I missed my own deadline. Again. Although I didn’t manage to write this post before (until today), I did work a bit on my novel (the second one I started writing even the first one isn’t anywhere near its finish). I appreciate the time I put in my writing. Hopefully one day (near my retirement), I’ll have something published. But, back to the subject. In December I traveled with my colleague Sanja to Dublin since 404 has been shortlisted as one of top 200 Premier Google Partners in EMEA. In Dublin, we participated in Google Partners Accelerate event and Premier Partner Awards 2016. Today I’m sharing my personal experience of the entire journey.
I Wanna Get Away, I Wanna Fly Away
Our journey began with a flight from Zagreb to Cologne. As it often happens, our flight was delayed, so it was “Speedy Gonzales” through the airport in Cologne. Thankfully we managed to catch our flight in time. Once we arrived to Dublin we had to look for Google’s official transport to the hotel.
Our flight to Dublin:
But, first, we decided to eat some great sandwiches since hunger already hit us back in Germany. Afterward, while chewing some interesting chocolates that Sanja bought, we started looking for Google shuttle. I won’t lie, it took us a moment. A moment you can’t get out of it. Just moments before we went to the bus with our group, we started talking to an older, local funny guy in charge of bus transport. He asked us if we were in Dublin before, we said it was our first time. He replied: “Don’t drink Guinness.” We got a little surprised to hear that, but he explained: “I drink Guinness every day and I’m 32.” The man made a really good joke about his age! 🙂 I already started liking Dublin. Finally, we moved from the terminal to the bus. Based on the accent, I believe most of the people surrounding us in the bus were from the United Kingdom. Although, it was really great to hear other languages I don’t understand. I always appreciate diversity. It makes things more interesting.
After we got to the hotel, I decided to take a walk to the city center and Sanja decided to go for a run. It took me about 20 minutes to get there. During my walk, I noticed two stuff – every house has nice doors and only tourists stop at red light. Once I arrived at the city center, I took some pics of the Christmas tree and streets and went straight to the mall as I was on a tight schedule (just an hour for sightseeing). OK, I admit, the only store I saw there was a random tourist shop with Guinness chocolates (they’re the blast!). In the meantime, I enjoyed listening to people talk in the Irish accent. It’s funny because they have some old sayings they use in their basic greetings. While I was heading back to the hotel to get on time for our dinner reception, I noticed a guy playing bagpipes. I stopped and took some time to enjoy the music. It was just like a movie.
Tasty Irish chocolates:
Somewhere around 7 PM, we had an informal dinner with other event participants from all over EMEA. We also hang out with our new and old friends from the Adriatic market. Of course, we had to try Guinness. Or, you may read, I had to try one because I made a promise. I don’t drink alcohol normally, but I love to keep my promises, so there you go, I even have a pic of it 🙂
Guinness beer in Dublin:
After dinner, we went to a typical Dublin bar with KG Media team. It was awesome to have a great business related talk while enjoying in the Irish atmosphere.
Google Partners Accelerate event
While our first day in Dublin was more relaxed, the second day was fast paced. We had a nice breakfast, took some water and coffee supplies (and pics in between) and were ready to kick it off with Google Partners Accelerate event in the Foundry. The entire event was organized perfectly – speakers were interesting, topics were on the line and Google was a nice host. We heard a lot of stuff about digital trends, innovation, mobile, user behaviour and emotional engagement, analytics.
Marcin Karnowski, Head of SMB Marketing at Google EMEA talked about catching the next wave. Basically, with digital transformation, innovation is coming a lot faster. So, if you want to accelerate, you have to catch the innovation wave in the right time.
After Marcin, it was time for Thomas Husson, Vice President and Principal Analyst at Forrester. His presentation was one of my favorites, mostly because it was focused a lot on new trends as AI and VR, both topics I find really exciting.
Next up was Ben Tyson, Global Lead of Live Training Strategy at Google, who talked about mobile and micro-moments that matter.
Probably the best lecture for me was that of web psychologist Nathalie Nahai about engaging content from web psychology perspective. She definitely engaged me with her presentation and I wanted to learn more about the topic. I can’t wait for the release of her new book, I believe it will be awesome.
After this amazing presentation, we found out from Luigi Reggiani, Data & Analytics Advocate at Google, some new analytics trends and benchmarks and he gave a pretty good speech about the power of attribution models and consumer journey.
Later, in the afternoon sessions, it was interesting to hear how different companies organize agency-client relations and how Google hires new talent.
Premier Partner Awards 2016
In the evening, everything was ready for the Premier Partner Awards 2016. Black tie ceremony was held in an “Oscar lookalike” event venue.
There were 8 rewards and here are the winners:
- Google Premier Partner Search Performance Award 2016 – Fountain Partnership, United Kingdom
- Google Premier Partner Display Performance Award 2016 – Bluerank, Poland
- Google Premier Partners Mobile Award 2016 – Performics, United Kingdom
- Google Premier Partner Video Award 2016 – Skala Medya, Turkey
- Google Premier Partners Shopping Award 2016 – Finch Profit-driven Advertising, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, UK and USA
- Google Premier Partners Highest Customer Satisfaction Award 2016 – PUSH, United Kingdom
- Google Premier Partners Best story Award 2016 – Punk Media, South Africa
- The Outstanding Agency of the Year Award 2016 – Bluerank, Poland
Before the start of the event:
While waiting for the Awards to start, we enjoyed in tasty food (I loved this dessert):
Bluerank took home 2 of 8 awards:
Check out the official video from the entire event:
We had a great time! Google really kicked it off with the Accelerate event (pleasant atmosphere, great and interesting speakers) and we had a lot of time to catch up with colleagues from other countries and to make some new business contacts. Been there, done that, would love to repeat it! Perhaps with an award next time 🙂