Last night I attended the inaugural San Francisco Bay Area Sitecore User Group, which saw an eclectic mix of techies and marketers, users and implementers, gather to talk all things Sitecore.
As a relatively new member of the Sitecore community, it was a great event for me to begin to meet people, and make connections.
The evening started off with a very engaging talk on trends, and Sitecore's strategy from Mark Floisand, VP. Product Marketing at Sitecore. Mark is an excellent speaker, and really grabbed the audience's attention with compelling statistics from Sitecore's Customer Experience Management (CEM) study. Facts like 85% of companies land on step one or two of the 7 step CEM ladder, and only 48% of those polled have any kind of optimized mobile experience.
This tied in very well with Sitecore's vision for the future, giving Sitecore customers the tools to get optimized, and the goal of "one connected solution."
Next up was Brent Kaiser, of Filter Digital. Brent's segment was more of a led discussion, rather than a presentation, touching on shifting budget trends. The debate focused around the transfer of control, and the increasing trend of digital budgets moving from IT's hands over to Marketing. It is a very interesting topic, and one we encounter as a business, often acting as the glue in the relationship to achieve the goals of both parties. When we find ourselves in these situations at BB, we aim to reunite the teams and form a project team. A typical project team will contain a member or two of each of the required disciplines (IT, Marketing, User Experience, Design, Business/Domain experts, and Building Blocks) working together to create the best solution.
The evening ended with some old fashioned networking; meeting, greeting and exchanging information, helping the community to get to know one another, and talking about what the future of the group could look like.
Overall, the first meetup was a huge success, and I hope it leads to many more. I would like to extend my thanks to Sitecore, and the event organizers, for getting the user group off the ground. Hopefully Building Blocks San Francisco can replicate our UK counterparts, and help to host future events like our UK user group event.
If you are interested in attending the next one, and keeping to-to-date with the group, please join in on Meetup.