Share16 has now officially wrapped up after some more exciting keynotes and engaging breakout sessions. The conference brought together some of the most talented minds in the industry and created an environment with great energy and a fantastic exchange of ideas.
The morning Share16 keynote
The morning of the third and final day of Share16 began with a great keynote presentation from Joyce Boland and Kelvin Gee of Oracle as well as Rachna Sethni of Facebook. Both brands discussed how marketing has transformed their organizations over the past few years and where they see themselves going. Oracle, the world’s largest enterprise software company, explored how it shifted its strategy and even its core culture, in response to the rise of modern technology and marketing. Facebook spoke about how quickly mobile has overtaken other media forms and how convenient it can be for users when everything comes together on a mobile device. Sethni says that Facebook is working to develop apps and capabilities to better bring customers and brands together, creating a superior experience for all.
The Search Track at Share16
S104: Technical Site Configuration: SEO Friendly Design, Build & Infrastructure Austin Kane Austin Kane, the Senior Manager of Search Marketing at John Wiley & Sons, spoke about the importance of valuing technical SEO. He explained that brands also need to have a proactive mindset, not just a reactive one. This means they should pay attention to strategies that can help them grow, rather than just trying to fix problems as they appear. Mark Munroe Mark Munroe is the Founder and CEO of SEORadar. He reminded us that sometimes it can feel as though you have too many cooks in the kitchen when you are trying to design a website. Munroe also spoke about how easily things can go wrong with websites, but that sometimes it can be hard to understand what exactly changed He recommends implementing monitoring processes and having deep visibility into the website. Jacqueline Urick Jacqueline Urick, the Head of SEO for Pampered Chef, reminded us all that the developers on our teams are people, too! Improving communication can go a long way in helping everyone work together, as well as understanding the goals and pressing concerns of the different groups. Dashboards in particular can be helpful to show progress on SEO projects and to help developers understand your needs. S105: Global and Local Search: SEO, PPC, and Social Synergy Collin Colburn Collin Colburn is a researcher at Forrester Research. He spoke about the importance of creating a frictionless, anticipatory, and immersive marketing experience in the world of post-digital marketing. He drove home the point that marketers really need to do what they say; customers are not nearly as interested in what we say as they are in what we do. Consumers today are interested in personalized messages, rather than general broadcasts, and they want brands that understand the value of being human, helpful, and handy. Chad Hallert Chad Hallert is the Director of Digital Strategy at Noble Studios. He explained to the room the importance of genuinely integrating your teams. Integration requires actual change in your output, not just adding numbers together on a document. When paid search and SEO work together, for example, they can achieve great results. The data we get from the various silos and departments in our organization can all benefit others. Looking at the micro-moments in the consumer journey can also help brands identify opportunities for integration by understanding the types of content most likely to benefit customers. S106: Insights from In-House Experts: Technical Tactics & Conversion Strategies This was a question and answer opportunity with the talented Alex Bullo, the Digital Marketing Manager for SEO & Audience Acquisition at Salesforce; Kirill Kronrod, the manager of Global SEO & Search Analytics at Adobe, and Heather Mezzeta the Sr. Marketing Manager SEO at Sephora. They fielded questions from the audience, covering a range of topics, including HTTPS, scaling SEO in-house, MP, and the importance of data when communicating SEO value to those higher in the organization. The group also mentioned that the areas they are most interested in watching as we prepare to head into 2017 will be AMP in ecommerce, voice search and digital personal assistants, and artificial intelligence.
The Content Optimization and Digital Integration Track at Share16
CO204: The Search, Social, and Content Marketing Trifecta: Digital Branding & PR Rachel Freeman Rachel Freeman, the Director of Integrated Marketing and Digital at Centrify spoke about the impact of PR on SEO. In particular, she touched upon how customers make many queries before actually engaging with a brand, so having a strong brand awareness is critical. When SEO and PR work together to establish consistent communication, they can see great results. Clark Boyd Clark Boyd, the VP of Strategy at Croud, explored the ideas of impulses, habits, and emotions together. He said that there is often too much information and not enough meaning. Brands need to be thinking about improving user engagement and moving towards meaningful content measurements. We need to think beyond immediate interactions, and instead see the big picture. Bringing different disciplines together can help with tracking important metrics and understanding the impact of the content produced. Chris Attewell Chris Attewell, the SVP Americas at Search Laboratory, described the results that can be achieved when SEO and PR are brought together. When brands correctly factor PR into the rest of the marketing discipline, they can produce great results in key areas such as awareness, engagement, and market share. Attewell believes that brands should not let themselves get lost in flashy campaigns and lose sight of methods that have been shown to work, including link building. CO2015: Managing Multiple Digital Channels: Finding The Perfect Mix Cindy Phan Cindy Phan, the Senior Manager of Digital Demand Strategy at VMware, delved into the idea of managing multiple digital channels. VMware has a personalized digital framework to help them understand the audience and segment them for more effective marketing. She spoke about the importance of using 1st Party Data as a means of validating statistics on conversion and campaign performance and always outlining the goals and KPIs of campaigns before they begin. Paul Williams Paul Williams, the VP Director at Performics, explored the importance of understanding intent in the cross-channel experience. He believes that intent is the single largest performance marketing variable, which shapes queries and dictates purchase paths. He also spoke about the shift away from direct response campaigns-- like with television ads expecting people to call, to indirect response-- when customers respond by adjusting their online searches. Allen Nance Allen Nance, the CMO at Emarsys, spoke about finding the right mix between computer automation and human marketing. Data is our most valuable asset, and one day machines will be able to deliver 1:1 personalized marketing. We already use machine learning regularly, and as we rethink the role of the marketer, it will become more prominent.
The Business & Career Elevation Track at Share16
BE304: The Digital Marketing Mind: The Psychology of Self Development Dave Lloyd Dave Lloyd is the Principal Consultant of Optimization and Personalization at Adobe. He spoke about aligning personal goals with the company and team to help you grow both within your personal skill set and in your career. He addressed the importance of asking for feedback and being willing to revisit data. Lloyd also touched upon the importance of using creative storytelling to get buy-in from executives. Adam Audette Adam Audette, the SVP of SEO at Merkle, spoke about the “digital mind” and hacks to grow your career. In his 8 step career algorithm, he explored the importance of actually ‘doing’, following great leads, and not being afraid to make mistakes or ask for help. Mel Carson Mel Carson, the US Brand Ambassador for Majestic and the founder of Delightful Communications, discussed the importance of building a personal brand. By doing so, professionals can make themselves more discoverable, shareable, and memorable. This involves thinking about how you fit in your team, how to project your expertise and skills, and making the right connections. BE305: Organizational Design: Building Digital Centers of Excellence Mauricio Moreno Mauricio Moreno, the Director of SEO at Revana Digital, spoke about how to build “Centers of Excellence” and how they are integral to SEO success. Brands need to focus on three stages: pre-content generation, content generation, and analysis. This means identifying the audience and doing the research needed to know what they want to see, creating content that answers those needs, and then watching for good results during analysis. Eric Hess and Ryan Rickets Eric Hess and Ryan Rickets, Program Managers of SEO at REI, addressed the idea of splitting up SEO into Content and Technical Aspects. The two of them are a team where one handles the technical and one handles the content and they find that the system works well by leveraging the strengths of each. Garrett Mehrguth Garrett Mehrguth, the CEO of Directive Consulting, spoke about the importance of moving quickly and regularly testing. He believes that testing inputs is essential to SEO. Inputs must be measurable to be used. Mehgruth notes that there is no failing in SEO, there is only learning.
Closing Keynote at Share16
After finishing up these incredible sessions, we all gathered together again to hear the closing keynote speeches, and they were worth the wait. We first heard from the Gold-Level sponsor for the event, Chris Bennett of 97th Floor. He explored with us the idea of digital distress, that countless marketers do not feel confident in their own digital marketing abilities, or those of their organizations. He also delved into the growing importance of featured snippets and the impact they can have on traffic and brand presence. They also can offer a variety of information, including cost quotes-- effectively bringing people through much of the sales funnel before they even click on your site. Bennett also explained the concept of TF-IDF (Term Frequency-Inverse Document Frequency) and how even though this is a part of Google’s patent, it is still severely underutilized by marketers. Thao Tran of Google then took the stage and spoke about the latest on the mobile web. This included discussing one of the goals of Google: to help users have a frictionless mobile experience. AMP will also ideally be compatible with a variety of different types of sites, helping all mobile users experience the fast loading sites. According to Tran, there are already 700k websites that use AMP. Tran spoke about the rise of the progressive web app, where brands can help their users have a positive experience, even offline or if they have a spotty internet connection. Many of the pioneering web apps that Tran used as examples actually originated outside the US, but American brands are expected to begin leveraging the technology soon as well. Brands can also equip their apps with capabilities like a credential manager. Ninety-two percent of customers will just give up if they forget their user name or password, and equipping the app to remember the customer when they open this page can help cut back that attrition rate. On the issue of the secure web, she also did not leave any room for discussion when she said, “HTTPS is now the web standard. The future of the web is a secure one.” We are still feeling excited and invigorated after such an exciting week at Share16. We want to extend another warm thank you to all of our sponsors and speakers. It was wonderful to have your input and your help in making this conference so incredible. We hope that all of our attendees had as much fun as we did and we hope to see you all again next year at Share17! Learn about VSO or Vertical Search Optimization.