3 Sneak Peeks into Smart Social Summit Speakers You Won't Want to Miss

It’s time to get into gear for Smart Social Summit 2017. In less than one month, some of the smartest minds in the space will join together under one roof to discuss the captivating present and revolutionary future of social as we know it. We sat down with these three speakers to take a look behind the curtain of what they have in store.

Julia Heiser, EVP, Digital Marketing at Live Nation

Julia Heiser oversees Live Nation’s Digital marketing team and has a knack for maintaining perpetual creativity. Whether pitching managers, agents or the creators themselves, Julia & her team are focused on expanding Live Nation’s digital media arsenal so that the fan in all of us never misses another show.

What she’ll be speaking on: Tomorrow's Customer Experience is Happening Today: What Content for Modern Consumers Looks Like

On why she’s stoked about the topic:

First of all, what a fun topic. Content is king, and the opportunity to be relevant, creative and revolutionary is endless. We live in a content consuming world- from the snackable memes and GIFs, to long form engaging/emotion triggering video formats. We live in a world constantly thriving to be entertained. But entertained, with impact.

Content is king, and the opportunity to be relevant, creative and revolutionary is endless.


On why she can’t wait for Smart Social Summit:

Who isn’t excited about nonstop social conversation? We live in a 24/7 social world, and we are only as good at marketing as we are at understanding what the best in the business are doing to push the envelope. There are many companies attending that blow me away with their social and content strategy on the regular, so I can’t wait to soak up as much insight as possible.

On social’s next big trend:

Quite simply: artificial intelligence (AI). There are bounds of opportunities to improve customer service and engagement through Chatbots and machine learning, add depth, personalization and interactivity to content—in ways that a year ago we never thought were possible.

Editor's note: Due to unforeseen circumstances, Avery Block will not be able to join us at Smart Social Summit 2017.

Avery Block, Manager, Digital Customer Care at Taco Bell

Avery is the Digital Customer Care Manager for Taco Bell, leading the strategy and innovation for all customer care programs with an emphasis on expanding Taco Bell’s digital and social care footprint. Honing her Live Más spirit, she leads her team to consistently deliver a social care experience that is uniquely Taco Bell.

What she’ll be speaking on: Agents, Bots, and Where They Meet: The Next Iteration of Social Customer Care

On why she’s stoked about the topic:

What excites me most is finding the right balance. The ongoing transition of customer service from traditional channels to social media will only continue to influence needs and expectations. Customers today want easy access to brands and are conditioned to instant gratification.

Customers today are conditioned to instant gratification.


Yes, automation and leveraging technology is a cost-effective strategy that creates efficiencies and enables us to better meet the ever-changing needs of our customers. But, what will automation’s impact be on loyalty and brand reputation? Is there a point in the customer service model where automation just can’t beat the value and relevancy of human interaction? The truth is, we need both (and more!) to deliver exceptional customer care and there likely isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. The thought leadership and continued dialogue around identifying the balance between tech and human is definitely what I’m most excited about.

On why she can’t wait for Smart Social Summit:

I’m fairly new to the Spredfast community so I’m definitely looking forward to connecting with leaders and change-agents from several brands I greatly respect and admire. In reality, we’re all working towards the same common goals but I’m fascinated by all the different paths each brand takes to get there.

On social’s next big trend:

Content. And I wouldn’t call it a trend as much as it will be an evolution. The fight for consumer attention is increasingly more challenging. Are attention spans really shorter today or has content just become status quo and lost its captivating edge? What’s it going to take to rise above the distractions? Personalization? Mobile optimization? More video? We’ll see!

Charlie Grinnell, Head of Social Media at Aritzia

Charlie leads Aritzia’s presence on social media platforms and is responsible for driving strategic priorities and social initiatives across the business. Hailing from a strong digital marketing background, most recently leading Red Bull’s global social strategy for sports initiatives, Charlie knows what it takes to craft and optimize content that performs.

What he’ll be speaking on: Tomorrow's Customer Experience is Happening Today: What Content for Modern Consumers Looks Like

On why he’s stoked about the topic:

As someone with a background in video production, it has been fascinating to watch how video has taken over social media and the internet as a whole in such a relatively short amount of time. When I first started making videos 10 years ago, I never imagined that I would work on the distribution side of things so I am excited to discuss how close the relationship between production and distribution needs to be and how that ultimately impacts the final product.

On why he can’t wait for Smart Social Summit:

Meeting people and learning how they perceive everything in the world of social media. I really enjoy listening to how others are approaching similar challenges that I face in my day-to-day, whether it be new platform features or working cross functionally with other departments, etc.

On social’s next big trend:

There are too many trends to list but if I had to narrow it down it would be: The maturation of the Stories format as a whole—content will increasingly be consumed as skippable, bite–sized photo/video slideshows. Prioritizing depth of engagement over width of engagement—it used to be about going “viral” on social media but one size doesn’t fit all and now it’s about emotionally impacting your audience on a 1-to-1 level.

Learn even more—and avoid an acute case of keynote FOMO—by snagging a spot at Smart Social Summit today.

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Caitlin Cavanaugh is the Brand Marketing Manager for Spredfast, where she spends her time building the world’s most #SmartSocial brand through the power of customer voice. When she’s not chasing a revolutionary success story, you can find her embarking on her next hunting or fishing expedition or baking up a fresh batch of chocolate chip cookies.