Found Conference: A Crossroad for Digital Marketing

If you are reading this post, you probably work in some part of the digital marketing industry. Whether it’s search, advertising, social, content, or any other discipline, you know that the only constant is change. In digital marketing, change happens fast. Not only is change the norm, but the various disciplines are more interconnected than ever before. The growing intersection of search, content, and social is driving innovation, opportunities, and challenges for all of us. At DemandSphere, we understand the importance of staying on top of the evolution of the industry. In an effort to do our part to help industry professional stay abreast of the latest developments, we held our first Found Conference in 2013.

Found Conference is a place to work together, finding common ground and growth among fellow industry professionals. We have held events in San Francisco, Tokyo, New York City, and Columbus. This year, we are holding another Found Conference on September 26th, in Columbus, OH. Found Conference is a great opportunity to learn about all the latest developments in the digital marketing space. It is also a great place to network with a wide variety of professionals that work in many different disciplines.

A Unique Format

As professionals working in the digital marketing industry, we’re all too familiar with large conferences. This format often results in schedule gaps and overlaps that make it difficult to see the speakers you’d like. Inevitably 2 speakers you’d like to see are speaking at the same time. Found Conference is different. This intimate, one-day event is a chance to have conversations that matter and make a difference in your strategy. You will be able to see all speakers speak and will not have to make any choices.

Found Conference introduces a format that makes conversations happen. Here’s how it works, our speakers are selected from a variety of organization types, industries, and backgrounds. They are assigned topics, such as voice search or local content creation, and each is given five minutes and three slides to make their point. The audience is then given the following 15 minutes to discuss with the speakers the topic as a group. This is a much more engaging format than is offered at most conferences. We are excited about giving all attendees the opportunity to engage with our speakers.


We have assembled a great group of speakers from a variety of different industries, companies, and disciplines. Their diverse backgrounds will bring unique and fresh perspectives to the topics that will be discussed.

Byron Hardie

Byron currently serves as the CMO of and has over 20 years of experience in the digital marketing industry. He has been involved with search from the beginning, and helped launch the SEO industry in 1997. Since then, he has focused on full-funnel marketing and communication.

Byron believes that over the years, the lines have slowly blurred between CX, product management, and marketing. Today, SEO and search marketing includes how users consume content, transverse and interact though an experience, and change their behavior based on relevant communication. Search algorithms now include personalization and user behaviors within contextualized query models.

Through all of the industry conferences, think-tanks, round tables, panel discussions, and executive summits Byron has attended or presented at, he has noticed that the problems businesses are having are fairly consistent no matter how big or small the company is. The core issue most businesses face when it comes to SEO and search marketing is driving and sustaining growth. To achieve this, businesses must carefully identify consumer need, map empathy, speak to their customers, and understand decision triggers.

Thomas Harpointer

Thomas founded AIS Media Inc. and currently serves as its CEO. AIS Media Inc. is one of Atlanta’s leading digital marketing firms. He is a recognized subject matter expert on digital marketing strategy development and execution. He has served as a keynote speaker at trade organizations, conferences, corporate events. His recognized expertise in the digital marketing industry has led to appearances on Fox Business, Bloomberg Television, CNN Radio, CNBC, The Advertising Show, The Today Show and many other TV and radio programs. He’s been featured in publications such as Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Forbes, CFO, AJC, Fortune, and Wired.

Thomas sets AIS Media’s strategic direction and consults leading companies on digital strategy. He has led hundreds of digital marketing initiatives for clients ranging from start-ups to Fortune 500 corporations such as AT&T, Synovus Financial, Emory Healthcare, Wake Forest Innovations, Pfizer, and Maui Jim Sunglasses. Under his leadership, AIS Media has been recognized with dozens of prestigious industry awards. His wide variety of experience enables him to bring valuable insights to almost any topic concerning the digital marketing industry.

Joel Acheson

Joel leads the analytics, data science, biddable media, and organic strategy teams at The Shipyard, a digital marketing agency based in Columbus, OH. Under his guidance, his teams have built a number of tools for clients. These tools help clients get smarter about how they unify data, answer questions, and make decisions. They include cross-channel data aggregation mechanisms, custom tracking applications, a number of marketing attribution models (online and offline), programmatic bidding applications, and a few proprietary data management, analytics, and activation solutions.

Outside of applications The Shipyard has built, he also helps clients in other efforts. He provides assistance with data warehousing, DMP implementations, analytics implementations, and DSP onboarding. He assists clients in using a number of traditional tools, including Google Analytics, Google Search Console, Omniture, DemandSphere, Krux, AppNexus, DCM, Adwords, Sumologic, and several services in AWS. Joel brings his deep knowledge of digital marketing tools to Found Conference. He looks forward to providing valuable insight to any topic related to the tools we rely on daily.

Sal Surra

Sal is the Senior SEO Strategist at Angi, the online home services website headquartered in Indianapolis, IN. He has studied online marketing since before Google was invented and has seen the rise and fall of many powerhouse sites and search engines over the past two decades. His advanced technical background in HTML, CSS, javascript, and php has been instrumental developing products for online and marketing websites. These websites include some of the most well-known and iconic brands. Sal has a deep knowledge of many CMS platforms including WordPress, web developer tools like Dreamweaver, and a variety of web applications.

Sal currently manages and moderates of one of the largest WordPress communities on Google. Last year he spoke about SEO at SEMA in Las Vegas, the largest automotive aftermarket trade show in the world. Sal’s passion for the technical side of marketing and over 20 years of experience enables him to provide unique insights on anything related to technical SEO.

Hillary Glaser

Hillary is the Associate Director of Search and Content Strategy at Campbell Ewald, an advertising and marketing communications agency headquartered in Detroit, MI. She is a digital and ominichannel marketing veteran with nearly 20 years of experience. Her expertise lies in organic search, paid search, digital strategy, content writing and strategy, and social media. Her collective experience enables her to understand how these disciplines all intertwine and work together.

She has spent time living overseas and brought her unique perspective to online travel services, fashion accessory websites, e-commerce optical stores, and ancestry services that focused on the American market from a foreign standpoint. Throughout her career, she has helped various start-up companies become household names by utilizing social networking and innovative bare-bones​ marketing efforts. Her experiences enable valuable insight on branding and consumer trust, merger and acquisition negotiations, content writing, social networking, bare-bones marketing, SEO & SEM, and consumer journey mapping.

Amy Vaughan

Amy has been a storyteller ever since she could string a few words into a sentence. She currently serves as the Managing Creative Director of the business to consumer team at Epipheo, a video production company based in Cincinnati, OH. She works with business of all shapes and sizes to create “ah-ha” moments (epiphanies) through video.

Amy has been instrumental in developing Epiopheo’s creative process. She believes that it’s not about coming up with the biggest flashiest and most distracting idea. It’s about asking the right questions to reveal the moment of truth you need people to realize and feel in a way that is relevant and real. Authenticity is not something you manufacture, it’s a product of being real. At Found Conference, she looks forward to providing valuable insights on all things creative in the marketing space.

Carolyn Lyden

Carolyn Lyden is the SEO Manager at CallRail, a call tracking software company located in Atlanta, GA. As the company’s first SEO hire, she’s built the SEO program from the ground up. Her efforts have helped CallRail grow and maintain its leadership position in the call attribution software market.

Before CallRail, Carolyn managed a team of SEO Coordinators at a local marketing agency that worked mainly with franchise businesses. She focused on the nuances of local SEO, she learned the true helpfulness of the SEO community.

One of her favorite parts of working in SEO is how others are willing to share what has worked for them and what hasn’t. She looks forward to giving back to the digital marketing industry by sharing her insights on all things B2B SEO at Found Conference.

Jacob Stoops

Jacob Stoops currently serves as the Senior SEO Manager at  Search Discovery, a digital business intelligence and analytics company based in Atlanta, GA. Prior to Search Discovery, he served as the Director of Search Marketing at and Associate Director of SEO at Razorfish.

A long-time digital marketer with over a decade of SEO experience, he’s worked with some of the biggest brands in the world to grow their organic traffic. Jacob’s deep knowledge and experience provides unique insights into everything SEO related.

Michelle Law

Michelle is the Analytics Process Lead at Hileman Group, a digital marketing agency based in Cleveland, OH. In this role, she is responsible for championing the strategy and approach of analytics processes. She is a data-driven digital marketer, with a special concentration in inbound marketing.

She has a deep knowledge of optimizing PPC, SEO, and social media campaigns for clients of all verticals. Her knowledge and experience enables her to provide analytics and insights to improve campaign performance from the top of the sales funnel down. At Found Conference, she looks forward to providing insight on all things PPC, SEO, and social.

Alexis Sanders

Alexis is a Technical SEO Account Manager at Merkle, a data driven performance marketing agency headquartered in Columbia, MD. As a member of the technical SEO team, she works to ensures the accuracy, feasibility and scalability of the agency’s technical recommendations across all verticals.

She is a contributor to the Moz blog, Search Engine Land, OnCrawl, The Raven Blog, and Alexis is the creator of the challenge, and during the day lives a normal life as an SEO account manager, who tweets about SEO ~3x/day. She looks forward to sharing deep knowledge of technical SEO at Found Conference.

Kindra Svendsen

Kristen is the Director of Digital Marketing Services for Speak Creative, a full service digital agency in Memphis, TN and Nashville, TN. She has a passion for storytelling. She helps organizations understand that their brand is more than just a font and pretty colors. Kindra has nearly 10 years of experience in a variety of fields that has given her a well-rounded knowledge of the digital marketing industry.
She started her career in retail and corporate marketing, and had a short stint in advertising. Kindra found her current digital-first agency to be the perfect place to call home. She has experience in everything from sustainable search campaigns to ad-driven creative with the occasional traditional advertising plan thrown in. She looks forward to providing insights on omni-channel marketing and creating engaging strategies that meet the audience where they are.

Cassandra Schwartz

Cassandra is a Senior Product Marketing Manager at Rival IQ, a social media analytics and competitive benchmarking firm based in Seattle, WA. She is an audience-centric executive marketer and communications leader with nearly 10 years experience in content marketing, branding, social media, analytics, events, partnerships, and influencer marketing.

She uses her extensive experience with consumer-facing brands ranging from start-ups to global brands, connecting strategies, eliminating silos, and making data-driven decisions to push the boundaries and connect brands with their audience, increasing revenue and customer satisfaction.

Whether it’s launching a product, engaging a team, or completing a sale, she prides herself in being able to tell the right story. She looks forward to sharing her experiences and helping everyone tell the best story they can.

Tonnisha English

Tonnisha is the Founder of TJE Communications, LLC, a digital marketing consulting firm located in Columbus, OH. She focuses on providing email marketing, social media marketing, and public relations services to small businesses. She prides herself on helping businesses level the playing field between themselves, and large corporations.

Val Geisler

Val is an email marketer based in Columbus, OH that helps businesses increase conversions and reduce churn. Her passion and experience centers on email marketing. She focuses on email copywriting and email marketing strategy. Her goal is to develop a data driven hypothesis based on data to move people to a “yes.” This results in conversions and increased revenue. She looks forward to sharing her passion and providing unique insights for all things email marketing.

Join Us

As you can see, we have a great lineup of speakers presented in an interactive format. We are excited about the variety of different backgrounds and disciplines represented. There will be many productive and insightful conversations about the digital marketing industry and and opportunities to network with everyone that attends. We would love to have you join us for Found Conference.