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Honoring the Best
of the Internet
Judges Spotlight December 10, 2021

Ask a Webby Judge: Liana Guzmán, Skillshare

A few questions with Liana Guzmán, Chief Marketing Officer of Skillshare, where she helps to set the online learning community's long-term strategy and drives growth. She also a new Executive Member of IADAS, who will be lending her expertise to reviewing this year's Webby Awards entries!

1. For those who don’t know, tell us a little about your background.

I’m currently the CMO at Skillshare, where we’re on a mission to inspire discovery through creativity. In that capacity, I’m responsible for helping to shape our long-term strategy, and overseeing our brand, acquisition, communications, partnerships and sales teams. Prior to joining Skillshare, I spent 4 years at, most recently as the company’s COO, where I helped the company grow its revenue, expand into new product lines and geographies, and grow its user base 10x to over 40M.

My work has landed me Forbes’ list of top 50 marketers and my philanthropic work earned me a spot on the New York Observer’s “Top 20 Philanthropists under 40” list alongside Olivia Wilde, Zac Posen and Carmelo Anthony, among others. A fan of dichotomies (which I blame on a childhood split between San Juan, Puerto Rico and Guilford, CT), I may very well be the only country music-loving, mean rice and bean-making francophile.

2. What particular expertise are you bringing to the Academy?

I’ve had the great fortune of working for some of the world’s most disruptive companies across consumer and enterprise. Much of that experience has centered on redefining industries that are steeped in precedent and has given me deep expertise in finding innovative ways to shift perceptions while connecting to users with meaning and authenticity.

3. What are you most looking forward to about reviewing this year’s Webby Awards entries?

It’s no secret that elements of our digital lives have a negative impact that we’re only just beginning to reckon with, but I also think this year has proven the profound positive impact that technology can have on our lives. When we were forced indoors, we used our digital footprints to learn new things, to find new ways to work, and to connect with family and friends. 

Our resilience has been facilitated by and reflected in our digital lives across the last 18 months. I look forward to recognizing those who, in the midst of so much upheaval and heartbreak, found ways to push the boundaries of digital storytelling and created a better world for us all in the process.

4. What does it take for a digital or immersive experience to be considered best in class?

I think for any immersive experience to be considered best in class, it needs to add real value and allow for meaningful connection and access. 

At Skillshare, we recently launched Skillshare Chroma Courses, multi-week immersive courses that tap into these very elements. These courses allow attendees to make focused progress via exclusive access to some of our platform’s most beloved teachers who give real-time guidance and feedback alongside a small cohort of fellow students.

BONUS: What’s a product or service that could have been made better?

I’m surprised we haven’t seen greater innovation in the online event space given the last year and a half. I’ve heard from so many people that the pandemic has led them to reassess what they’re willing to travel for and I expect that will shift many in-person events to the online space