Silicon Slopes Tech Summit 2018
By: Kevin Jessop Date: January 26, 2018
The Silicon Slopes Tech Summit 2018 was a standout event full of 14,000 entrepreneurs, business owners, techies, and even millennials. Morning of the first day was full of incredible speakers. Afternoon was tough deciding which breakout session to attend with so many interesting topics and excellent presenters.
Clint Betts started everything off by conducting short interviews with the Silicon Slopes executive board. We got to see some of the best there is, including Banyan CEO Carine Clark, Domo CEO Josh James, Qualtrics CEO Ryan Smith, Pluralsight CEO Aaron Skonnard, Entrata CEO Dave Bateman, Insidesales CEO Dave Elkington, Sorenson Media CEO Marcus Liassides, and Vivint Smart Home CEO Todd Pedersen.
Big news was shared from Insidesales about securing a $35 million-dollar investment from Microsoft. Pluralsight announced they are building a brand-new campus in Utah that will create thousands of new jobs and have a plan to have a computer science ed class taught in every K-12 school by 2023. We heard multiple people say that [Utah] ‘this is the place!’. Where have we heard that before?
Former Beats by Dre CMO, Omar Johnson, stole the show speaking on marketing in the 21st century. We could, and probably should, just copy and paste his whole speech right here. But, we’ll just share the highlights for now. Put simply, it’s this:
Brand = Product, People and Storytelling.
He talked of the importance of diversity when building a team and how different perspectives increase the ability to innovate. Johnson emphasized People. People are the ones building the product and telling the story. He shared the marketing story of giving athletes, including hundreds at the Olympics, Beats headphones to block out the noise from fans and how it skyrocketed Beats headphone demand in the world of sports. Athletes everywhere of all levels wanted a pair of Beats headphones to focus and perform better.
Steve Young offered some great advice about the creativity he needed when he sat on the 49er bench behind Joe Montana. A question he asked himself then and now – that we all should ask ourselves – is “What can I do today to be better than yesterday?”
Mitt Romney shared some of his legendary knowledge about how there is always a fear of failure and that it is part of life. You just learn from it and move on. He talked about being a leader, being respectful to those you work with and “if you’re not worried, then you’re not being bold enough.”
A lot of the key takeaways throughout the two days of conference were focused on the importance of product, customers, and diversity. We were fortunate to hear from many women corporate leaders who shared valuable insights about how women on leaderboards help companies see more success. We took the Parity Pledge to interview at least one qualified woman for every open role, VP and above. Also we heard the remarkable story of Qualtrics promoting 5 For the Fight, a movement to eradicate cancer $5 at a time.
The Silicon Slopes Tech Summit leadership amped up the conference year over year and really exceeded expectations. We can’t wait for next year!