PRE-CONFERENCE WORKSHOPS:

Monday, March 27

9-10:30 a.m.

Big 5 social media boot camp

Your customers, employees and other vital audiences communicate on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Snapchat, Instagram and other social networks. Research shows that’s also where they increasingly get their news. It’s where they figure out what to buy, where to work and whom to trust. Ignoring social networks is not an option. Nor is a non-strategic attitude to your company’s presence there. Digital expert Shel Holtz will bring you up to speed on the latest features from the top social networks. He’ll introduce you to strategies and tactics that will differentiate your online communication from the rest. You’ll take back to the office more ideas than you can imagine from this 90-minute pre-conference session! You’ll deliver results that go beyond likes and shares. You’ll get results that contribute to your company’s biggest business goals:

  • Get familiar with channel management, the one method the smartest companies use that avoids the “too many networks” syndrome
  • Learn how to build thought leadership on LinkedIn Publishing
  • Build your company’s reputation in LinkedIn and Facebook Groups
  • Know when images work better than text and when video works better than images
  • How to optimize your videos for each network
  • Find out how the best CEOs maintain a business identity on Facebook (and how they stay engaged on other networks)
  • Use Snapchat without spending millions. Never again suffer from too-few analytics!
  • Why multiple Facebook Pages may be best for your company
  • Why you should embrace live-streaming media on Facebook and Twitter
  • How public social networks can elevate your employee communications
CEO
Holtz Communication + Technology
Read bio
10:45 a.m.-12:15 p.m.

Master measuring social media success, even if you're a team of one!

Social media analytics let PR, marketing and social media professionals assess their tactical effectiveness, understand customer behavior and mine strategic insights. Whether you’re a team of one or many, you can easily set up social- media measurement that will set your organization apart from its competitors. 

You’ll learn how to:

  • Identify measurement tools that give you the insights to surpass your PR and marketing goals
  • Select social media metrics appropriate for your PR and marketing goals
  • Launch social media measurement that targets your audiences and your business goals without busting your budget
  • Report the social media metrics that show leaders your progress on meeting business goals
  • Adjust your social media strategy to get a competitive advantage
Formerly Lockheed Martin Corporation Lecturer
University of Maryland
Read bio
12:15-1:15 p.m.

Lunch (provided onsite)

1:15-2:45 p.m.

How to develop an editorial process that works for mobile, web, email and social media

So many channels to fill, so little time. That’s the constant lament of digital communicators, who want to publish stories for their audiences in multiple formats, on many vehicles. But how do you deliver the best content to the right channels? The answer is the “News Desk,” an editorial process that assembles communicators across disciplines (PR, marketing, and internal comms) to plan, execute and deliver great content.

In this session, veteran journalist, teacher and communications consultant Jim Ylisela will show you how to apply the News Desk to the content needs of your organization, regardless of your industry, the size of your staff or the level of their skills.

In true journalistic style, this 90-minute session will reveal:

  • Who should sit on your News Desk—and each person’s roles and responsibilities
  • What topics and stories lend themselves to multiple formats and channels
  • When the News Desk should plan, publish and distribute digital content
  • Where your stories should land—and where they should go first
  • Why some stories work better in some digital channels than others
  • And how to set up an editorial process that eliminates random posting, content chaos and an uneven publishing schedule
President
Ragan Consulting
Read bio
3-4:30 p.m.

Write for today’s audiences: How to switch gears to write effectively for print, online content, social media, and multimedia channels

Modern writers wear a lot of hats. They still have to write for traditional print publications, websites and intranets. But they also must create content for social media: blogs, Facebook and Twitter. And, if they’re smart, they should also think about writing for multimedia channels: video and podcasts. In this session, Steve Crescenzo will show you how to:

  • Shift gears and change your writing style when you move between blogs, traditional stories, podcasts, print writing and writing for the web
  • Apply traditional journalism rules for great writing to every vehicle you write for
  • Inject personality and voice into your writing when you create content for social media
  • Master the two kinds of writing needed to succeed online
  • Re-shape one piece of content for several online outlets
  • Master the conversational style needed for social media
CEO
Crescenzo Communications
Read bio

TRACK 1: Social Media Strategies for PR & Marketing

Tuesday, March 28

7-7:45 a.m.

Best strategies to tackle internal communications barriers to engagement

Ragan and RMG have recently distributed, collected and analyzed a conclusive survey that reveals the most pressing internal communications challenges and priorities facing the industry today.

It’s not surprising that better employee communication becomes more important to corporate communicators every year. Too many emails, not enough staff, the growing urgency of engaging employees and unsatisfactory solutions to reach mobile, non-desk employees in the field are the top issues that surfaced in our survey.

Join Bob Michelson, CEO of RMG as he reveals telling stats from this survey. Bob will offer new ideas on how to deal with your most pressing internal comms concerns. He’ll discuss in more detail tangible practical solutions to your internal comms roadblocks.

Enjoy a delicious complimentary breakfast and this special presentation. You’ll learn:

  • Implications of the 5 most pressing internal communication obstacles uncovered in the survey
  • Strategies and solutions companies employ to overcome these problems fast
  • Highlights of the latest technology that emphasizes mobile means to reach every employee with critical messages
  • The latest best practices companies employ to increase the personalization and quantity of their content
  • Why personalization and quantity greatly improve employee engagement

Registered attendees will receive an email invitation—reservations requested but not mandatory.

President and CEO
RMG
Read bio
8-8:15 a.m.

Welcome remarks with Mark Ragan, CEO, Ragan Communications Inc.

8:15-9 a.m.

Opening keynote:
Social momentum: The simple secret smart brands employ to turn routine content into extraordinary success!

We’re creating more content than ever before. With every post we publish, infographic we upload, or video we produce we’re hoping (maybe even praying) that today’s content will outshine yesterday’s. The world’s smartest brands don’t hope for success: they predict it. Their success doesn’t come from re-working content, it comes from re-thinking content distribution and promotion strategy.

In this action-packed keynote, best-selling author Andrew Davis will reveal their secrets. He’ll show you how they capitalize on—not create—social momentum that turns ordinary content into sensational buzz. You’ll learn how paid, owned, and earned media transform posts into new coverage. See how the Waterfall Effect gets huge media attention. Most important, you’ll know how to appeal to the audience you already have to spark bigger success.

Best-selling author and acclaimed speaker
Monumental Shift
Read bio
9:15-10 a.m.

Social listening: Fuel your business and deliver real-time results

Are you listening? Should you be? Often we focus on what we want to say to our audience rather than taking the time to hear what they’re telling us. When you learn what to listen for, and what to do with it, your social platforms suddenly become your most valuable business tool.

As a specialist on Southwest Airlines’ Social Business Team, Adam Hernandez helped embed social into every aspect of Southwest. He will make the case for listening, and show you how to use it to transform the way you do social.

You’ll learn how to:

  • Set up a social-listening system that turns noise into customers’ voices
  • Identify key social opportunities so you respond to customers in real time
  • Learn more about your customers and audience to keep your brand relevant
  • Create audience connections that get more powerful brand loyalty
  • Use customer stories to promote your business
  • Activate real-time marketing to surpass business goals
Social Business Team Specialist
Southwest Airlines
Read bio
10:15-11 a.m.

General session:
Use communications and social media to change the narrative during a crisis: A case study from Target’s security breach

In December 2013, Target experienced one of the worst crises in its history when hackers breached the company’s security and stole guest data. Hear from Target’s head of communication about what it was like during the early days of the data breach and how communication and social media played a critical role in turning around the company’s narrative.

You’ll learn:

  • How Target got the utmost out of its communication and social media
  • Why a company’s transformation often needs to start with its employees
  • The ultra-importance of transparency when you talk to customers, even when your message isn’t positive
  • How to break down silos to enable effective collaboration and quick decision-making
  • The power of creating compelling content that breaks through the clutter
  • Why it’s critical to listen to and engage with your customers—in good times and bad
  • How Target went back to its roots to build back trust and grow brand love

 

Chief Communication Officer
Target
Read bio
11:15 a.m.-noon

Social livestreaming: Create communities and engage your audiences in real time

In the past few years, the barriers to entry for live broadcasting shrank considerably. Now, anyone with a smartphone and strong Internet connection can stream to a worldwide audience instantly from anywhere around the globe. Savvy marketers scramble to add live video to their campaign strategies. But consumers are savvy, too. To be successful, you must understand how, when and what to broadcast. In this session, Tim Greenberg from the World Surf League explains how WSL has embraced live streaming to engage and grow its audience. From hanging out with surfing stars to staff travel adventures, you’ll learn how WSL gives fans inside access and a personal connection to its organization, and how you can do the same.

You’ll learn:

  • Livestreaming best practices to maximize fan reach and engagement
  • How to find your brand voice and use it to craft live content that tells a story
  • How experimenting with new ideas and technology can enhance your product
  • How fan feedback and analytics can help you improve future broadcasts
  • Emerging trends and how to spot those that will inspire innovation
Chief Community Officer
World Surf League
Read bio
Noon-1 p.m.

Networking lunch (provided onsite)

1:15-2 p.m.

Keynote:
Deliver amazing customer experiences in a transformed digital world

We live in astonishing times. In 25 years we have seen the birth of the internet, mobile and social media. These technologies have connected individuals and given them voices and power. We will live in a world where everything is known about a company, so we must be transparent. It’s no longer what we say about our brand; it’s what others say. Our customers expect we will find new ways to engage and interact with them. They make the rules. They chose the channels and how and when we engage with them.

Welcome to the new world of digital disruption. Come engage with Carlos Dominguez in his interactive presentation on how brands can deliver great customer experiences in an omni-channel world. We must move our organization from brand-centric to customer-centric. Carlos will share best practices and suggestions on how to get digital transformation in your entire company. It’s no longer an option, it’s survival.

2:15-3 p.m.

Customer service in the comment section: TSA reveals how to use social media as a real-time customer service tool

The U.S. Transportation Security Administration has taken steps to make your next flight as stress-free as possible. It solves unexpected problems—and does it in a very public way. Find out how AskTSA has transformed the agency’s reputation. See how TSA became a responsive, customer-oriented service. Find out how you can launch and expand your social media customer service program. Learn how to work with partners to create a platform that’s as easy to use as talking to your friends. This session is a roadmap to develop a new program or expand an existing one. Perform superb customer care on tools like Facebook Messenger. Put to use the talents and skills of employees in every part of your organization. You’ll learn how to use customer feedback to improve your organization’s operations and stay on top of trending PR issues.

You’ll learn how to:

  • Build a genuine connection with the people who interact with your organization on Facebook Messenger and Twitter
  • Develop a social customer care program that helps your organization exceed its business goals
  • Partner with social engagement teams in your field to improve your customers’ experience
  • Integrate your customer care with your blog and Instagram site to better inform customers about news and info they want and need
  • Create metrics reports and tag engagements to show leaders your progress toward goals
  • Establish a tone and style that represents your agency
  • Attract media coverage of your social media accounts to expand your reach and grow your service
Director of External Communications
U.S. Transportation Security Administration
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Social Media Analyst
U.S. Transportation Security Administration
Read bio
3-3:30 p.m.

Networking break

3:30-4:15 p.m.

From research to ROI: How to use data to craft content that delivers on marketing and PR goals

Why create content that no one wants or needs? Whether your organization is large or small, your content can and should engage your audience. Use data to propel your in-house experts into thought leaders. Cultivate internal influencers to increase your brand visibility and meet organizational goals. Get a look behind the scenes at the thought-leader tactics used by Adobe to produce some of its largest PR successes. Learn how to apply them to your own organization to get real business results.

You’ll learn how to:

  • Gather and interpret data for company-branded thought leadership from internal influencers
  • Identify the creative, communications and paid-content elements needed to elicit comments, likes and shares for your branded content
  • Determine what success looks like and what metrics to track to analyze the ROI of each piece of content
  • Troubleshoot problems to ensure your thought leaders are guiding your followers in the right direction
Head of Social Insights
Adobe
Read bio
4:30-5:30 p.m.

Disney Parks: Creating ‘endless magic’ with storytelling

In this special keynote, Thomas Smith, editorial content director at Disney Parks and founder of the award-winning Disney Parks Blog, will share a series of real world examples showing how purposeful storytelling generates remarkable results. He will lead a behind-the-scenes “tour” of the successful Disney Parks editorial content program and show how different content experiences are consistently used to entertain, educate and inform audiences across the globe.

You’ll also learn:

  • How emotional storytelling cuts through the clutter to reach audiences
  • The power of consistent, purposeful content experiences
  • Secrets for moving a newsroom-based content program into the future
  • Why moving forward and trying new things drive a content growth strategy
  • The Disney Parks approach to planning/distributing editorial content
Editorial Content Director
Disney Parks
Read bio
6-8 p.m.

Networking cocktail party, courtesy of Disney Parks

Join your peers and conference speakers on the beach for a networking party, sprinkled with Disney magic. Enjoy great conversations and superb food and drink. Bring your camera for photo ops with special guests!

Wednesday, March 29

8:30-9:15 a.m.

From boring brand to adoring fans: How being real on social media will connect any organization with a loyal, growing audience

We all have an audience (No, really!), and competition for that audience is the noisiest it’s ever been. Break through that noise and deliver content that connects with people who may not have considered your information valuable. Discover how to change your organization’s image by delighting your audience and capturing their hearts.

Jeremy Bertrand of the Washington State Department of Transportation will show how his agency used humor, honesty, useful news and touching stories to build trust and gain more than 200,000 followers. His department generated posts that reached more than a million people. His posts were mentioned on Good Morning America and ABC Nightly News.

You’ll learn how to:

  • Mine your organization for stories and messages that create surprise and delight and increase your followers
  • Use social media for visible, valuable conversations that pay off in a loyal fan base that defends your brand
  • Connect with your audience as people, not data points, who will help you develop a more responsive, human organization
  • Be authentic so people trust you and your information
  • Stop counting likes; deliver qualitative reports that influence your bosses
  • Zero in on the channels that get information to people where they are
Digital Strategist
Washington State Department of Transportation
Read bio
9:30-10:15 a.m.

Millennials and Gen Z are people, too: The X, Y and Z of engaging with your audience

Your news feed bulges with adorable cat videos. Your email inbox overflows with coupons. Your job is marketing or PR, but your audiences don’t want to be marketed to, and don’t trust messages straight from the brand. How do you get your story out? Niki Smith of Drake University and you will break it down. You’ll reach the elusive Millennial and the generation to come. Niki will explain the context of the prevailing attitudes and purchasing behaviors of Millennials and Gen Z. She’ll walk you through Drake’s successful engagement programs and show you tips and tricks you can apply to your organization. Put that herd of cats on the run!

You will learn how to:

  • De-clutter the incoming content barrage so you can focus on the gems
  • Streamline your audience research to make time to produce content that hits home
  • Take advantage of crowdsourcing and what works for your particular audiences
  • Be authentic because Millennials know when your story is fake
  • Find free apps and monitoring sites to get to know your audience
Digital Media Strategist
Drake University
Read bio
10:15-11:15 a.m.

The magic of storytelling: Uncovering stories within your organization to build brand loyalty and grow audiences

Once upon a time communicators had the luxury of crafting long-form feature stories to artfully weave together their company’s narrative. Now, shrinking attention spans demand content that is clear, concise and moving.  At the Walt Disney World Resort, the team has devised an editorial process that marries strategy with storytelling to grow audiences and enhance its reputation.

In this session you’ll learn how to:

  • Build your social media strategy based on key reputation drivers
  • Bring content owners together to identify the most impactful opportunities
  • Tell your company’s story through the passion of the people who work there
  • Amplify content across internal and external platforms
  • Find the story in the situation in order to give your readers the “happily ever after” they are looking for
Senior communications manager
Walt Disney World Resort
Read bio
11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Closing keynote:
Can you really have “too many social channels”? Out-of-this-world social media with NASA

You know what they say: It’s all about content. NASA does not have a big budget for social media and yet its highly diversified portfolio—over 500 social accounts on 14 platforms—elevates mankind from mere observer to participant in space exploration by connecting Earth dwellers with astronauts via online Q&As, live events called NASA Socials and giving followers the virtual experience of a spacewalk via spectacular video footage of our planet from outside the International Space Station. In its quest to provoke that “aha!” moment among those for whom space is too distant a concept, NASA explores new ways social media is woven into our lives and stations itself at the center of that universe.

Hear from and talk with NASA’s social media manager, John Yembrick, who has championed social media with­in NASA and has a mission “to bring space down to Earth” for everyone. You will learn NASA’s best practices in using social media to build a strong community, rally public support, improve public perception, and gather input to influence decision making.

In this session you will learn how to:

  • Package content to inspire and engage an audience
  • Tackle new platforms and reach new audiences
  • Take online experience offline, and give followers an in-person experience
  • Engage with influencers and get user-generated content to tell your story
  • Transform into a digital organization that makes employees think differently about their jobs
  • Organize and manage 500+ social media account users in your organization
Social Media Manager
NASA
Read bio

TRACK 2: Social Media Strategies For Internal Communications

Tuesday, March 28

7-7:45 a.m.

Best strategies to tackle internal communications barriers to engagement

Ragan and RMG have recently distributed, collected and analyzed a conclusive survey that reveals the most pressing internal communications challenges and priorities facing the industry today.

It’s not surprising that better employee communication becomes more important to corporate communicators every year. Too many emails, not enough staff, the growing urgency of engaging employees and unsatisfactory solutions to reach mobile, non-desk employees in the field are the top issues that surfaced in our survey.

Join Bob Michelson, CEO of RMG as he reveals telling stats from this survey. Bob will offer new ideas on how to deal with your most pressing internal comms concerns. He’ll discuss in more detail tangible practical solutions to your internal comms roadblocks.

Enjoy a delicious complimentary breakfast and this special presentation. You’ll learn:

  • Implications of the 5 most pressing internal communication obstacles uncovered in the survey
  • Strategies and solutions companies employ to overcome these problems fast
  • Highlights of the latest technology that emphasizes mobile means to reach every employee with critical messages
  • The latest best practices companies employ to increase the personalization and quantity of their content
  • Why personalization and quantity greatly improve employee engagement

Registered attendees will receive an email invitation—reservations requested but not mandatory.

President and CEO
RMG
Read bio
8-8:15 a.m.

Welcome remarks with Mark Ragan, CEO, Ragan Communications Inc.

8:15-9 a.m.

Opening keynote:
Social momentum: The simple secret smart brands employ to turn routine content into extraordinary success!

We’re creating more content than ever before. With every post we publish, infographic we upload, or video we produce we’re hoping (maybe even praying) that today’s content will outshine yesterday’s. The world’s smartest brands don’t hope for success: they predict it. Their success doesn’t come from re-working content, it comes from re-thinking content distribution and promotion strategy.

In this action-packed keynote, best-selling author Andrew Davis will reveal their secrets. He’ll show you how they capitalize on—not create—social momentum that turns ordinary content into sensational buzz. You’ll learn how paid, owned, and earned media transform posts into new coverage. See how the Waterfall Effect gets huge media attention. Most important, you’ll know how to appeal to the audience you already have to spark bigger success.

Best-selling author and acclaimed speaker
Monumental Shift
Read bio
9:15-10 a.m.

Down to basics: The building blocks of a winning digital strategy

Digital strategies go out of date the moment they are written. How can we develop and execute strategies with a shelf-life of zero?  Forget about buying followers, bots and vanity metrics. Eschewing some of the most overused, misunderstood words in the digital world, Dan and Chad will talk plainly about a winning digital and social strategy for your internal stakeholders as well as your external audiences. They’ll share the highs and the lows from the world’s largest company and supply you with ideas you can take back and use at your work.  

 You’ll learn:

  • The secrets you need to complete your quest to empower employees
  • The best ways to stretch those limited social dollars
  • How to avoid the “shiny object syndrome” by homing in on emerging tech and platforms that make sense
  • How to stop building walls and start building the bridges you need to integrate social into your entire business
  • The 3 S’s of digital transformation—strategy, staff and structure
Senior Director, Digital Communications
Walmart
Read bio
Senior Director, Global Associate Communications
Walmart
Read bio
10:15-11 a.m.

General session:
Use communications and social media to change the narrative during a crisis: A case study from Target’s security breach

In December 2013, Target experienced one of the worst crises in its history when hackers breached the company’s security and stole guest data. Hear from Target’s head of communication about what it was like during the early days of the data breach and how communication and social media played a critical role in turning around the company’s narrative. 

You’ll learn:

  • How Target got the utmost out of its communication and social media
  • Why a company’s transformation often needs to start with its employees
  • The ultra-importance of transparency when you talk to customers, even when your message isn’t positive  
  • How to break down silos to enable effective collaboration and quick decision-making
  • The power of creating compelling content that breaks through the clutter
  • Why it’s critical to listen to and engage with your customers—in good times and bad
  • How Target went back to its roots to build back trust and grow brand love
Chief Communication Officer
Target
Read bio
11:15-noon

How to maximize social media with a small team

Creating and maintaining a presence for your brand or organization on social media can be a 24/7 job for a sizable team. What happens when you have a small team or you are the lone superstar? Executing your company’s social media strategy with a small team—and small budget—can overwhelm. Learn tips and tools to manage social media well, no matter how lean your team.

You’ll learn:

  • Ways to scale social media content to get the most out of your content
  • To identify the right tools for your team to organize itself, to streamline social-media management and to boost results
  • Quick insights to craft better content and optimize its timing and frequency of distribution
  • How to collaborate better with internal stakeholders to empower employees as brand advocates
  • Ways to re-package user-generated features and stories to build a steady stream of content that keeps customers interested
Director of Digital Engagement & Social Media
Georgetown University
Read bio
Noon-1 p.m.

Networking lunch (provided onsite)

1:15-2 p.m.

Keynote:
Deliver amazing customer experiences in a transformed digital world

We live in astonishing times. In 25 years we have seen the birth of the internet, mobile and social media. These technologies have connected individuals and given them voices and power. We will live in a world where everything is known about a company, so we must be transparent. It’s no longer what we say about our brand; it’s what others say. Our customers expect we will find new ways to engage and interact with them. They make the rules. They chose the channels and how and when we engage with them.

Welcome to the new world of digital disruption. Come engage with Carlos Dominguez in his interactive presentation on how brands can deliver great customer experiences in an omni-channel world. We must move our organization from brand-centric to customer-centric. Carlos will share best practices and suggestions on how to get digital transformation in your entire company. It’s no longer an option, it’s survival.

2:15-3 p.m.

How to build an employment brand using social—the Cisco way!

One year ago, the Cisco Talent Brand team accepted a mission: To make personal connections with Cisco employees to show future employees how they can change the world at Cisco. Cisco’s Talent Brand team is small but mighty. They have embraced the “We” in WeAreCisco by allowing employees to use their voice to amplify internal conversations. It’s more human and it’s working. Come learn actions you can perform NOW in social to transform your talent brand and attract the right talent.

You’ll learn how to:

  • Tailor your branding to each social media channel to recruit top talent
  • Cope with budget constraints: Amplify your employment brand with limited resources
  • Recognize and reward employee behavior that exceeds norms
  • Entice talent using Snapchat; Unleash employees and trust them to share stories
Director, Human Resources People, Culture and Talent Brand
Cisco
Read bio
3-3:30 p.m.

Networking break

3:30-4:15 p.m.

How to use video to engage employees and attract customers

If used properly, video can motivate and inspire action in your employees while reaching out to your customers. Corporate videos can also be used to attract new talent—a well-executed video is a great way to promote a strong organizational culture. Have you seized the opportunity? Or do you worry that you’ve missed the mark?

If you are looking for corporate video tips and tricks, you don’t want to miss this session. Todd Johnson, president at Kollective, will show you how to use video across social platforms to expand the reach of your brand while addressing both internal and external audiences. See how using externally-focused messaging can help power your employer brand and employee engagement.

You will also:

  • Look at how to use YouTube, Facebook and Twitter across audience segments
  • Learn how to link strategy and messaging for internal engagement
  • See how to drive your employer brand and learn why it matters to current employees
Chairman and President
Kollective
Read bio
4:30-5:30 p.m.

Disney Parks: Creating ‘endless magic’ with storytelling

In this special keynote, Thomas Smith, editorial content director at Disney Parks and founder of the award-winning Disney Parks Blog, will share a series of real world examples showing how purposeful storytelling generates remarkable results. He will lead a behind-the-scenes “tour” of the successful Disney Parks editorial content program and show how different content experiences are consistently used to entertain, educate and inform audiences across the globe.

You’ll also learn:

  • How emotional storytelling cuts through the clutter to reach audiences
  • The power of consistent, purposeful content experiences
  • Secrets for moving a newsroom-based content program into the future
  • Why moving forward and trying new things drive a content growth strategy
  • The Disney Parks approach to planning/distributing editorial content
Editorial Content Director
Disney Parks
Read bio
6-8 p.m.

Networking cocktail party, courtesy of Disney Parks

Join your peers and conference speakers on the beach for a networking party, sprinkled with Disney magic. Enjoy great conversations and superb food and drink. Bring your camera for photo ops with special guests!

Wednesday, March 29

8:30-9:15 a.m.

Unearth the spirit of your brand through social storytelling

We all know the power of storytelling. Stories spark emotion. Appeal to our humanity. They connect and engage us. They’re fun to listen to! But between trying to find their social voice, and using storytelling exclusively to humanize their brands, organizations have neglected the essence of their mission and vision, and at times failed to incorporate their brands into their stories. In this session you will learn how to find your brand’s true social voice and build your story on your mission and vision.

After this session, you will be able to:

  • Define the spirit of your brand and make it stand out in a competitive field
  • Use digital-storytelling best practices to influence how people think and feel about your brand
  • Bring your mission and vision to life through storytelling—personality, tone and purpose
  • Write a brand story that reads consistently on ALL social communications
Sr. Lead Community and Social Media Support
Microsoft
Read bio
10:30-11:15 a.m.

Create a social intranet to connect a global staff and open up lines of communication

A strategic intranet should integrate social technology to deliver faster, more relevant and transparent networked communications to knowledge workers. A social intranet helps your employees find answers, build best practices and locate resources in your enterprise while it supports employee engagement and reinforces goal-oriented behavior! This practical session will provide insight into how to connect employees across functions without geographic constraints, including how to:

  • Deliver a social experience that unfolds at every level in your organization
  • Develop communities of practice and affiliations that improve collaboration
  • Cater to varying work styles, business needs and devices to spur adoption
Senior Corporate Web Strategy Specialist
QuintilesIMS
Read bio
11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Closing keynote:
Can you really have “too many social channels”? Out-of-this-world social media with NASA

You know what they say: It’s all about content. NASA does not have a big budget for social media and yet its highly diversified portfolio—over 500 social accounts on 14 platforms—elevates mankind from mere observer to participant in space exploration by connecting Earth dwellers with astronauts via online Q&As, live events called NASA Socials and giving followers the virtual experience of a spacewalk via spectacular video footage of our planet from outside the International Space Station. In its quest to provoke that “aha!” moment among those for whom space is too distant a concept, NASA explores new ways social media is woven into our lives and stations itself at the center of that universe.

Hear from and talk with NASA’s social media manager, John Yembrick, who has championed social media with­in NASA and has a mission “to bring space down to Earth” for everyone. You will learn NASA’s best practices in using social media to build a strong community, rally public support, improve public perception, and gather input to influence decision making.

In this session you will learn how to:

  • Package content to inspire and engage an audience
  • Tackle new platforms and reach new audiences
  • Take online experience offline, and give followers an in-person experience
  • Engage with influencers and get user-generated content to tell your story
  • Transform into a digital organization that makes employees think differently about their jobs
  • Organize and manage 500+ social media account users in your organization
Social Media Manager
NASA
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TRACK 3: What's Next On Social Media Platforms

Tuesday, March 28

7-7:45 a.m.

Best strategies to tackle internal communications barriers to engagement

Ragan and RMG have recently distributed, collected and analyzed a conclusive survey that reveals the most pressing internal communications challenges and priorities facing the industry today.

It’s not surprising that better employee communication becomes more important to corporate communicators every year. Too many emails, not enough staff, the growing urgency of engaging employees and unsatisfactory solutions to reach mobile, non-desk employees in the field are the top issues that surfaced in our survey.

Join Bob Michelson, CEO of RMG as he reveals telling stats from this survey. Bob will offer new ideas on how to deal with your most pressing internal comms concerns. He’ll discuss in more detail tangible practical solutions to your internal comms roadblocks.

Enjoy a delicious complimentary breakfast and this special presentation. You’ll learn:

  • Implications of the 5 most pressing internal communication obstacles uncovered in the survey
  • Strategies and solutions companies employ to overcome these problems fast
  • Highlights of the latest technology that emphasizes mobile means to reach every employee with critical messages
  • The latest best practices companies employ to increase the personalization and quantity of their content
  • Why personalization and quantity greatly improve employee engagement

Registered attendees will receive an email invitation—reservations requested but not mandatory.

President and CEO
RMG
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8-8:15 a.m.

Welcome remarks with Mark Ragan, CEO, Ragan Communications Inc.

8:15-9 a.m.

Opening keynote:
Social momentum: The simple secret smart brands employ to turn routine content into extraordinary success!

We’re creating more content than ever before. With every post we publish, infographic we upload, or video we produce we’re hoping (maybe even praying) that today’s content will outshine yesterday’s. The world’s smartest brands don’t hope for success: they predict it. Their success doesn’t come from re-working content, it comes from re-thinking content distribution and promotion strategy.

In this action-packed keynote, best-selling author Andrew Davis will reveal their secrets. He’ll show you how they capitalize on—not create—social momentum that turns ordinary content into sensational buzz. You’ll learn how paid, owned, and earned media transform posts into new coverage. See how the Waterfall Effect gets huge media attention. Most important, you’ll know how to appeal to the audience you already have to spark bigger success.

Best-selling author and acclaimed speaker
Monumental Shift
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9:15-10 a.m.

How to use Facebook to connect with a global audience

Facebook is the largest social network in the world and offers business leaders an authentic way to engage with new and existing customers. It’s the new town hall for business leaders to engage employees, customers, partners and other stakeholders. More than a billion people each day spend 45 minutes on Facebook. You can reach existing and new audiences with a flexible set of publishing tools to share your stories, short or long, in text, photos, videos, Q&As, and more. Learn from Facebook Strategic Partner Development Manager Craig Mullaney why Facebook is the quintessential business tool today.

You’ll learn:

  • Why communication is the best tool to motivate employees and boost your brand
  • Best practices to help you meet your business goals
  • Top techniques for communicating in a distinctive voice on Facebook
  • How to influence and build trust in a global audience—with examples and takeaways
Strategic Partner Development Manager
Facebook
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Director
Workplace by Facebook
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10:15-11 a.m.

General session:
Use communications and social media to change the narrative during a crisis: A case study from Target’s security breach

In December 2013, Target experienced one of the worst crises in its history when hackers breached the company’s security and stole guest data. Hear from Target’s head of communication about what it was like during the early days of the data breach and how communication and social media played a critical role in turning around the company’s narrative. 

You’ll learn:

  • How Target got the utmost out of its communication and social media
  • Why a company’s transformation often needs to start with its employees
  • The ultra-importance of transparency when you talk to customers, even when your message isn’t positive  
  • How to break down silos to enable effective collaboration and quick decision-making
  • The power of creating compelling content that breaks through the clutter
  • Why it’s critical to listen to and engage with your customers—in good times and bad
  • How Target went back to its roots to build back trust and grow brand love
Chief Communication Officer
Target
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11:15 a.m.-noon

Your company has amazing stories to tell: Uncover, capture and share them

It’s time to see your organization from a different perspective. You can capture and share authentic stories about your company and leaders in both photographs and video. You’ll walk away from this session inspired to engage in a new form of social storytelling that will positively reframe your brand and captivate all your audiences.

You will learn:

 

  • How to use images and stories to communicate a deeper connection with your audience
  • The key elements of a great photo that makes it engaging and shareable on social platforms
  • The tools you can use to capture an unforgettable image – no matter what size budget you’re working with
Artist in Residence
Instagram
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Noon-1 p.m.

Networking lunch (provided onsite)

1:15-2 p.m.

Keynote:
Deliver amazing customer experiences in a transformed digital world

We live in astonishing times. In 25 years we have seen the birth of the internet, mobile and social media. These technologies have connected individuals and given them voices and power. We will live in a world where everything is known about a company, so we must be transparent. It’s no longer what we say about our brand; it’s what others say. Our customers expect we will find new ways to engage and interact with them. They make the rules. They chose the channels and how and when we engage with them.

Welcome to the new world of digital disruption. Come engage with Carlos Dominguez in his interactive presentation on how brands can deliver great customer experiences in an omni-channel world. We must move our organization from brand-centric to customer-centric. Carlos will share best practices and suggestions on how to get digital transformation in your entire company. It’s no longer an option, it’s survival.

2:15-3 p.m.

Get ready for virtual, augmented, and mixed reality

The hype is inescapable. Movie theaters are being outfitted with virtual reality headsets. New York is planning a publicly-funded $6 million VR hub. VR is solving all kinds of healthcare problems. Augmented reality and VR spending will double in 2017 to nearly $14 billion. You may be able to watch an NFL football game from the middle of the field using a VR headset. Apple is investing heavily in augmented reality. Media companies, marketers, and advertisers are jumping on board.  Communication technology consultant Shel Holtz will set the alternate-reality table for you.

You will learn:

 

  • Where we are now with virtual reality, augmented reality, and mixed reality – and where it’s all headed
  • How these technologies will affect organizational communications
  • Examples of how these technologies are being used now, and how they will impact communications in the years ahead
CEO
Holtz Communication + Technology
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3-3:30 p.m.

Networking break

3:30-4:15 p.m.

What you need to know about LinkedIn to build a thought leadership and sales lead platform

In this panel discussion, discover how to best navigate the new LinkedIn experience to create compelling posts, promote your content and generate sales leads.  You’ll get practical, tactical advice from Yumi Wilson, formerly with LinkedIn and now a professor at San Francisco State University and Matthew Royse, director of marketing communications at Forsythe Technology, who has trained more than 300 members of his salesforce to use the power of social selling.

You will learn:

  • How to optimize your profile so that you show up higher in search. Establish your expertise!
  • How to choose the right topics for LinkedIn. Create the most compelling openings, and organize your posts so they’re clear, concise, insightful!
  • Ways to promote your content to improve the number of views, comments and shares – and engage the right audiences
  • Why playing “six degrees of Kevin Bacon” is harder to play on LinkedIn’s free version and why your company should consider Sales Navigator
  • Insights into LinkedIn’s integrations, acquisitions and tools
  • Why your company should have LinkedIn Showcase pages
CEO
Ragan Communications, Inc.
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Formerly LinkedIn
Professor, San Francisco State University
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Director of Marketing Communications
Forsythe Technology
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4:30-5:30 p.m.

Disney Parks: Creating ‘endless magic’ with storytelling

In this special keynote, Thomas Smith, editorial content director at Disney Parks and founder of the award-winning Disney Parks Blog, will share a series of real world examples showing how purposeful storytelling generates remarkable results. He will lead a behind-the-scenes “tour” of the successful Disney Parks editorial content program and show how different content experiences are consistently used to entertain, educate and inform audiences across the globe.

You’ll also learn:

  • How emotional storytelling cuts through the clutter to reach audiences
  • The power of consistent, purposeful content experiences
  • Secrets for moving a newsroom-based content program into the future
  • Why moving forward and trying new things drive a content growth strategy
  • The Disney Parks approach to planning/distributing editorial content
Editorial Content Director
Disney Parks
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6-8 p.m.

Networking cocktail party, courtesy of Disney Parks

Wednesday, March 29

8:30-9:15 a.m.

Best practices to promote content to get the most out of your social investment

Social-media marketing has become pay-to-play. This shift makes it harder to get content in front of your audiences. That’s why your business needs to invest in promoting content. Increased functionality and sophisticated targeting allow us to reach niche audiences more efficiently. Whether your goal is to increase awareness and sentiment, lure more traffic or find new leads, your business must re-imagine its social media advertising strategies to meet its goals.

In this session, you’ll learn:

  • How to write a match-purpose-to-platform marketing plan for several social networks
  • How to ramp up your efficiency with tactics that target unique groups within users and communities
  • Strategies to promote content and direct-response ads to meet your quickly-changing marketing goals
  • Ways to measure content-marketing campaigns that resist the ROI yardstick
  • How to show results that sway business decisions to your C-suite

Director of Enterprise Data Stategy
AARP
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9:30-10:15 a.m.

How to get an audience unfamiliar with you to explore your universe on Snapchat

Sometimes it’s challenging to communicate the wonders of space exploration. When NASA decided to share stories on Snapchat, the agency saw a way to make the complicated simple. From a day in the life on the International Space Station, to showcasing a rocket launch, NASA has opened up space exploration to a new audience and compressed its news into snaps. NASA Social Media Manager John Yembrick will take you behind the scenes to show you how the agency embraced Snapchat, creating short-term stories that made a deep and lasting impression on large audiences, many of whose members undoubtedly were new to NASA.

 In this session, you’ll learn how to:

  • Showcase live events on Snapchat
  • Engage Snapchat users who may not be familiar with your content
  • Make the complicated simple to reach a less-technical audience
  • Reduce a big, complex story into smaller segments
  • Use compelling images to enhance storytelling
  • Use Snapchat as a call to action
  • Enable a scattered team to become Snapchat collaborators
  • Transform a communications organization to think differently about how they do their jobs and integrate new tools
Social Media Manager
NASA
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10:30-11:15 a.m.

Lessons from Coca-Cola’s brand journalism journey

For The Coca-Cola Company, brand journalism is the key to building meaningful relationships with stakeholders including employees, partners, fans and critics alike. In this session, Natalie Johnson, global senior manager for digital communications & social media at The Coca-Cola Company, will discuss the positive impact their digital magazine Coca-Cola Journey has had on the business and how brand journalism has proven to be a success.

You’ll hear about:

  • Making and breaking news on a digital platform and seeing the organic reach it offers
  • Generating content around key passion points for the company and its brands
  • The importance of having a medium that allows you to dispel fact from fiction
  • How successful content is measured at The Coca-Cola Company
Global Senior Manager, Digital & Social Media Communications
The Coca-Cola Company
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11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Closing keynote:
Can you really have “too many social channels”? Out-of-this-world social media with NASA

You know what they say: It’s all about content. NASA does not have a big budget for social media and yet its highly diversified portfolio—over 500 social accounts on 14 platforms—elevates mankind from mere observer to participant in space exploration by connecting Earth dwellers with astronauts via online Q&As, live events called NASA Socials and giving followers the virtual experience of a spacewalk via spectacular video footage of our planet from outside the International Space Station. In its quest to provoke that “aha!” moment among those for whom space is too distant a concept, NASA explores new ways social media is woven into our lives and stations itself at the center of that universe.

Hear from and talk with NASA’s social media manager, John Yembrick, who has championed social media with­in NASA and has a mission “to bring space down to Earth” for everyone. You will learn NASA’s best practices in using social media to build a strong community, rally public support, improve public perception, and gather input to influence decision making.

In this session you will learn how to:

  • Package content to inspire and engage an audience
  • Tackle new platforms and reach new audiences
  • Take online experience offline, and give followers an in-person experience
  • Engage with influencers and get user-generated content to tell your story
  • Transform into a digital organization that makes employees think differently about their jobs
  • Organize and manage 500+ social media account users in your organization
Social Media Manager
NASA
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