From November 2-3, LocationWorld held the rapt attention of attendees from all over the business spectrum. Located in the stunning recesses of Conrad New York, LocationWorld ran from Wednesday morning until Thursday evening and successfully launched Yext into the world of innovative and worthwhile must-attend conferences. Featuring guest speakers such as the much-lauded astronaut twins Captains Mark and Scott Kelly, famed award-winning talent Leslie Odom Jr., and Yext CEO himself Howard Lerman, LocationWorld 2016 entertained and educated its prominent guests while simultaneously giving them a taste of what was to come from the company.
Yext, The Company
Yext was originally founded in 2006 by Howard Lerman, Brian Distelburger, and Brent Metz as a local advertising business. By 2009 the company was producing $20 million in revenue and had shifted gears to a billing model, which they would then sell to CityGrid Media in 2012 in order to focus on their business listing service. Today Yext is best known for its software that allows businesses to manage their location-focused listing information on a variety of important directory websites. For large companies that manage multiple locations, this is critical. Again showing their ability to evolve with the rapidly changing technological and marketing needs around them, Yext announced several new products during LocationWorld 2016, which will undoubtedly perpetuate their success into the oncoming years.
Yext’s Upcoming Products
Howard Lerman, CEO of Yext and LocationWorld 2016 speaker, made his mission explicit with the statement: “You should control the knowledge about your brand.” Yext has already worked to give that control to users over their location data in business directories, but they’re looking to take it a step further. Yext has multiple new products on the line, including a platform that allows you to manage and solicit reviews as well as a system that assists you in gathering and organizing your business listing information in addition to managing its distribution to different outside directories.
LocationWorld 2016 Highlights
But the conference wasn’t just a marketing bonanza for Yext. It proffered speeches from people like FourSquare CEO Jeff Glueck, xAd CEO Dipanshu Sharma, Google Global Product Solutions Lead Dave Byrne, and Yelp Director of Business Development Peter Curzon. Naturally, the topical focus was “Location,” but three other major themes developed similar trajectories in the conference narrative along with location.
- Location – With technology tracking consumer movements with an almost-eerie degree of exactness, location has become one of the most important factors in marketing. Localization for SEO is key, as Google measures distance along with relevance when serving search results. Massive increases in search terms like “near me” or “nearby” are indicators of a new wave of location-importance and a new way people are using search engines as business directories for services and products near them.
- Mobile First – Businesses must be organizing themselves around the “mobile-first” world that we now live in. A vast majority of searches are being done on mobile phones rather than on in-home computers, and many of these searches result in a decision made or a completed purchase. Computer-focused pages must also be optimized for phone and tablet use for marketing purposes.
- Artificial Intelligence – We may currently be in a mobile-first world, but we are rapidly approaching an artificial intelligence-first one. Searches are increasingly customized and contextual, differentiating between the who, the what, and the when of questions. Eventually personal assistants like Alexa will serve clients one answer for search inquiries rather than a list of them. Say goodbye to the page-long directory of blue links, as these AI-fueled results will be custom and singular.
- Reviews – Reviews are of radical, and new, importance to the SEO of websites. Google judges websites on their relevance, distance, and prominence- the last of which means their freshness and ratings of reviews. Authentic reviews generated on the website itself have gained priority, and stars even show up on search results under the business name.
LocationWorld 2016 also provided insights into the healthcare industry, the self-driving industry, and many other important points of marketing reference for the current age. Each speaker offered something new to the stage, and many came from colossal, industry-leading companies.
The Future of LocationWorld
A LocationWorld 2017 was hinted at at the conference’s end, promising an even greater display of Yext’s conference-organizing prowess in a year. For 2016, LocationWorld was a tremendous success that fused a variety of industries and topics into a cohesive and highly informative whole. Punctuated by breaks, delicious meals, and at the very end a private concert at the Highline Ballroom, LocationWorld 2016 balanced itself admirably, and its venue in New York City left no one wanting. A round of applause is due to Yext for LocationWorld 2016, and we can’t wait to see what they have in store for us throughout the year until their next grand display.