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The ultimate HOTSAUCE roundup

Leading minds in product, marketing, ecommerce, and UX came together over two days to shape the future of digital experiences at HOTSAUCE—Hotjar's inaugural in-person conference. Couldn’t make or want to relive the magic one more time? Take a trip through the event from the lens of the people there—Hotjar’s core planning team, speakers, and attendees—and read about their favorite moments, top learnings, and what they’re looking forward to at HOTSAUCE 2024.

Last updated

15 Dec 2023

Reading time

3 min


Favorite moments at HOTSAUCE 2023

What made HOTSAUCE so unforgettable? Don’t just take our word for it; jump behind the scenes and relive the moments again in the words of the people who made our event come alive.

#Mohannad Ali lighting up the stage at the opening keynote
Mohannad Ali lighting up the stage at the opening keynote

To kick things off, Janna Bastow, CEO & Co-founder at ProdPad, said, "From Mohannad Ali’s roadmap for digital disruption to Ioana Teleanu’s exploration of AI in UX, each session offered a unique lens on the challenges and opportunities ahead across industries. 

Ghazal Badiozamani prompted us to reflect on the generative AI tools reshaping our work, while Ramli John and Kevan Lee painted a picture of how content, brand, and creativity can propel businesses forward. And, of course, Kyle Poyar’s session reminded us that sometimes, the most dynamic tools for growth—like pricing and packaging—are already within our grasp. It was an electrifying couple of days, where every conversation and every corridor turn brought a new idea or a new perspective."

And here's what others had to say:

Everyone helped out with social, which made it so much fun to work on! From Ben (Lipari) dressing as a chili pepper, to Adrià Cruz running out with Katie's (Doerr) music addition, to Christian (Schorm) running on stage to call for a "sauce emergency," there was so much to help bring the content to life and keep our audience engaged. It also all felt really authentic—we definitely had the vibe that we were having fun, so our social hit differently.

Chelsea Blake
Specialist Social Media Manager and Community Manager at Hotjar

Ben Lipari takes a break in between sessions in this season’s hottest one-piece: the chili pepper suit

The conference was buzzing, a hive of the brightest in digital. Entrepreneurs, tech enthusiasts, marketers—you name it, they were there. It was more than networking; it was a meeting of minds, a fusion of ideas that could shape our digital future. 

Anson Wu
Advisor, Grey Journal

My favorite moments were: meeting customers I've worked with (or my team's worked with) for several months, and watching Academy attendees share their own experiences and aha! moments with Hotjar. There was also a moment before one of the sessions where small talk between two attendees led to a genuine connection—they ended up being from the same small town and exchanged contact info!

Ashlee Bellinson
Customer Success Lead at Hotjar

Catch Ramli’s HOTSAUCE talk about how content and brand can accelerate product adoption

On Day 1, when we kicked off, and the opening video started, Mo (Mohannad Ali) did his keynote, and people took out their phones to start taking photos. This is when I relaxed and started to just enjoy the days.

Christian Schorm
Director of Brand at Hotjar

IRL screenshots at HOTSAUCE

Experiencing real-life human connections: getting to know our speakers, attendees, and colleagues outside of our online interactions.  Learning about who they are and how they are feeling at the event—their highlights and learnings. It was these one-on-one chats that energized me the most.

Nicole Gottselig
Senior Content Marketing Manager at Hotjar

But wait!, there's more!

  • 🤗 "Being backstage with the speakers and hearing about their personal stories, and also how much respect they had for each other and long-standing connections they formed." — Eva Casini, Business Operations Specialist at Hotjar

  • 😆 "Christian (Schorm) stepping on stage to call an emergency for the escaped sauce bottles." — Katie Doerr, Senior Event Planner at Hotjar 

  • 🫢 "Meeting David Darmanin in person (finally) after so many years!" — Kristina Maleeva, Sales Lead AMER at Hotjar 

  • 😎 "So many great moments!  Meeting everyone is on top of my list. The speakers were great and the whole vibe all week." — Mike Gatto, Director of Sales AMER at Hotjar

Check out Alex’s energizing HOTSAUCE  talk on how to build a brand in the attention economy

Biggest learnings from our first in-person event

What happens when you fill a room with experts in product, marketing, ecommerce, and UX? Ideas are spurred, connections are made, and connections are forged. Here are some takeaways to fuel your mind: 

While Hotjar is pretty intuitive, there's a huge appetite amongst our users to consult with an expert so they can ensure they get the most from our platform.

Ashlee Bellinson
Customer Success Lead at Hotjar

Watch Ioana Telenau exploring AI in UX on the HOTSAUCE stage

Lean on experts—outside voices that have done the work greatly helped us expedite our learnings and focus on what is important.

Christian Schorm
Director of Brand at Hotjar

The most significant takeaway from this conference was the deep sense of connection with like-minded individuals. Building personal connections with these wonderful people was a truly heartwarming experience, and it enriched my experience beyond measure.

Michael Campasano
Creative Director / Owner, Asano Designs

Teamwork makes the dream work! It was incredible to watch a group of people who for the most part had met for the first time in person come together and deliver a really great experience to both guests and speakers. Amazing what the power of a team can do and what we can accomplish together! 

Nika Ahmadi
Sales Lead at Hotjar

Not to mention …

  • 🤝 "Conferences are such a great opportunity to rally a whole team around a goal, and they should be treated as a collective responsibility, not just a department's. Even if some of us are less experienced and can contribute in lesser amounts, it's still an invaluable experience to learn the insides and outs of how a customer-facing event works." — Eva Casini, Business Operations Specialist at Hotjar

  • 🙌 "Celebrate the wins!" — Katie Doerr, Senior Event Planner at Hotjar 

  • 🫶 "Anything is possible if you put your heart and soul into it. I was so impressed by how quickly Christian (Schorm), Mattia (Santin), and team were able shape this conference into what it turned out to be!" — Mike Gatto, Director of Sales AMER at Hotjar

  • 🤲 "We added a wellness component to a two-day in-person conference but added it before the conference started and the attendance rate was null! This was a huge learning and for next time; adding these elements throughout the day will not only break up the day; but give our attendees and team a cognitive break to reset." — Nicole Gottselig, Senior Content Marketing Manager at Hotjar 

Looking ahead 

As soon as the event ended, we were already thinking about the next one—bigger!, better!, more! Here are some of the plans we have for HOTSAUCE 2024:

More facetime with Hotjar customers!

Ashlee Bellinson
Customer Success Lead at Hotjar

Bigger and better—increasing the scope of HOTSAUCE and making it even more inspiring, with more opportunities to network for our attendees and overall an even more fun event!

Christian Schorm
Director of Brand at Hotjar

Brooke B. Sellas, Founder and CEO B Squared Media LLC behind an extra large bottle of hotsauce

Elevating our offerings with more organic networking opportunities. For example, more educational roundtables, and more opportunities to have holistic well-being breaks throughout the day to connect and network with others, while recharging at the same time.

Nicole Gottselig
Senior Content Marketing Manager at Hotjar

More opportunities for interaction with the guests! Having a bigger footprint overall with more attendees! It would also be cool to invite a super Hotjar user to speak at the event and how potential insights reshaped their strategy.

Nika Ahmadi
Sales Lead at Hotjar

I’m not ready for this to end—show me more! 

The conference may be over, but you can revisit the agenda through our library of recorded talks on YouTube. Join us next year for more visionary keynotes, peer-led roundtables, Hotjar masterclasses, and new connections. 

What would you like to see more of at HOTSAUCE 2024? Let us know using the Hotjar Feedback widget—it’s that red tag to the right of the page. 👉

See you in 2024!

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