SAScon 2017 – Winners’ Highlights

From ballsy content and intellectual curiosity to Spiderman Jokes with Amazon’s Alexa, it had it all!

SAScon is a Search, Analytics and Social Media Conference. Hosted over 2 days, it focuses on presenting case studies to digital and communications professionals from varied sectors.

I arrived at SAScon and wasn’t 100% sure what to expect but if there’s one thing I’ve learnt in my early career at Winners, it’s to expect the unexpected! My day began by helping Jon Burkhart, who manages his own marketing agency combined with being a keynote speaker at various events.

I had only met Jon the previous day, enjoying lunch at a local but famous burger outlet. I was immediately in awe of his stories and his ability to make me feel like I had known him for years.

His talk focused on the need to be ‘ballsy’ with your content and being intellectually curious. He handed out ‘SAScon Pig Headed Awards’ for those ‘ballsy’ enough to shout answers out. These were squeaky pig toys with bouncy balls taped to their noses (created by myself before the event started)! Intellectual curiosity is something we are not unfamiliar with at Winners. We act as consultants to some of our clients to provide industry leading insight and advice to accelerate their CRM journey.

Another highlight from the day was Renee Mellow, Head of Emerging Digital Activation for the EMEA region at MediaCom, with her discussion of artificial intelligence (AI). Some of the stats Renee shared were mind-blowing, and would never have crossed my mind - such as ‘70% of 18-34-year-olds use AI.’ I didn’t expect to hear such a high number, particularly as we’re just about getting used to an Amazon Alexa in the Winners office.

When Renee brought out an Alexa to the stage, I knew it was going to get more than interesting. Renee managed to get a member of the audience on to the stage and asked Alexa to tell Spiderman jokes.  Although the ‘jokes’ didn’t quite live up to my expectations, it surprised me how adaptable Alexa can be.  The power of the device is incredible and I’m looking forward to seeing the technology grow. It just goes to show the power of data – we’re just waiting to see if the Alexa in the office will start tailoring its output for a sports-loving audience.

A quote of the day that engaged with my curiosity was, ‘If you have an Alexa in your home, you'll spend 10% more on Amazon’. This shows personalised communications lead to increased spending - something we at Winners help our rightsholders to implement. It was a fascinating learning experience and one that I would relish the opportunity to attend in the future!

To discuss this further, or if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me personally via Twitter, or contact Winners today.