Buzz Builds Among Top Speakers Before GDS International's Leading Digital & Social Media Conference iStrategy

Oct 05, 2012, 08:28 ET from GDS International

CHICAGO, October 5, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --

In less than a week the Donald E. Stephenson Convention Center will play host to GDS International's iStrategy, the global digital and marketing conference that boasts a proud history of great speakers, sell-out venues and explosive content. With only seven days until writer, comedian and digital native Baratunde Thurston opens the conference, the excitement and buzz is starting to ripple through social platforms such as Twitter and Facebook. And you thought the Ryder Cup was the end of the drama in Chicago!

Among the marquee names generating the buzz in the digital eco-system is celebrated author, speaker and CEO of Social Media Explorer, Jason Falls. "For me, iStrategy is perhaps one of the most useful conferences for marketers because it's focused on high-level marketing decision-makers as its audience," he said.

"The networking, content and relationships that stem from such an event are far more valuable than those where you've got too broad of a range of attendees or content."

Similarly, former Kodak CMO and author of best selling book Running the Gauntlet, Jeff Hayzlett, who will be closing the conference with a high octane keynote on Wednesday afternoon, will be challenging marketers to embrace necessary change and better understand how to lead and grow profits.

"iStrategy is one of my favourite events of the year, where the heads of brands and agencies [will be] focusing on high performing, integrating marketing strategies," Jeff said.

Opening the conference with a potentially polarising presentation titled: From #HorseMasturbation to #NegroSpotting: Creative Digital Storytelling That Works, former Onion Digital Director and author of How To Be Black, Baratunde Thurston will bring both humour and cutting-edge content to his keynote. "I'm really looking forward to 21st Century Measurement for 21st Century Communications. But I hope [to] push the envelope with some real long-term thinking. Let's look at the 22nd century, as people need to line up their investments now," Baratunde observed.

Other great speakers include: Jay Basnight, Head of Digital, Puma; Julia Fitzgerald, Chief Digital Engagement Officer, Sears Holdings; Colin Westcott-Pitt, VP Marketing; Heineken; Brad Taylor, VP Customer Marketing, Coca Cola.

Richard Stirk, GDS International's VP of Conferences is excited at the prospect of what he believes will be the best line up of talent that iStrategy has ever featured. "At iStrategy, we pride ourselves on showcasing original, exciting thinkers who can marry their content with clear, actionable takeaways and the speakers at iStrategy Chicago will be no exception. We truly believe that pushing boundaries and challenging common conceptions are critical to breaking down the walls of traditional marketing and with the inclusion of polarising speakers such as Baratunde Thurston, we believe we optimise our attendees' experience with bespoke digital content.  

"Of course, as well as our pioneering speakers, iStrategy offers ample networking opportunities and we hope to give the 500 plus attendees the most compelling, engaging and relevant conference in the digital industry."

To book your place at iStrategy Chicago 9-10 October, and join 500 other senior digital marketers, click here:

But do hurry, tickets are limited.

About GDS International

GDS International is one of the most innovative events and media companies worldwide - and a globally renowned producer of business-to-business summits, conferences, online information and advisory group gatherings. Founded in 1993, GDS International specialises in meeting the B2B marketing needs of our clients. Having a strong presence in mature industrial sectors but a finger on the pulse of emerging markets - as well as up-and-coming B2B business verticals - means we are perfectly placed to capitalise on the exciting developments brought about by the advent of a globalised economy. Our value proposition is simple: we deliver tangible business results from world-class events.

Contact: Kimberley Hogarth

SOURCE GDS International