Our Speakers

We offer a Single Track schedule full of Keynote-Quality Speakers. Learn more about this year’s lineup of branding experts.

Rohit Bhargava
Trends & Innovation

Michael Brenner
Content Marketing & Brand Strategy

Ann Handley
Content Marketing

Andrew Davis
Video Marketing

Park Howell

Denise Lee Yohn
Culture & Strategy

Soren Kaplan
Disruptive Innovation

Oli Gardner
Optimization & Conversion

Curt Steinhorst
Consumer Behavior

Blake Morgan
Experiential Marketing

Andrew Essex
Advertising Strategy

Jeffrey Rohrs
Content Marketing

Meredith Ferguson
Brand Purpose

  • Rohit Bhargava

    Best-selling Author of the “Non-Obvious” Series of Business Trends Books and “Likeonomics”; Founder of the Non-Obvious Company, The Influential Marketing Group, and Ideapress Publishing

    Rohit Bhargava is an innovation and marketing expert, skilled facilitator, and keynote speaker. After a successful 15 year career as a brand and marketing strategist at two of the largest agencies in the world (Ogilvy and Leo Burnett), Rohit became an entrepreneur and has since started three companies.

    He is the Wall Street Journal best selling author of five books on topics as wide ranging as the future of business and building a brand with personality and has delivered sold out keynote presentations and workshops to business leaders in 32 countries. His signature book “Non-Obvious” is updated annually with 15 new trend predictions, has been read and shared by more than 1 million readers and is translated in ten languages. Rohit has been invited to share his insights at some of the most forward-looking organizations in the world including Intel, NASA, Disney, JP Morgan Chase, LinkedIn, Microsoft, American Express, BP, the World Bank, Coca-Cola and hundreds of others.

    Outside of his consulting work, Rohit also teaches his popular signature course on storytelling and marketing at Georgetown University in Washington DC and has been invited to deliver guest lectures at many other prestigious schools including Stanford and Wharton. For the past 14 years Rohit has also been writing his personal “Influential Marketing Blog” which has been featured in global media and named one of the top 25 marketing blogs in the world by AdAge magazine. He is regularly interviewed and featured as an expert commentator in global media including Harvard Business Review, The Guardian, and NPR. Rohit also writes a monthly column for GQ magazine in Brazil on technology and trends.

    Thanks to his many years of sharing insights, Rohit has been recognized alongside visionary business leaders like Sir Richard Branson and Tom Peters as a “Top 100 Thought Leader In Trustworthy Business Behavior” and was named by global recruiting firm Korn Ferry as one of the “Most Influential South Asians In Media and Entertainment.”

    On a personal level, Rohit is married and lives with his wife and two young boys in the Washington DC area. He is a lifelong fan of anything having to do with the Olympics (he’s been to five so far!), actively avoids anything having to do with cauliflower (yuck!), and believes that the most entertaining and impactful job he will ever have is being a great dad and teaching his sons to be kind when no one expects it, curious about the things others take for granted, and confident enough to change the world.

  • Michael Brenner

    Best-selling Author of “The Content Formula” and CEO of Marketing Insider Group

    Michael Brenner is a globally-recognized keynote speaker, author of “The Content Formula,” and the CEO of Marketing Insider Group. He has worked in leadership positions in sales and marketing for global brands like SAP and Nielsen, as well as for thriving startups. Now, Michael shares his passion on leadership and marketing strategies that deliver customer value and business impact. He is recognized by the Huffington Post as a Top Business Keynote Speaker and a top CMO influencer by Forbes.

  • Ann Handley

    Chief Content Officer of MarketingProfs; Best-selling Author of “Content Rules” and “Everybody Writes"

    Ann is a digital marketing pioneer and the Chief Content Officer of MarketingProfs, the leading marketing training company with more than 600,000 subscribers.

    She is also a Wall Street Journal bestselling author (“Everybody Writes: Your Go-To Guide to Creating Ridiculously Good Content,” and co-author of “Content Rules: How to Create Killer Blogs, Podcasts, Videos, Ebooks, Webinars (and More) That Engage Customers and Ignite Your Business“) who speaks worldwide about how businesses can escape marketing mediocrity to ignite tangible results. IBM named her one of the 7 people shaping modern marketing.

    A LinkedIn Influencer, she has more than 420,000 followers on Twitter and is consistently named one of the more influential marketers on social media.

    She has contributed commentary and bylines to Entrepreneur magazine, IBM’s Think Marketing, Inc. magazine, Mashable, Huffington Post, American Express, NPR, and the Wall Street Journal.

    Ann lives in Boston, where she is Mom to creatures two- and four-legged.

    She is an E.B. White Superfan, a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel enthusiast, and a novice tap dancer.

    She escapes it all by retreating to her tiny-house office, which houses her vintage typewriter collection.

  • Andrew Davis

    Best-selling Author of “Brandscaping” and “Town Inc."; Bleeding-edge Marketing & Media Futurist

    Andrew Davis is a bestselling author and internationally acclaimed keynote speaker. Before building and selling a thriving digital marketing agency, Andrew produced for NBC’s Today Show, worked for The Muppets in New York and wrote for Charles Kuralt. He’s appeared in the New York Times, Forbes, the Wall Street Journal, and on NBC and the BBC. Davis has crafted documentary films and award-winning content for tiny start-ups and Fortune 500 brands.

    Recognized as one of the industry’s “Jaw-Dropping Marketing Speakers,” Andrew is a mainstay on global marketing influencer lists. Wherever he goes, Andrew Davis puts his infectious enthusiasm and magnetic speaking style to good use teaching business leaders how to grow their businesses, transform their cities, and leave their legacy.

  • Park Howell

    Brand Storytelling Expert; Founder of Business of Story

    Park Howell has been in advertising for 30 years, has run his own agency for 20 years, and has been steeped in story marketing for the past 10+ years. He is the founder of the Business of Story, a proven platform based on his 10-step Story Cycle system to help leaders of purpose-driven brands clarify their story to amplify their impact and simplify their life.

    His popular weekly podcast features authors, screenwriters, makers, content marketers and brand raconteurs who share storytelling tips and techniques to help listeners craft and tell compelling stories that sell.

    He has also created and taught the communications curriculum for the Executive Master’s for Sustainability Leadership program at Arizona State University.  His storytelling course transforms international executives into Chief Storytelling Officers to advance their social initiatives further, faster.

    Park was named Advertising Person of the Year in 2010 by the American Advertising Federation of Metro Phoenix. The following year, his agency was recognized among the Top 10 Impact Companies in Arizona by the Phoenix Chamber of Commerce.

    Park now consults, teaches, coaches and speaks on storytelling in business around the world. He has guided hundreds of brands and grown thousands of their people in such organizations as Hilton, Cummins, American Express, Philips, KPNG, and the United States Air Force.

    He is a graduate of Washington State University and combines his degrees in communications and music composition and theory to help purpose-driven businesses grow through the power of story marketing.

  • Denise Lee Yohn

    Best-selling Author of “FUSION: How Integrating Brand and Culture Powers the World’s Greatest Companies” and “What Great Brands Do"

    Denise Lee Yohn is the go-to expert on brand leadership for national media outlets, an in-demand speaker and consultant, and an influential writer. Denise is the author of the bestselling book “What Great Brands Do: The Seven Brand-Building Principles that Separate the Best from the Rest” (Jossey-Bass), the e-book “Extraordinary Experiences: What Great Retail and Restaurant Brands Do,” and the highly anticipated new book “FUSION: How Integrating Brand and Culture Powers the World’s Greatest Companies” (Nicholas Brealey/Hachette Books). News media including FOX Business TV, CNBC, The Wall Street Journal, and NPR call on Denise when they want an expert point-of-view on hot business issues. With her expertise and inspiring approach, Denise has become an in-demand keynote speaker. She has addressed business leaders around the world, including The Art of Marketing in Toronto, EXPO Marketing in Mexico City, and Sustainable Brands in San Diego.

    Denise enjoys challenging readers to think differently about brand-building in her regular contributions to Harvard Business Review and Forbes, and has been a sought-after writer for publications including Fast Company, Entrepreneur, Knowledge@Wharton, Seeking Alpha, QSR Magazine, among others. Denise initially cultivated her brand-building approaches through several high-level positions in advertising and client-side marketing. She served as lead strategist at advertising agencies for Burger King and Land Rover and as the marketing leader and analyst for Jack in the Box restaurants and Spiegel catalogs. Denise went on to head Sony Electronic Inc.’s first ever brand office, where she was the vice president/general manager of brand and strategy and garnered major corporate awards. Consulting clients have included Target, Oakley, Dunkin’ Donuts, and other leading companies. Outside of her professional roles, Denise counts hiking Mount Kilimanjaro, dancing with a professional ballet company, and flying a helicopter as some of her greatest life experiences.

  • Soren Kaplan

    Best-selling Author of “The Invisible Advantage: How to Create a Culture of Innovation” and “Leapfrogging: Harness the Power of Surprise for Business Breakthroughs”; Founder of InnovationPoint and upBoard

    Soren Kaplan is the bestselling and award winning author of “Leapfrogging” and “The Invisible Advantage,” an Affiliated Professor at the Center for Effective Organizations at USC’s Marshall School of Business, a writer for FastCompany and Inc. Magazine, a globally recognized keynote speaker, and the Founder of InnovationPoint and upBOARD (the world’s first Collaborative Dashboard software platform). He has been recognized by the Thinkers50 as one of the world’s top thought leaders in business strategy and innovation.

    As a leading expert in disruptive innovation, innovation culture, and business model innovation, he works with Disney, NBCUniversal, Kimberly-Clark, Colgate-Palmolive, Hershey, Red Bull, Medtronic, Roche, Philips, Cisco, Visa, Ascension Health, Kaiser Permanente, CSAA Insurance Group, American Nurses Association, and numerous other organizations.

    Soren previously led the internal strategy and innovation group at Hewlett-Packard (HP) during the roaring 1990’s in Silicon Valley.

    He has lectured at the Harvard Business School, Copenhagen Business School, Melbourne Business School, and with other MBA and executive education programs globally. His Wall Street Journal bestseller, “Leapfrogging,” was recognized as “Best Leadership Book” by the Axiom Book Awards and his latest book “The Invisible Advantage was awarded “Best General Business Book” by the International Book Awards.

    He has been quoted, published, and interviewed by Harvard Business Review, Fast Company, Forbes, CNBC, National Public Radio, the American Management Association, USA Today, Strategy & Leadership, and The International Handbook on Innovation, among many others. He holds Master’s and Ph.D. degrees in Organizational Psychology, resides in the San Francisco Bay Area, and possesses dual US-French citizenship.

  • Oli Gardner

    Co-Founder of Unbounce; Expert on Optimization and Conversion

    Unbounce co-founder Oli Gardner has seen more landing pages than anyone on the planet. He’s obsessed with identifying and reversing bad marketing practices, and his disdain for marketers who send campaign traffic to their homepage is legendary, resulting in landing page rants that can peel paint off an unpainted wall. A prolific international keynote speaker, Oli is on a mission to rid the world of marketing mediocrity by using data-informed copywriting, design, interaction, and psychology to create a more delightful experience for marketers and customers alike.

    He was recently named the “The 2018 Marketer to Watch,” in the under 46 category, by his mother.

  • Curt Steinhorst

    Best-selling Author of “Can I Have Your Attention?”; The Distraction Expert

    Curt Steinhorst is the bestselling author of “Can I Have Your Attention? Inspiring Better Work Habits, Focusing Your Team, and Getting Stuff Done in the Constantly Connected Workplace.” He is on a mission to rescue us from our distracted selves. After years studying the impact of tech on human behavior, Curt founded Focuswise, a consultancy that equips organizations to overcome the distinct challenges of the constantly-connected workplace.

    Diagnosed with ADD as a child, Curt knows intimately the challenges companies face to keep the attention of today’s distracted workforce and customer. He has coached executives, TV personalities, and well-known professional athletes on how to effectively communicate and create focus when they speak to audiences, lead their employees, and engage their customers.

    Curt’s unique insight and entertaining speaking style has captured the attention of audiences worldwide. He speaks more than seventy-five times a year to organizations that include everyone from global leadership associations and nonprofits to Fortune 100 companies.

  • Blake Morgan

    Best-selling Author of “More is More: How the Best Companies Work Harder and Go Farther to Crete Knock Your Socks Off Customer Experiences"

    Blake Morgan is a Customer Experience Futurist. She is the author of “More is More: How The Best Companies Go Farther and Work Harder To Create Knock Your Socks Off Customer Experiences.” Blake is adjunct faculty at the Rutgers executive education MBA program. Blake contributes to Forbes, the Harvard Business Review and Hemispheres Magazine. She is the host of The Modern Customer Podcast and a weekly customer experience video series on YouTube. She has worked with Ericsson, Intel, Verizon Wireless, and many more. She lives in the Bay Area with her husband, daughter and their two dogs.

  • Andrew Essex

    Former CEO of Droga5; Former CEO of Tribeca Enterprises; Best-selling Author of “The End of Advertising"

    Andrew Essex is the former CEO of Tribeca Enterprises, the parent company of the Tribeca Film Festival. Until 2015, Andrew Essex was the Vice Chairman and CEO of Droga5, generally considered to be the hottest shop in the advertising industry. The agency won multiple “Agency of the Year” awards and has been praised in The New York TimesNew York magazine, and The Guardian which dubbed it “the most exciting agency on the planet.”

    Essex speaks frequently on media and marketing to ad industry leaders and CMOs of leading Fortune 500 companies. In his groundbreaking book, “The End of Advertising,” and his keynotes he sets up the ultimate challenge for his profession: Innovate or die.

    Essex began his career in media as an award-winning journalist and held editorial posts at The New YorkerEntertainment Weekly, and Salon.com, among others. He was also a consultant for the launch of US Weekly magazine. He has served as a television commentator for ABC, CNN, Anderson CooperThe View, FOX News, CNBC, and E!. His writing has been published in The New YorkerThe New York TimesThe New York Times MagazineRolling StoneOutsideEntertainment WeeklyElleHarper’s BazaarFood & WineAllureInterview, the Village Voice, the American Book Review, and Details.

    Essex serves on the board of The American Advertising Federation and is the co-author of three previous books: “A Very Public Offering: The Story of the Globe.com,” “Chasing Cool,” with former Barney’s CEO Gene Pressman and “Le Freak: An Upside Down Story of Family, Disco and Destiny,” with celebrated musician Nile Rodgers.

    He is an advisor to the White House Office of Digital Strategy and the Wharton SEI Center for Advanced Studies in Management. He serves as an angel investor and advisor for a myriad disruptive technology and consumer packaged goods firms. Essex has an MA in American Literature from New York University. He lives with his wife and two children in Brooklyn.

  • Jeffrey Rohrs

    Chief Marketing Officer at Yext

    Jeff serves as Chief Marketing Officer for Yext, the leading Digital Knowledge Management platform that gives companies control over their brand experiences across the digital universe of maps, apps, search engines, voice assistants, and other intelligent services that drive discovery, decision, and action throughout the customer journey.

    Jeff co-authored “The Everywhere Brand” ebook (Yext 2017), and his first book, “AUDIENCE: Marketing in the Age of Subscribers, Fans, & Followers” (Wiley 2014), has been lauded by marketers and executives alike as a must-read.

    Prior to joining Yext, Jeff served as Vice President of Marketing Insights for Salesforce and ExactTarget.

  • Meredith Ferguson

    Managing Director of TMI Strategy (Consulting Arm of DoSomething.Org)

    Meredith Ferguson is the Managing Director of TMI Strategy – the consulting arm of DoSomething.org (the largest organization for young people and social impact). TMI gleans data-driven insights from DoSomething’s 5.5 million members to help clients harness the power of young people for good.

    Meredith’s career has spanned both client and agency roles, where she spearheaded youth-focused engagement strategies for ILostABet.org, YourChemistry.org, and GiveThemTen.org, as well as led business-driving strategies for national health, retail, and restaurant brands.

    Meredith is an adjunct professor of Public Interest Marketing at Fordham University and has served as a judge for the Positive Change Effie Awards and the D&AD Impact Awards.

    She is a graduate of Vanderbilt Law School where she was a founding member of the Vanderbilt Child & Family Law Clinic and later served as a board member for Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA).

    When not striving to bake the perfect chocolate chip cookie, Meredith can be found watching a musical or play and exploring every nook and cranny of New York City with her husband and two girls.

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