing for YouTube. As the second largest search engine with more than 1.9 billion monthly users, YouTube offers a huge opportunity for brands to expand their reach. She’ll give insight on video optimization as well as expectations for the role of video in the future of search.

Other speakers include:

  • John Shehata, VP of Audience Development Strategy at Conde Nast
  • Noël Reilly, Strategic Account Director at Microsoft
  • Guillaume Conteville, SVP, Global Digital Marketing at Mastercard
  • John Denny, VP Ecommerce & Digital Marketing at CAVU Venture Partners
  • Allen Hammock, Global Strategist for Search at Kenshoo
  • Kerry Curran, Managing Partner, Marketing Integration, Catalyst (GroupM)
  • Stephen Kraus, Head of Digital Insights at Jumpshot

Why should you attend this event?

What makes the Transformation of Search Summit special, you ask?

By attending this event, you’ll be able to:

  • Connect with 350+ senior search, digital, and ecommerce marketers from global brands
  • Hear from renowned experts from across the industry
  • Participate in an unparalleled, unique platform to dissect the current landscape
  • Be immersed into a strategic deep-dive into the future of search marketing
  • Share actionable search tactics on how you can capitalize on and protect your business from digital advances
  • Collaborate with your peers about where the industry predicts search is heading
  • Take away real insights designed to address your business needs

Last year, 59% of attendees were business leaders (C-level, partner, VP) and directors from across four continents.

To view a sample of this year’s delegate list, see here.

Who should attend?

We’ve designed this event to be equal parts strategic and tactical, designed for senior leaders as well as practitioners.

This might include:

  • C-suite leaders looking to understand the changing role that search plays within their organizations
  • Head/Director/SVP/VP of Marketing looking to understand the changing role of search in customers’ paths to purchase, impact of technologies on performance, spend, ROI, budgeting, etc.
  • Head/Director/SVP/VP of Search/SEO/PPC looking to understand the impact of new technologies and consumer trends on how to best evolve their search marketing strategies

transformation of search summit 2019 who should attend

Industries represented span publishing, retail/ecommerce, SaaS, agencies, consultancies, financial services, and more.

Last year saw attendees from brands including Amazon, Sprint, Adobe, L’Oreal, Yext, KPMG, J.P. Morgan, Xerox, Bloomberg, and Wunderman, among many others:

past attendees of transformation of search summit, examples of brands

When / where?

This one-day event will take place at a lovely venue called Convene, located in Midtown Manhattan at 46th St and 6th Ave.

Sessions will run from 9am to 5pm, and will be followed by a drinks reception.

Lunch, snacks, coffee, etc. will be served throughout the day.

Thank you to our partners

This event wouldn’t be what it is without the support of our partners:

  • Catalyst
  • Fospha
  • Kenshoo
  • Jumpshot
  • SEOClarity
  • Synup

And we’d like to extend a big thank you to each of them.

Where can I learn more about the event?

To see a full rundown of agenda, speakers, sponsors, and tickets, check out the Transformation of Search Summit website.

We look forward to seeing you there!

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Business Prioritizing Digital Transformation For Competitive Advantage, Says Equinix CEO

“We’re seeing right now continued strength across our business because people are prioritizing digital transformation as a way to gain competitive advantage,” says Equinix CEO Charles Meyers. “The reality is people who are responding well to that are thriving and people that are not are being left behind. What companies (like Walmart) are doing essentially is using a hybrid and multi-cloud strategy. They have private infrastructure that they may house in a significant caged environment at Equinix but they interface it then with the public clouds.”

Charles Meyers, CEO of Equinix, discusses their huge under the radar role in facilitating the massive digital transformation in progress with companies worldwide. Meyers was interviewed by Jim Cramer on CNBC:

There’s A Very Deep Demand Pool For Data Centers

We continue to see a really strong set of underlying secular demand drivers for the business. We’re seeing real strength in the business globally right now. Broadly, we’ve seen the sector respond very well. We think there’s a very deep demand pool for data centers. I do think that Equinix plays a very unique role in the market and our differentiated position is allowing us to even outperform relative to our peers. Public cloud adoption is a major catalyst for our business. As enterprises are adopting public cloud and looking at hybrid and multi-cloud as their architecture of choice we’re seeing really strong demand.

We may not be a household name but I think it’s pretty safe to say we’re probably impacting the lives of millions of consumers on a day to day basis working with (many big-name companies such as Salesforce and Netflix). We play a very important role in terms of interconnecting our customers sometimes to public cloud providers, sometimes to SAAS providers like Salesforce, sometimes to other members of their supply chain, and sometimes to networks. A really big part of our legacy and history has been interconnecting people to networks. The interconnection story is a really central piece of the Equinix story.

Equinix Is The Best Representation Of The Digital Edge

Equinix is in fact the best representation of the digital edge today. That is the point at which people are interconnecting their private infrastructure with public cloud infrastructure, with networks, and with other members of their supply chain. When you hear about edge, oftentimes that edge is in fact within an Equinix facility and being interconnected over private interconnection facilities that are facilitated by Equinix.

Typically, when inside one of our facilities, we’re unlike some wholesalers which might have one or a very small number of customers, we tend to have a larger number of customers in any individual facility. They are distributed across the site typically in private cages or sometimes in shared caged environments or shared rack environments and they have their equipment. They’re all obviously very secured and something that’s available just for them to access. But they’re all across the facility. You typically wouldn’t be able to see who the customer is because they are very sensitive about that from a security standpoint.

Firms Prioritizing Digital Transformation For Competitive Advantage

We’re seeing right now continued strength across our business because people are prioritizing digital transformation as a way to gain competitive advantage. The reality is people who are responding well to that are thriving and people that are not are being left behind. So we’re seeing strong demand. I think the trade tensions, etc. probably affects some level of sentiment but we have not seen that impact the demand profile for our business.

What companies (like Walmart) are doing essentially is using a hybrid and multi-cloud strategy. They have private infrastructure that they may house in a significant caged environment at Equinix but they interface it then with the public clouds. They’re using a variety of public clouds to house some of their workloads. So that hybrid multi-cloud environment is really the architecture of choice for enterprise customers of all sorts. Retail is actually an incredibly strong segment for us. That architecture of choice, hybrid and multi-cloud, is a major driver for Equinix’s business.

Business Prioritizing Digital Transformation For Competitive Advantage – Equinix CEO Charles Meyers

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VMware Is Now a Platform For Digital Transformation, Says CEO

“We believe that our conversations now have gone from targeted to holistic to be this platform for their digital transformation,” says VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger. “That core idea of how do they get to that digital future, that’s not an IT discussion anymore, that’s a business strategy conversation. That’s why we are seeing this real uplift in the position in the conversation that we are having with customers globally.”

Pat Gelsinger, CEO of VMware, discusses how VMware has become a complete digital transformation platform for companies in an interview on CNBC:

VMware Is Now a Platform For Digital Transformation

We believe that our conversations now as we’ve expanded from selling compute Hypervisor to a complete cloud infrastructure, complete end-user computing, a transformation of their network and security offerings, our conversations have gone from targeted to holistic to be this platform for their digital transformation. That core idea of how do they get to that digital future, that’s not an IT discussion anymore, that’s a business strategy conversation.

That’s why we are seeing this real uplift in the position in the conversation that we are having with customers globally. As we’ve positioned in the past, as people move to the full VMware offering that is a multiplier. A company or an institution that is using us as a Hypervisor, now the full cloud stack of network, compute, management, and automation, that is a business expansion opportunity for us.

VMware Seeking Ability To Be a Government Cloud Provider

As I said on the (earnings) call we are now in the FedRAMP High process. We are seeking that ability to be a cloud provider for the government and many of the government. Many of the government in defense and intelligence are big VMware footprints. We see this as a great opportunity. We are in process to get approval. As the JEDI contract gets resolved we hope to be able to be positioned with Amazon and Azure, given our relationships with both.

Even as our preferred relationship with Amazon is very strong we do see this ability for us to participate for government business being an essential element of our multi-cloud strategy where Amazon, Azure, IBM, and our other cloud partners all give us a great opportunity to participate for government contracts.

VMware Is Now a Platform For Digital Transformation, Says CEO Pat Gelsinger

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Box CEO: Digital Transformation Driving Global Growth

The digital transformation which has been powering the growth of many technology companies in the US is now starting to drive growth globally according to Box CEO Aaron Levie. He says that Box has a global opportunity where multi-national enterprises want to drive the same digital transformation that has been happening in the US.

Aaron Levie, Box CEO, discussed on CNBC how the digital transformation is key to driving Box’s growth globally.

Digital Transformation Driving Global Growth

As our business gets more seasonally loaded toward the back end of the year as we sell to larger and larger enterprises. That’s what ultimately drives a much higher billings growth outcome in Q4. We continue to move up-market serving larger enterprises like major top ten banks, pharmaceuticals, life sciences companies, as well as the federal government and global manufacturers. That’s what’s driving that surge in Q4 billings and growth rate.

We have a global opportunity where large enterprises, especially multi-national enterprises, want to drive the same digital transformation that we’ve seen in the US. That means everything from changing their business processes to collaborating and working in new ways which leads them to need platforms like Box and other technologies. We are seeing incredible growth in markets like Japan, Canada, Australia, and throughout Europe.

Our Partner Model is Critical to Our Success

We are working with major partners like IBM and other system integrators to be able to reach and enable customers. We are working with technology partners like Microsoft, Google, as well as a much broader ecosystem including companies like Slack, Okta, and others, to ensure that when customers want to modernize their IT environment Box is the system of record for the data and content that they work with.

Partners are core to our strategy both from a technology standpoint to ensure that customers have an integrated experience with their information technology investment as well as helping us actually reach those customers from a distribution and sales standpoint. Our partner model is critical to our success.

We Are Building a Fundamentally Open Platform

Our fundamental belief is that in the digital age enterprises are going to need a platform to help them secure, manage, govern, and drive the workflows around their core business information. That is what the platform is that we’re building. Whether it’s financial documents, digital assets, a pharmaceutical company with their drug trial information, or an ad company with their ad campaigns, we want to be the platform that helps them manage and secure that data.

We will have to work with technology partners like Microsoft, Google, IBM, and others to ensure that the technology that they’re investing in can link to the data that customers store within Box. We are building a fundamentally open platform and whether that is linking up to the artificial intelligence or machine learning technology that IBM, Microsoft, Google, and others are building or the common applications that we use every day we want to ensure that Box can connect to all of those applications so that you can have one source of truth for your data but integrated everywhere.

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Box CEO: Digital Transformation Driving Global Growth

The digital transformation which has been powering the growth of many technology companies in the US is now starting to drive growth globally according to Box CEO Aaron Levie. He says that Box has a global opportunity where multi-national enterprises want to drive the same digital transformation that has been happening in the US.

Aaron Levie, Box CEO, discussed on CNBC how the digital transformation is key to driving Box’s growth globally.

Digital Transformation Driving Global Growth

As our business gets more seasonally loaded toward the back end of the year as we sell to larger and larger enterprises. That’s what ultimately drives a much higher billings growth outcome in Q4. We continue to move up-market serving larger enterprises like major top ten banks, pharmaceuticals, life sciences companies, as well as the federal government and global manufacturers. That’s what’s driving that surge in Q4 billings and growth rate.

We have a global opportunity where large enterprises, especially multi-national enterprises, want to drive the same digital transformation that we’ve seen in the US. That means everything from changing their business processes to collaborating and working in new ways which leads them to need platforms like Box and other technologies. We are seeing incredible growth in markets like Japan, Canada, Australia, and throughout Europe.

Our Partner Model is Critical to Our Success

We are working with major partners like IBM and other system integrators to be able to reach and enable customers. We are working with technology partners like Microsoft, Google, as well as a much broader ecosystem including companies like Slack, Okta, and others, to ensure that when customers want to modernize their IT environment Box is the system of record for the data and content that they work with.

Partners are core to our strategy both from a technology standpoint to ensure that customers have an integrated experience with their information technology investment as well as helping us actually reach those customers from a distribution and sales standpoint. Our partner model is critical to our success.

We Are Building a Fundamentally Open Platform

Our fundamental belief is that in the digital age enterprises are going to need a platform to help them secure, manage, govern, and drive the workflows around their core business information. That is what the platform is that we’re building. Whether it’s financial documents, digital assets, a pharmaceutical company with their drug trial information, or an ad company with their ad campaigns, we want to be the platform that helps them manage and secure that data.

We will have to work with technology partners like Microsoft, Google, IBM, and others to ensure that the technology that they’re investing in can link to the data that customers store within Box. We are building a fundamentally open platform and whether that is linking up to the artificial intelligence or machine learning technology that IBM, Microsoft, Google, and others are building or the common applications that we use every day we want to ensure that Box can connect to all of those applications so that you can have one source of truth for your data but integrated everywhere.

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