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The Tech Blog Writer Podcast

Author: Neil C. Hughes

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Fed up with tech hype? Looking for a tech podcast where you can learn from tech leaders and startup stories about how technology is transforming businesses and reshaping industries?

In this daily tech podcast, Neil interviews tech leaders, CEOs, entrepreneurs, futurists, technologists, thought leaders and celebrities about how tech trends such as AI, machine learning, blockchain, crypto, and the digital transformation is already reshaping our world.

Neil also shares startup stories in a series of startup interviews about technology trends, innovation in this top-rated daily tech podcast.
860 Episodes
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Imagine started eight years ago with a grand vision: to connect the global eCommerce community. Today, it brings together 3,000+ eCommerce experts, including merchants, agencies, and technology providers from over 50 countries. Gary Specter, VP Commerce Sales, and Customer Success, Experience Business, Adobe addressed the audience at Imagine 2019 by saying "The magic and power of Magento comes from all of you. Our biggest accomplishment is our community." Gary has been with Magento since 2015 and leads a winning global team comprised of: New Sales, Channel, Customer Success, Pre-Sales, Business Development, Support, and the Professional Services Team. Gary is also a strategic sales leader with a 20+ year track record of building cohesive, passionate, high-performance sales and services organizations across multiple vertical markets including retail, distribution, manufacturing, technology, and finance. Before Magento, Gary successfully ran international and domestic sales teams at NetSuite, IBM, and Sterling Commerce. With a strong understanding of sales enablement, operations, process, and execution, Gary focuses on building goal-oriented, winning teams and cultures that incorporate a commitment to excellence, accountability, and corporate citizenship while exceeding financial and customer satisfaction goals. I invited Gary Spector onto my daily tech podcast to talk about e-commerce trends, the experience economy, voice search, and conversations with customers at Imagine 2019.
Here at Imagine 2019 event, I want to explore the role of IT in eCommerce and how a company can shift away from internal IT hassles to a customer focus. With its increased popularity, the needs of SHOEBACCA.COM customers changed. The company offered an expanded line of products and started to look beyond eBay and their website. They focused on growth through innovative technologies, competitive shipping processes, and professional customer service. With over 700,000 SKUs in their system, SHOEBACCA.COM needed to streamline their inventory data by organizing and simplifying their structure. They needed to optimize their merchandising while handling a massive product catalog, and they needed to connect to multiple marketplaces. Their customers love to shop at Amazon, eBay, Rakutan, and the Walmart website, so that’s where they needed to sell. SHOEBACCA.COM decided to create an eCommerce system that could scale their growth, integrate their current systems, and sell customers the perfect sneaker wherever they start their journey. Tom Finney, Director of IT, at Shoebacca shares the story of how SHOEBACCA Grew Revenue x15 in Just 3 Years by using Magento and seeing the IT department as business enablers.    
Here at the Magento Imagine 2019 conference, Raj Nijjer, VP of marketing at Yotpo revealed insights from a new report, “The State of D2C Marketing 2019.” The report takes a candid look at the changing marketing & advertising landscape and the strategies contributing to the skyrocketing success of many of today’s Direct-to-Consumer (D2C) brands. I invited Raj Nijjer onto my podcast to talk about the key points in the report such as the ranking of where D2C brands will be spending their marketing and advertising dollars in 2019, particularly amongst Amazon, Facebook, Google, and Instagram. We also discuss how D2C brands are investing in a variety of online experiences, and why this strategy is quickly outpacing and outperforming, traditional advertising methods.
Toluna provides consumer insights designed to empower success in today's on-demand, global economy. Powered by the fusion of technology, expertise, and the largest global community of influencers at the ready, Toluna delivers rich, reliable, real-time insights to individuals and companies of all sizes. I wanted to learn more about how its automated consumer insights platform, TolunaInsights™ underpins everything they do. Phil Ahad  EVP, Head of Products and Strategy at Toluna joins me on my daily tech podcast to share how Toluna is committed to promoting Insights on Demand, an entirely new way for businesses to obtain insight and understand constantly shifting consumer sentiment and taste in the on-demand economy.  
Slice Labs Inc., the insurance engine leading tomorrow’s cloud-based, on-demand digital services ecosystems, recently announced Slice Mind, a new business unit of Slice, powered by an insight engine to help companies with personalization, experimentation, simulations, predictions, risk modeling, and product recommendations. Slice Mind combines AI, machine learning and behavioral psychology into an engine that transforms data insights into actions in order to deliver real business value and advantage for companies looking to future proof themselves. A May 2018 Celent report, Digitizing the Customer Experience: A New Framework, mentions the importance of effective use of data. Data is more readily available than ever and can be used to drive a personalized relationship with customers. However, coordinating data across multiple channels, combining internal and external data to deliver a personalized transaction and continually engaging with the customer in meaningful ways will require digital capabilities. Slice Mind provides companies with actionable recommendations that will help protect and grow their business through simulations, predictions, experiments, nudging and personalization. Available to both Slice Insurance Cloud Services (ICS) users and the general public, Slice Mind will enable companies and their customers be better protected against risk due to its ability to predict potential claims, among other capabilities. Slice Labs’ CTO, Stu Baserman joins me on my daily tech podcast to dive deeper into the tech behind Slice Mind and how the insight engine works.  
Cloudian specializes in “object storage” for enterprises, a form of unstructured data storage that eliminates the scaling limitations of traditional file storage, enabling enterprises to quickly grow deployments without hitting a cap. According to Gartner, 80% of enterprise data will be stored in some form of object storage by 2021. Cloudian’s platform provides infinite scalability and allows users to access data from anywhere in the world, offering “hybrid cloud” deployments that combine cloud and on-prem computing. Besides enabling the ability to easily access and manipulate large objects often consisting of video, images and other unstructured data, Cloudian’s storage solution results in lower costs, more consistently managed security and compliance with data governance policies. Mike Tso, CEO and co-founder of Cloudian joins me on my daily tech podcast. After Mike’s former company (Gemini Mobile Technologies) lost 66% of its workforce after the 2008 recession, he created Cloudian with a unique culture based on three key attributes for employees to model – hungry, humble and honest. In 2018, Cloudian announced $94 million in Series E funding, and recently the company was named one of the best cloud computing companies and CEOs to work for in 2019 based on Glassdoor. I wanted to find out more about the story behind Cloudian. We also discuss the changing data landscape. How the rise of AI, machine learning and IoT is causing data to pile up to the point where it’s no longer manageable and how Cloudian is changing the way enterprises manage their data. I learn how other storage vendors are seeing a declining market share, but Cloudian is experiencing rapid growth backed by prestigious investors including Goldman Sachs, Intel, and Fidelity. Cloudian has more than 300 customers, making it the most widely adopted independent provider of object storage solutions.  
Conga is the leader in end-to-end Digital Document Transformation. From collaboration and creation, through contract management and negotiation, to agreement and e-signature, the Conga Suite has set the standard for automating business productivity and CRM investment through end-to-end Digital Document Transformation. The Salesforce Platinum ISV Partner produces the highest volume downloaded paid app on the entire AppExchange. In fact, more than 900,000 users in 85 countries across virtually all industries rely on Conga applications to drive digital document transformation, including Hilton Worldwide, Schumacher Group, and CBRE. Jason Gabbard, Head of AI Strategy at Conga joins me on my daily tech podcast. We discuss Conga's digital document transformation suite, and the release of Conga AI Analyze, a new product that leverages artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) to unlock actionable business insights from digital documents and contracts.
Over the years, publishers have given much their inventory over to Facebook, and they’ve gotten dinged for it. Facebook gets revenue from user engagement, and the publisher doesn’t own or control distribution. In response to realizing they’ve been taken advantage of by the walled gardens, we’re witnessing the renaissance of email for publishers. Publishers have realized they have a logged-in channel that only they own: email. And now, email newsletters are acting as a bulwark against Facebook and their ilk. Kerel Cooper, SVP Global Marketing at LiveIntent joins me on my daily tech podcast to talk about how publishers are fighting against the walled gardens with email. We also discuss why LiveIntent created their own email MarTech stack and work with over 2500 publishers including CondeNast, The Washington Post and The New York Times.
We have all read about the retail apocalypse. But what if the future of retail was not e-commerce or bricks and mortar. What if it was something else? SHOWFIELDS is a four-story, 14,707 sq ft space at 11 Bond Street in NYC and home to a rotating selection of nearly 30 brands (including quip, The Farmer’s Dog, Shopify’s first physical presence and more). It's built on a big idea of becoming the “the most interesting store in the world” Tal Zvi Nathanel, CEO of SHOWFIELDS, joins me on my daily tech podcast to talk about the future of retail and how the industry is evolving industry. With SHOWFIELDS, Nathanel has created an entirely new approach to the brick & mortar approach that makes opening a store as easy as launching a website. The retail industry veteran reveals why retail is evolving to focus on experiences and community building–not just sales. We also discuss C-commerce or “consumer commerce,” a term coined by Nathanel to define the innovative retail concept that bridges the gap between physical and digital retail.
Gigster accelerates the delivery of digital transformation applications, giving companies the agility to thrive in a software-defined world. The company envisions a future where the best ideas flourish and provide great choices for customers to enrich their lives. Today, a few digital-native companies are disrupting almost every industry. Gigster believes in democratizing this capability—enabling all companies to build their own digital DNA to create life-changing products, engage their customers and empower employees. This vision requires a global network of talented people who can realize their full potential. We believe the best software will be built by those who are inspired by their work, can choose their work environment, and are rewarded for pure contribution—in the company of equally passionate colleagues. After hearing how Gigster has grown more than 30% and is rapidly approaching the $50 million annual revenue, I was excited for an opportunity to learn more about their story and the road ahead. Christopher Keene CEO at Gigster joins me on my daily tech podcast. Chris joined the Gigster team as CEO earlier this year. He previously sold his company, WaveMaker, to VMware, where he redefined VMware’s strategy for cloud computing and helped drive the $400 million Pivotal spinouts. Chris share his insights around their tech trends report and why we should be looking to IBM, Google, Microsoft, Amazon and providers of machine learning APIs to release more inclusive datasets that combat embedded discrimination and bias in AI. We also talk about how Gigster is helping tech startups better gain access to the tech talent needed to scale.      
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