ACTIVATE is always an exciting time for Lucidworks. We love getting the chance to connect with peers and fellow leaders in the spaces of search, AI, machine learning, data science, and digital experience. Every year we wrap up the event feeling inspired and motivated to put new ideas to practice.

This year’s event was no exception. Attendees were treated to an energetic opening DJ set from DJ D Sharp followed by excellent opening keynotes from Lucidworks CEO Mike Sinoway and acclaimed author and brand-builder Denise Lee Yohn. Mike touched on the opportunities to create impactful digital experiences – even during turbulent markets – is possible by focusing on understanding peoples’ goals and how to connect them with what they want. Denise inspired attendees by speaking to the importance of connecting customer and employee experiences, and how a strong connection between the two can yield growth and unleash true potential.

In addition to these sessions, attendees got to hear expert insights from Google Cloud, Kaiser Permanente, Grid Dynamics, and many more. Our own Lucidworks experts gave excellent talks on everything from ecommerce trends to Fusion platform updates to data science insights. With all of that in mind, a few key themes became very apparent for this year’s event that nearly all speakers touched on that will make a major impact in the year to come.

1. Technology can foster intuitive, human-centric digital experiences

In order for digital experiences to be meaningful, they need to be accessible and connect with users in a way that makes sense for their needs. This can take on many different shapes, and several speakers at ACTIVATE spoke on the way technology can be supportive. Phil Slade, founder and CEO of Decida Digital and Switch4Schools went over the ways data, psychology, and machine learning can be used in tandem to improve the wellbeing of students. CDW’s Rick Lockwood walked attendees through how the organization applies B2C best experience practices to B2B search to create better website experiences for the B2B buyer. Ramzi Alqrainy, CTO of The Chefz, gave deep insights on how non-English based search can support food delivery systems. Finally, our own Paolo Padua, Product Marketing Manager, spoke on the value of improving conversational experiences with intelligent fallback responses – vastly streamlining and enhancing the chatbot experience.

2. Great data enables great technology

You likely hear about the value of good data fairly often, and many of our speaker sessions focused on data technology as a critical starting point for forming effective digital experiences. Ted Sfikas, Senior Director of Digital Strategy & Value Engineering, Americas, of Tealium gave an insightful talk on how customer data can be reimagined as a service opportunity, and how automation technology can help oversee a data center of excellence for brands. Meanwhile, Michael Portnoy, Director of Engineering, and Dean Pearce, Senior Software Engineer of Scotiabank, dove into how analytics can be the conduit through which the power of data can be refined and scaled up to make the entire organization data-driven in its goals. Lucidworks Head of Industry, Ecommerce, Sanjay Mehta, shared with attendees how to harness first party data with the change of cookies becoming user opt-in. All of these sessions drove home the idea that innovative applications to data can fuel better digital experiences.

3. Search can unlock meaningful digital experiences

It’s no surprise that we’re passionate about the power of search. That said, it is still inspiring to hear the same passion for search reflected in so many ACTIVATE sessions. Stanislav Stolpovskiy, Search/ML Architect & Head of Search Practice with Eugene Steinberg, Technical Fellow & Head of Ecommerce at Grid Dynamics spoke on the numerous practical applications of neural search in digital commerce, including advanced product discovery systems and text-to-image models that can be leveraged to achieve true multi-modal search experiences. Element Blue walked attendees through examples of how advanced search technology can improve consumer health services and patient portal experiences by retrieving more relevant provider search results.

The summation of these takeaways is that thoughtful, inclusive digital experiences make a difference, and brands should be investing in the latest technology to build stronger connections with their users – whether they are employees or customers. We’re so thankful to our event sponsors and partner speakers who shared their own valuable insights, and couldn’t be more proud of our own Lucidizens who spoke at the event and made our attendees feel welcome.

Were you unable to attend or did attend and would like to rewatch your favorite sessions from the event? Each speaker session from ACTIVATE 2022 is streaming now on-demand. View the entire playlist here.

About Dev Bhat

Read more from this author


Contact us today to learn how Lucidworks can help your team create powerful search and discovery applications for your customers and employees.