Chat, Chatbots and Conversational Commerce

According to the Pew Research Center, 89% of Americans aged 18-49 own a smartphone. Text has surpassed calling and now consumers expect to be able to use chat to conduct business.

Well executed chat and chatbot experiences can help resolve customer service issues and questions quickly and effectively. Conversely, poor chat and chatbot experiences can frustrate customers.

With Amazon Echo, Google Home, Facebook Messenger, etc., more questions and transactions are taking place on smart home devices and chat platforms. Learn how to take advantage of these platforms.


Brenda Barré | Manager, Mobile and Digital Innovation | Caesars Entertainment

Brenda Barré is the Manager of Mobile and Digital Innovation at Caesars Entertainment, the world’s most diversified casino-entertainment provider and the most geographically diverse U.S. casino-entertainment company. Brenda brings a strong knowledge of enhancing the guest experience through mobile technology having successfully launched Ivy, the real-time guest text messaging program, at sixteen (16) Caesars Entertainment resorts to date comprising over 25,000 rooms. Brenda has been with Caesars Entertainment since 2012 and has served in various roles within the organization including Executive Assistant to the Chairman, President & CEO and Executive Marketing Associate to the Chief Marketing Officer. Brenda won a Caesars Award of Excellence in 2018.

Zachary Fleming | GM Digital Health | Baylor, Scott & White Health

Zachary Fleming is a fanatic problem solver and technologist that has set his sights on Healthcare. He currently serves as Digital Health GM with Baylor Scott & White Health. Zachary is responsible for reimagining the healthcare experience through harnessing modern technologies such as cloud, automation, apps, and AI. He has previously held roles as an IT strategist, PMO Portfolio specialist, Integration Architect, and non-profit entrepreneur.

Tod Szewczyk | VP, Director Emerging Technology & Innovation | Leo Burnett

As VP, Director of Emerging Technology and Innovation at Leo Burnett, Tod Szewczyk helps bring new platforms, partners and ways of working into the agency. He provides insight and best practices to successfully integrate new technologies into marketing initiatives that create immersive and engaging brand experiences. Tod has led the agency’s development of the proprietary Leovative content platform, founded Arc’s Retail Innovation Lab and Leo Burnett’s new technology Lab along with producing FutureShop/Leovative expo events. In addition, he also leads the agencies’ strategic partnership with Google. Tod’s writing has been published on the Chicago Ideas website under the “Future Today” series, in the Chicago Tribune and through Leo Burnett’s Leo Scope program.


Brandon Elliott | Sr. Director, Digital Products | HMSHost

Brandon is a first generation “digital native” who grew up with the latest technology device, game system or computer in his hands. This childhood hobby is what triggered Brandon’s life-long passion for technology and his relentless drive to create, improve, innovate and transform the way we live, work and play. Brandon specializes in information technology and is a former business owner with 24+ years of hands-on experience including engineering, development and management. He is customer centric and results driven with experience working with IT, executive management and key business personnel to bring business strategy and technology innovation together.

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