After months of build-up and excitement, Day 2 of Sitecore Symposium 2021 lived up to the hype with an incredible conversation and performance by singer songwriter John Legend.
Sitecore CMO Paige O’Neill started the celebrity guest keynote by sitting down for a chat with the Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony winning artist and activist in his dressing room before his concert date in Phoenix. Legend is currently on tour for the first time since the pandemic started and he’s relayed just how much he’s enjoying interacting with fans in person again.
Paige asked John questions addressing a range of subjects, including how dramatically the music industry has changed over the years and the ways musicians now are taking advantage of digital channels to connect with fans and create memorable experiences. They also discussed what’s been happening so far this season on “The Voice” where John is one of the coaches, the early days of his career at Boston Consulting Group, and his devotion to giving back to the community by raising awareness around social and racial justice.
After their conversation wrapped up, Legend sat down on stage at his piano and performed three of his most popular songs — “Love Me Now,” “Ordinary People,” with the set capped off by his mega-hit “All of Me.”
Sitecore’s product and innovation roadmap
Day 2 started with a keynote from Sitecore Chief Product Officer Dave O’Flanagan where he broke down Sitecore’s vision for the future of the digital experience platform (DXP). The speed of innovation has never been faster than it is today, and it’s only going to increase.
Dave explained how there are three core pillars to Sitecore’s products — Content, Experience, and Commerce.
“Content is the center of gravity for the Sitecore DXP,” O’Flanagan said.
Dave then introduced Sitecore’s answer to the “no compromise” CMS – Sitecore Experience Manager Cloud, which will be available in Spring 2022. He then launched into a preview demo of how the CMS will work for marketers.
Dave also introduced other new products, including Sitecore Personalize that’s integrated with Sitecore CDP and fits within the overall Composable DXP strategy, Sitecore Discover, an AI-enabled commerce feature that makes intelligent product and content recommendations for consumers, and Sitecore Search, an intelligent search engine. The last two technologies were added with the recent acquisition of Reflektion and will be available in Spring 2022.
Dave also had exciting news about several other products and programs including a new Sitecore Developer Portal, Sitecore Health Cloud coming in Spring 2022, and the availability of Sitecore Experience Platform 10.2 coming on November 4.
Following Dave’s keynote, Chief Customer Success Officer Lee Miles had the pleasure of sharing customer success stories for this year’s Ultimate Sitecore Experience Award Winners – Cracker Barrel Old Country Store in Americas and UnitingCare Queensland in APJ. The session also included a sit-down between Sitecore CEO Steve Tzikakis and WPP Chief Technology Officer Stephan Pretorius where they talked about the amazing work being done by Aston Martin, the Ultimate SEA winner in EMEA.
Sessions available on-demand
Registered attendees who happened to miss any of the sessions during the live event can come back into the Symposium 2021 platform and watch them on-demand through November 7. Whether it’s a keynote, featured session, partner roundtable, or breakout session, everything can be watched on-demand except for John Legend’s singing performance.
We’re also looking for attendee feedback. For each session review submitted, Sitecore will be donating $5 USD as part of the Symposium Cares program to the designated charity for your region — National Wildlife Federation in the Americas, Refuge in EMEA, and ReachOut in APJ. Each charity will be receiving up to a max of $10,000 USD, and attendee feedback is crucial to helping us make Symposium better each year.
Thank you to our sponsors
We want to give a huge shout out to all our Sitecore Symposium sponsors this year, including our Global Excellence Sponsor Accenture/Avanade, as well as our Global Sponsors Horizontal Digital, Microsoft, WPP, and XCentium. It’s only with the support of our sponsors that we can hold an event like Symposium each year.
If you didn’t get a chance to visit with our sponsors during the event, registered attendees can visit the Solutions Pavilion through November 7 and watch our partners’ videos and download the content they have made available in their virtual booths.
It’s hard to believe that this year’s Symposium is already over. Before you know it, you’ll be receiving communications about Sitecore Symposium 2022, where I’m sure we’re all hoping to connect in person at a live conference once again.
Jason Masini is the Senior Director of Content Marketing at Sitecore. Connect with him on LinkedIn and Twitter.