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This week, Travis and Stewart were in Lisbon for Web Summit, where 53,056 people ate over 97,000 custard pastries, and the world’s best minds came together to drop knowledge bombs across 17 stages. We reveal who we interviewed for our special VB Engage: Web Summit episodes and discuss the highlights of the conference.

We then chat with the brilliant Veronica Belmont about how big brands are embracing chatbots, why discovery is a significant issue, and what her favorite chatbot examples are (one of which is like having a therapist in your pocket).


Did you miss last week’s episode with Alexis Fogel? We’ve got your back

By listening to the 28th episode of the VB Engage podcast, you will hear:

  • We’re talking about Web Summit: a huge, amazing and incredible event [00:41]
  • Travis and Stewart are making podcasts great again, this time in the flesh [1:38]
  • Recording a whole slew of VB engage episodes with amazing guests during the summit [1:45]
  • First-ever VB Engage on a stage live in front of an audience of over 1,000 people  [2:04]
  • There’s a big difference between recording on Skype and being live on stage [2:24]
  • And it’s the day of the U.S. election results [2:42]
  • It’s fascinating to chat with Alan Schaaf about Imgur [3:15]
  • You’ll get Web Summit specials in the next few weeks with amazing guests lined up [3:45]
  • We announce Joseph Gordon-Levittthe fantastic Hollywood actor and cofounder of HitRecord [4:14]
  • Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s greatness: creating an amazing creative community that includes half a million people [4:33]
  • Gordon-Levitt drops super tips for creating a community where it feels like members care about each other [4:45]
  • Robert Scoble talks about VR, AR, and mixed reality in the future [5:21]
  • We have an excellent opportunity to talk with Paddy Cosgrave, the man behind Web Summit [5:56]
  • Web Summit uses network theory and data science, and it has its own software to help grow the event [6:24]
  • We also chat with Alexis Ohanian, CEO and cofounder of Reddit [6:51]
  • We talk about how Ohanian feels about his website being such an important factor in the recent U.S. elections [7:15]
  • We have a conversation with Stephane Kasriel, CEO of Upwork [8:00]
  • Talking about all the challenges of running the business: 5 million businesses use Upwork, which employs 12 million freelancers [8:31]
  • We also interview the CEO of Birchbox, Katia Beauchamp, pioneer of monthly subscription box services [8:40]
  • Travis Wright interviews the Eh Bee Family on the Content Makers Stage at Web Summit [9:46]
  • Eh Bee Family was huge on Vine about four years ago with their family record videos [9:55]
  • Stewart debates the CEO of Ad Block Plus on the large PandaConf stage [10:45]
  • VentureBeat editor-in-chief, Blaise Zerega, debates with Gregory Gittrich, chief content officer at Mashable, regarding publishing news content direct to social media [14:46]
  • A fantastic week in Lisbon for the Web Summit: a lot of great content coming your way from that event [15:10]
  • Interesting news this week: a case study from Kik about a fun chatbot [15:25]
  • These bot makers managed to go from nothing to 200,000 users in 10 days [14:45]
  • 30 days later that became half a million users, and it is now over a million [15:50]
  • Introducing Veronica Belmont, product manager at Growbot [18:35]
  • Veronica shares her experiences as an active member of the bot community and within Growbot [20:46]
  • We ask Veronica if she thinks that bots will form the new “app store” or if we have a long way to go before we get to that point [23:10]
  • How does the chatbot experience change everything for users? [23:20]
  • People live in these chat platforms. Messaging apps are where they spend most of their time [24:48]
  • Travis Wright’s very first internet experience at the University of Kansas [24:54]
  • How does Veronica see bots changing the way people are communicating? [25:45]
  • The biggest challenge for a lot of chatbot creators is onboarding [27:02]
  • What are some of the cooler bots that Veronica has seen, the ones that impressed her? [33:38]

Thanks for tuning in this week, and be excited for next week, when we interview the incredible Veronica Belmont.

And if you missed last week’s episode with Alexis Fogel at Dashlane, an incredible episode full of huge knowledge bombs, listen to it right here.


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