This week, Travis and Stewart wrap up 2016 — which has been such a great year </sarcasm> — with their predictions for the future of mobile, marketing, engagement, community, and everything else we manage to shoehorn into VB Engage each week.

We also thank our families, producers, directors, makeup artists, and editors for 33 episodes of slightly above-average content and reveal which publication was kind enough to put us in their “must listen” list of marketing podcasts for 2017.

Then, we interview Paddy Cosgrave — the founder of Web Summit — on how he and his team managed to grow this tech event from humble beginnings to an incredible 53,000 visitors in just a few short years. The answers include data science, network effect, and a serious amount of hard work.

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By listening to this episode of the VB Engage podcast, you will hear:

  • Welcome to VB Engage episode 33! [00:10]
  • The final episode of 2016, as we head into a holiday break [00:34]
  • Big thanks to our amazing editor, Evan, for making us sound good on every episode [01:20]
  • Stewart and Travis admit they have faces made for radio [02:00]
  • This week’s guest is Paddy Cosgrave, founder of WebSummit [02:20]
  • Last week’s guest, Alexis Ohanian, triggered Travis’ Amazon Echo repeatedly [02:35]
  • Travis should upgrade to Google Home, which leads to a beautiful segue by Stewart [02:45]
  • VentureBeat News is now available on Google Home [03:05]
  • Stewart and Travis talk trends and predictions for 2017 [04:20]
  • Travis thinks the martech stack will increase to over 5,500 technologies on Scott Brinker’s landscape [05:05]
  • Travis predicts that IBM and Oracle will acquire tag management solutions — maybe Ensighten or Tealium [05:35]
  • Adobe has ruled the marketing cloud for quite a while [06:00]
  • IBM hired someone specifically after reading the VB Insights study [06:35]
  • Marketing technology is going to grow, but we will care about fewer of the available solutions [07:25]
  • More consolidation in 2017, as large enterprises buy the excellent smaller ones [08:05]
  • There will be more winners in the small-medium business (SMB) space [08:20]
  • Less of “the Uber of…” and more of “the MailChimp of…,” delivering power to SMBs with easy-to-use interfaces [08:45]
  • If Q3 is any indication of venture capital, there may be less money available for startups in 2017 [09:30]
  • The cannabis industry was a boom in 2016, but it will be interesting to watch in 2017 under Trump’s anti-cannabis Cabinet [09:50]
  • Talking mobile, we’re curious to see what Apple does in 2017 with the iPhone 8 [10:15]
  • Phones are becoming powerful enough to fuel decent AR/VR experiences [10:50]
  • 67% of consumers have either tried or want to try VR [12:00]
  • Content creators and marketers are going to have fun in 2017 with 360-degree and wide-angle cameras [12:30]
  • Cheap 360-degree cameras that you can use to stream live anywhere are on the way [13:10]
  • Travis coined the term, VRcations, which Stewart immediately hated [14:20]
  • Travis will be taking VRcations during the day, working on a Costa Rican beach from his office in Kansas City [14:45]
  • Musicians will be using VR, selling access for additional monetization [15:10]
  • Plus, keep in mind 5G is just around the corner in 2020 [15:30]
  • Kenny Lauer, head of marketing and digital for the Golden State Warriors, talked about VR for basketball and the team’s new state-of-the-art arena [16:00]
  • VR for sports is going to be a big deal. Fox Sports VR was just released, as well [17:05]
  • ShotTracker is a sports wearable for basketball. Seeing real-time stats while watching in VR will be incredible [17:45]
  • Now, our interview with Paddy Cosgrave, the founder of WebSummit [18:30]
  • We were there in Lisbon at WebSummit with 53,000 of Paddy’s closest friends [19:40]
  • Web Summit takes data science to the next level for event marketing [20:15]
  • Paddy mentioned that they take the approach of connecting people online to offline [20:35]
  • By connecting your social profiles, Web Summit tries to connect its conference goers with people they already know but maybe haven’t met in real life [22:00]
  • They connect people in groups via machine-curated network statistics [23:00]
  • Web Summit assigns people to dinners and side events in similar ways [24:10]
  • Technology can give us the intimacy of a small conference within a crowd of 50k+ [24:45]
  • Math and statistics will revolutionize every industry [25:50]
  • Moneyball for conferences [26:15]
  • Every version of Web Summit is like an entirely new operating system; the “software” is never finished, and Web Summit is always going to evolve [27:35]
  • 90% of people who first experience Web Summit online do so via mobile [28:55]
  • Paddy and his team strive to make attendees feel connected before even arriving at the conference [29:25]
  • Our next episode is with Robert Scoble on January 10, 2017 — after the holidays! [30:30]
  • Also this week, a great honor that Inc. Magazine’s Jeremy Goldman included VB Engage as one of the 9 Top Podcasts to Make You a Better Marketer in 2017! [31:35]

Thanks again to everyone who has tuned in this year! We’ve had nearly 8 billion people listen to our podcast on Earth, and over 13 billion aliens from other planets. We are so blessed and humbled by the response so far! #posttruth

See you next year on January 10 with Episode 34, as we kick off 2017 with the one and only Robert Scoble.  We discuss his new book, The Fourth Transformation, VR/AR/MR, and what’s up Apple’s sleeve with its next iPhone. You’ll want to join us for that!

If you missed last week’s episode with Alexis Ohanian, cofounder of Reddit, you can listen to it right here. And before you end 2016, you should subscribe to VB Engage below and give Travis and Stewart the gift of a several-star rating — and maybe even type some words in a review.  They would do the same for you, you know!

Happy holidays!  See you again Tuesday, January 10.

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