Communities change the world. Over 3 days, CMX Summit seeks to expand discussions, techniques, and tactics applied to community building for businesses and support communities and their builders (you!) at scale. You’ll gain insights from the best in the industry and make lifelong friends.

Not entirely sure about attending Summit? Check out this free, full session from storyteller Michael Margolis from last year’s conference:


Tuesday, October 2

  • Meals
    8:00 am — 9:00 am

    Breakfast and Registration

  • Sun Room
    9:00 am — 9:20 am

    David Spinks Welcome to CMX Summit 2018
    David Spinks

    David is the Founder and CEO of CMX, the premier membership for community professionals. CMX's mission is to help community professionals thrive. The CMX team has trained hundreds of companies in community strategy, including teams at Facebook, Google, and Salesforce. Today, thousands of community professionals come to CMX every day to learn, connect, and grow.

  • Sun Room
    9:20 am — 10:20 am

    Denise Jacobs The Creativity (R)Evolution
    Denise Jacobs

    When does one equal far more than one? Join the (R)Evolution to discover how to cultivate your creative spark and that of others to set you, your team, and your company on the path to betterness.

    Denise is a Speaker + Author + Creativity Evangelist who speaks at conferences and consults with companies worldwide. As the Founder + CEO of The Creative Dose, she teaches techniques that unlock creativity to help people become engaged contributors, synergistic collaborators, and authentic leaders. Denise is the author of the book Banish Your Inner Critic.

  • Meals
    10:20 am — 10:50 am

    AM Break

  • Sun Room
    10:50 am — 11:30 am

    Kara Cronin Intimacy at Scale: Building Community with Brand Ambassadors
    Kara Cronin

    Looking to grow your company and build loyalty at the same time? Give brand ambassadors a seat at the table. Join Kara to learn how fostering connections among strangers with one thing in common — love for your brand — can help you build products, facilitate meaningful relationships, and activate your audience.

    Before starting her career at theSkimm, Kara was a Skimm'bassador herself, gaining first-hand experience into the power of its community. She later became a full-time employee as Community Manager for the program, and now leads campaigns, programming and communications for the community of 30k highly-engaged female millennials that accounts for over 20% of theSkimm’s audience growth.

  • Sun Room
    11:30 am — 12:05 pm

    Sarah Hawk Making Easy Work of a Career in Community
    Sarah Hawk

    Organizations which truly prioritize community are rare, which means our roles are often the first cut when things get tight. Building a strong network and a great reputation can help ensure that you’re always employed. Hawk has built a successful and fulfilling career without a single job interview. Find out how she did it.

    Hawk (first name Sarah, but keep that on the down-low) is an expert in the UX of community platforms and is currently on the team that builds Discourse. Originally a software developer, she has spent the last decade in community roles, most recently HOC at FeverBee, and works remotely from her home in New Zealand. When away from the screen, Hawk is a gym instructor, a wine drinker, and a mother of twins.

  • Meals
    12:05 pm — 1:35 pm


  • Sun Room
    1:35 pm — 2:50 pm

    Richard Millington Escape the Engagement Trap and Multiply the Value of Your Community
    Richard Millington

    Do you feel pressured to always up your engagement metrics? Richard will teach you why you shouldn't waste your career or your community’s potential chasing engagement. He'll refocus your work to set expectations, give value to your members, and hone member behavior.

    Richard is the founder of FeverBee and the author of Buzzing Communities. Over the past 14 years, Richard has helped to develop over 250+ successful communities, including those for Facebook, Google, The World Bank, Oracle, Amazon, Autodesk, Lego, The United Nations, Novartis, and many more.

  • Meals
    2:50 pm — 3:20 pm

    PM Break

  • Sun Room
    3:20 pm — 4:00 pm


  • Party
    4:00 pm — 5:30 pm

    Tuesday Night Networking Party

    Our networking party is your time to meet fellow attendees, visit with sponsors, and get your questions answered from speakers. We're providing light appetizers, beer and wine, and non-alcoholic beverages.

  • Party
    7:00 pm — 9:00 pm

    Tuesday Night Pro-Only Gathering

    More details coming soon on this Pro-only gathering, and yes, exclusive to CMX Pro members only! Location TBA.

Wednesday, October 3

  • Meals
    8:30 am — 9:30 am


  • Sun Room
    9:00 am — 9:30 am

    TBA Activity

  • Sun Room
    9:30 am — 10:10 am

    David Spinks The State of Community
    David Spinks

    The community industry continues to grow and evolve. CMX CEO David Spinks will review the key trends happening in the community industry today.

    David is the Founder and CEO of CMX, the premier membership for community professionals. CMX's mission is to help community professionals thrive. The CMX team has trained hundreds of companies in community strategy, including teams at Facebook, Google, and Salesforce. Today, thousands of community professionals come to CMX every day to learn, connect, and grow.

  • Sun Room
    10:10 am — 10:45 am

    Ryan Paugh Community Building for Grown-ups
    Ryan Paugh

    Stop building squishy communities. There's a gold rush coming for those who are ready to grow up and treat their profession like it's real business. Paugh will show you the systems, processes, and mindset shifts he and his team made to create a multi-million dollar community business.

    Called “a cult legend in the online-community building world” by Mashable, Ryan has been at the forefront of building highly curated, technology-enabled communities for over a decade. He's the author of Superconnector: Stop Networking and Start Building Business Relationships that Matter and Founder of The Community Company.

  • Meals
    10:45 am — 11:15 am

    AM Break

  • Sun Room
    11:15 am — 11:40 am

    Savannah Peterson FOMO for Good: Building Blockchain Communities
    Savannah Peterson

    Join Savannah to learn about blockchain beyond the crypto buzz. We'll explore what this community powered paradigm shift means for you, and illustrate the power of FOMO through a case study on crowdfunding the humanoid robot Sophia's brain.

    Savannah is a Forbes 30 Under 30 in Consumer Technology and the Founder of Savvy Millennial. She is an international public speaker, vlogger, and community builder. A connector of needs at solutions, Savannah's current projects range from Blockchain to books. She makes teaching cameos at Stanford, NYU, and UCLA, and is featured on NBC, BBC, WSJ, CNBC, CNET, The Verge, and more.

  • Rainbow Room
    11:15 am — 11:40 am

    Jessica Wawoe What We Can Learn from Indigenous Tribes for Our Communities
    Jessica Wawoe

    Indigenous tribes have organized themselves into often thriving groups with specific rites, rituals, and traditions. Jessica focuses on gathering knowledge from tribes all over the world and presenting what can be applied in other areas, such as operations and community building. She will share what makes a strong tribe, how to lead and assign roles, and suggested rituals to adopt in your community.

    Born from two cultures, Jessica made a career out of helping international teams to collaborate better. After almost two decades with global brands, she is applying her experience and curiosity towards making tribal knowledge applicable to a broader audience. Recently, Jessica moved back to The Netherlands where she balances family, work, and travel with her love of yoga and outdoor sports.

  • Groups
    11:40 am — 11:45 am

    Travel Time: move rooms, if you need!

  • Sun Room
    11:45 am — 12:05 pm

    Tiffany Yu Self-Care Isn't Selfish: Strategies for Bringing Your Best Self to Your Community
    Tiffany Yu

    You're a rock for everyone in your community, but how do you prevent community manager burnout? Tiffany, who runs a community for the disabled (including chronic illness and mental health), will walk you through strategies to take care of yourself and make sure you can give your community 100%.

    Tiffany is the CEO of Diversability, an award-winning social enterprise to rebrand disability through community. Previously, she ran community for a co-living startup and founded Bloomberg's affinity group for employees with disabilities and allies. Named one of 100 visionary leaders by Real Leaders Magazine, Tiffany has been featured in Marie Claire, the Guardian, and Forbes.

  • Rainbow Room
    11:45 am — 12:05 pm

    Anika Anand Community Is Our Product: Why We're Betting on User Engagement, Not User Reach, to Build a Sustainable Business
    Anika Anand

    Trust in traditional news media is at an all-time low, and many of our local news sources are steadily shrinking due to declining revenue. That's why journalists today can't afford not to put community at the center of their editorial and business strategies. We'll talk about the specific ways media companies are doing this across the industry and at WhereBy.Us – a media company serving communities of curious locals through email newsletters and community experiences that create impact, value, and long-term relationships.

    Anika is storytelling director of WhereBy.Us, a digital media startup and parent company of The Evergrey, which she cofounded in 2016. She's also worked as the engagement editor for The Seattle Times Education Lab and the product director for Chalkbeat. She was recently named one of Seattle's 50 most influential women and is an alum of The Cohort, a group of digital media lady leaders.

  • Meals
    12:05 pm — 1:35 pm


  • Sun Room
    1:35 pm — 2:00 pm


  • Rainbow Room
    1:35 pm — 2:00 pm

    Rajiv Patel Provide a Human Touch in Your Online Community
    Rajiv Patel

    How do you bridge the gap between your community members’ online and in-person presence? How do you make your users feel like they’re interacting with a human and not a robot? Join Rajiv to hear tips and tricks on how to make a “real” impact in your community.

    Rajiv is the Manager of the Salesforce Partner Community. In April 2014, he helped launch the first-ever partner community at Salesforce, with a focus on the highest levels of engagement and success. In four years, Rajiv's team has been able to grow the partner community site from 700 users to 80K+ worldwide users. He lives in the Bay Area of California and loves to practice yoga in his free time.

  • Groups
    2:00 pm — 2:05 pm

    Travel Time: move rooms, if you need!

  • Sun Room
    2:05 pm — 2:25 pm

    Ben Leong Health Measurements That Actively Help You Improve Your Community
    Ben Leong

    How can you tell if your community is healthy? What should you measure, and what can you actually do with that data once you have it? Learn how good health metrics identify where problems occur and help community managers prioritize where to put their resources to best effect.

    Ben is fascinated by the ways long-term online communities evolve and thrive. As Envato's Forum Manager, he works with a globally distributed team and a community of over 2 million customers. With almost two decades of online community experience, Ben is currently focused on developing environments that provide members with a strong sense of community, while also delivering business outcomes.

  • Rainbow Room
    2:05 pm — 2:25 pm


  • Groups
    2:25 pm — 2:30 pm

    Travel Time: move rooms, if you need!

  • Sun Room
    2:30 pm — 2:50 am


  • Rainbow Room
    2:30 pm — 2:50 pm

    Terri Lomax Save the Drama for Yo' Mama: 5 Strategies for Resolving Team and Community Conflicts Tactfully
    Terri Lomax

    While conflicts and disagreements are an unavoidable part of life, they can grow fast and spread like wildfire if left unattended or handled carelessly in an online community. Terri has put out many conflict fires. She will share her go-to strategies for diffusing conflict with relatable case studies and empower you to establish expectations early on to minimize friction in the long run.

    Terri is a blogger, speaker, and brand strategist, who empowers women who struggle with tech to leverage social media and personal branding to grow their audience and impact. She also manages a flourishing online community of more than 4,000 ambitious women on a mission, via the Mocha Girls Pit Stop blog, which is where women of color refuel on motivation and ignite their lives.

  • Meals
    2:50 pm — 3:20 pm

    PM Break

  • Sun Room
    3:20 pm — 3:45 pm

    Anuj Adhiya Community Retention: How to Science the Heck out of It
    Anuj Adhiya

    You’ve built your community, but keeping your members engaged is always an ongoing challenge. How do you craft a plan that will keep them coming back for more? Anuj will walk you through the three stages of member churn, identify strategies for helping them get through each stage, and you'll learn from tactics that communities (and popular apps) have used to improve retention.

    Anuj is the Director of Engagement and Analytics at GrowthHackers. He runs the community and is the data analyst on the growth team. Anuj's role has him running experiments all the time to understand what drives sustainable growth. Before GrowthHackers, he had no experience with growth or community. Anuj's last degree was in Chemistry and its principles have been surprisingly relevant to his role.

  • Rainbow Room
    3:20 pm — 3:45 pm

    Megan Berry TBA
    Megan Berry

    Megan Berry has focused her career around building communities and social products. She is currently VP Product at Octane AI, a chatbot platform for online stores. Previously, she was VP Product at RebelMouse. Before that, she led community and marketing at social influence startup Klout, after joining as their fourth employee. Megan graduated from Stanford Phi Beta Kappa.

  • Groups
    3:45 pm — 3:50 pm

    Travel Time: move rooms, if you need!

  • Sun Room
    3:50 pm — 4:10 pm


  • Rainbow Room
    3:50 pm — 4:10 pm

    Eryn Peters Big Data or Big Responsibility? How to Give, Not Take, with User Data
    Eryn Peters

    User data is a goldmine — but for whom? Most organizations measure the ROI of community for the organization itself, but are we overlooking its value to community members? What if we stopped thinking of user data as something to capitalize on, and let it teach us how to grow instead? What if by doing the best for our community, we do the best for the business?

    As Toptal’s Director of Operations, Eryn leads the global Toptal expert community in sharing thought leadership at conferences and technical events, as well as through professional mentorship and learning initiatives. Focusing on experiential, quantitative methods, Eryn brings cross-functional experience from time spent at Sony and Mercedes-Benz to best serve the communities she influences.

  • Groups
    4:10 pm — 4:20 pm

    Travel Time: move rooms, if you need!

  • Sun Room
    4:20 pm — 5:15 pm


  • Party
    7:00 pm — 10:00 pm

    Location TBA

    Unwind after two days of learning and immersing yourself in all things community. Solidify those friendships before you say goodbye. Make sure to bring your conference badge and your US ID or passport.

We'd love for you to join us!

Register Now


Fundamentals of Community Strategy Workshop with David Spinks

Monday, October 1, 2018 from 12:00-6:00pm
The Nines Hotel, 525 SW Morrison St, Portland, OR 97204

Join CMX Media’s CEO David Spinks, the afternoon before the conference kicks off, for our fundamentals workshop, which has been developed over 4 years and taught to over 600 organizations of all sizes around the world. Both new and experienced community professionals have taken this workshop to get clarity on their community strategy and bring industry best practices to building valuable, meaningful, and engaged communities.

David teaching a workshop at CMX Summit 2017
David teaches a workshop at CMX Summit 2017.

Many community professionals are self-taught. It’s easy to think you’re alone and feel like it’s up to you to invent the wheel. This comprehensive workshop will help you benefit from the collective knowledge of hundreds of the leading experts in the community industry. David will walk you through:

— applying the community canvas to map out your strategy
— defining the business value of your community and choosing the right metrics
— using the engagement cycle to fuel meaningful engagement

You’ll also have the opportunity to work together with other community professionals in small groups, and get personal feedback on your business’ challenges.

Everyone who attends this workshop will walk away with a set of tools they can bring back to their team and come back to time and time again. It’s also the perfect deep-dive foundation to bring with you into the next two days of inspiration and education at CMX Summit.

The workshop includes one afternoon snack break and a post-workshop, attendee-only mixer.

Activities around CMX Summit

Meet before CMX Summit

Get to know each other by joining our CMX Summit attendee-only Facebook Group or hopping on the #CMXSummit Twitter hashtag.

Tuesday Night Networking Party

Time TBA at the Nines Hotel

As day one of Summit closes, we’re bringing everyone together to enjoy time to get to know each other, get to chat with speakers, and get to visit our sponsors. We’ll have light hors d’oeuvres, beer and wine, and non-alcoholic beverages too.

Tuesday Evening CMX Pro-Only Party

Time and location TBA

Are you a CMX Pro member? We’re inviting our Pro members for a special CMX Summit party. The details are in the works, but for all Pro members attending this year’s conference, we’re planning something special.

Wednesday Night Afterparty

Time and location TBA

After two days of learning and immersing yourself in all things community, take a moment to relax, solidifying those connections with other attendees, and have a little fun. We’ll have plenty of conversation and drinks, both alcoholic and non-alcoholic available. Make sure to bring your conference badge and your US ID or passport. More details coming soon!



CMX Summit 2018 will be hosted at

The Nines Hotel
525 SW Morrison St
Portland, OR 97204


Our official CMX Summit hotel is at The Nines Hotel in downtown Portland. In addition to the nightly discount, CMX Summit attendees get complimentary premium Wi-Fi.

Group rate: $269 (plus tax) for king rooms and doubles
Cut-off date: Friday, September 7, 2018
Reservation linkThe Nines Hotel


Get a discount on your flight! We worked with both Alaska Airlines and Delta Airlines to save money on your flight to CMX Summit in Portland. If flying on Alaska, head to and use the code ECMZ428 for 7% off. If flying on Delta, go to and use the code NMRPS for 2-10%, depending on where you depart from and return to.

Ground Transportation

MAX Light Rail
Portland’s light rail system runs about every 15 minutes most of the day, every day. Service is less frequent in the early morning, mid-day and evening. Catch the MAX from Portland International Airport and pay only $2.50 for a 40-minute ride to The Nines Hotel. Exit at Pioneer Courthouse Square.

Driving and Parking
The Nines Hotel offers valet parking to guests on a daily/overnight basis with unlimited access throughout the day and night. The short term fee for valet parking is $17.00. The overnight fee for valet parking is $47.00, $55.00 for oversized vehicles, and $35.00 for hybrid vehicles.

Praise for CMX Summit

  • Ellen Leanse, Apple's First User Evangelist

    "I've been waiting 25 years for the conversations happening here at CMX Summit."

    Ellen Leanse, Apple's First User Evangelist
  • Tim Falls

    “A certain inexplicable magic seemed to be afoot in that room full of community-minded folks."

    Tim Falls
  • Malcolm Ribot, Founder of FTM Traveler

    "To be able to meet and share ideas, struggles, and successes with other community buiders was refreshing and life changing."

    Malcolm Ribot, Founder of FTM Traveler


Q: What date is the workshop? When’s the conference?
A: The workshop is Monday (October 1), and the conference is Tuesday and Wednesday (October 2-3). Times are still TBD on exact 2-day conference start and end, but plan on being there from 8am-5pm each day with evening events afterward.

Q: Besides the conference, what does my CMX Summit ticket include?
A: Your ticket includes not only access to the conference, but breakfast, lunch, and two snacks on both days. You’ll also get access to CMX Summit official parties, some way cool swag, and all the fun activities we have planned at the event.

Q: I want to send my entire team. Does CMX do group discounts?
A: Yes, we offer discounts for any group tickets purchased for 3 or more attendees. For groups 3-5, 6-10, or 10+, choose the group option in registration. If you’d like to bundle in workshops with your group tickets, please email us for the discount information.

Q: Can you advise me on how to convince my boss that CMX Summit is worth the investment?
A: Yes, you can download our convince your boss Google Doc template (also available for Word). And if you need customized help, reach out our team.

Q: Can I just go to the Workshop?
A: Yes, you can purchase a Workshop-only ticket at either Early Bird or GA ticket pricing. Supplies are extremely limited as only 80 people can attend.

Q: I’m a speaker and would like to pitch to CMX Summit; how can I do this?
A: Unfortunately, speaker pitches are closed for CMX Summit 2018. We will not be reopening them until spring 2019 for the following year’s show.

Q: Is CMX Summit held in an accessible venue?
A: The Nines Hotel, CMX Summit’s venue and preferred hotel, is fully ADA compliant. We aim to make sure everyone is safe and comfortable at Summit.

Summit is located on the sixth floor of the Nines. There are both elevators and stairs access options to take you from the venue entrance, hotel, and conference space. Summit’s seating is theater-style, and we’ll have two stage rooms; a general mingle area with tables for meals, sponsor booths, and registration; and a smaller room as an introvert zone. There will be two gender neutral restrooms.

Breakfast, lunch, and two snacks will be served at the venue. Our afterparty is the only event not at the Nines Hotel. We’re still TBD on location, but it will likely be a bar near the venue.

For conference printed materials, we will have a physical programming booklet and may have one-page handouts from speakers. We’re happy to get you digital copies beforehand. You’ll be able to download all our speakers’ decks in PDF form on our website day of show, and all talks will be recorded, which all attendees will get the videos about a month post-conference.

We have accessible sleeping rooms in our hotel block. There are rooms for the deaf, blind, and attendees in wheelchairs. When booking your hotel room, you can request specific aids or services needed for your stay. Experient staff will contact you to confirm your needs. Please be sure to reconfirm your requests with your hotel prior to arrival.

What To Expect

  • — Dietary requirement-compliant, healthy, nutritious food will be served throughout the day. Drinks (coffee, tea, water) will be available at all times.
  • — Wi-fi will be available.
  • — The lobby area is flat, while the theater is on an ADA compliant rake, with multiple areas for those who require mobility assistance.
  • — Anyone with mobility, hearing, or vision concerns can reserve seats.
  • — Our restrooms are gender neutral, multi-stall, and handicap accessible.
  • — Service animals are welcome.
  • — The networking party will be after the 1st conference day, in the conference space, and we will be providing alcoholic beverages as well as soft drinks and water.
  • — Our Code of Conduct is enforced, and our team is available throughout the entire event and parties to address any incidents, microaggressions, or ableisms.
  • — Our speakers have been advised to avoid using epilepsy-inducing videos and animations, however, we cannot fully guarantee compliance.

If you have accessibility requests, please make sure to contact us by Tuesday, September 4, 2018.

Q: I requested a special meal. How do I get my meal?
A: Meals are all served in one room. Vegetarian food is part of the main fare. (We order based on percentages.) But dairy-free, gluten-free, halal, kosher, vegan, and other special meals will be served near the other food, and the catering staff will ensure you get your meal.

Q: Do you provide student or non-profit discounts?
A: We do provide 20% off a full-priced General Admission tickets for CMX Summit. For GA ticket discount, email [email protected].

Q: I’d love to go to CMX Summit, but I truly cannot afford to. Does CMX help with this?
A: Yes, CMX offers Conference Diversity and Inclusion Scholarships. Learn more about these scholarships. Scholarship applications are open now through Friday, May 18, 2018 at 5pm PDT.

Q: Sadly, I can’t make it to CMX Summit this year. Do you refund tickets?
A: Full refunds on full-priced General Admission tickets will be given if tickets are canceled by Friday, August 31, 2018. You can alternatively transfer the GA ticket to a colleague or friend. Pre-Sale or Early Bird tickets cannot be refunded, and can only be transferred to another person. Any ticket transfers must be made by Friday, September 14, 2018. Latecomer tickets are ineligible for refunds or transfers. Please contact us for transfers and refunds.

Q: I’m international and need to order a visa in order to come to CMX Summit. Can you help with this?
A: Yes, we can write you a letter of recommendation for you to apply for a visa. Email [email protected] your name, business address, and ticket order number. Please check with your local government office for any visas waiting periods. If for some reason you cannot obtain a visa, we will refund your ticket.

Q: I can only attend one day of CMX Summit, do you offer single day tickets?
A: Yes. If you have an important obligation and can only attend one day — email [email protected] and we’ll get you a coupon code for a single day ticket.

Q: Does CMX Summit have a code of conduct or other policy for attendee behavior?
A: Yes, we have adopted a code of conduct for further inclusiveness for attending community professionals of all stripes. We expect all attendees, staff, sponsors, and anyone else at CMX Summit to abide by the code of conduct, and will enforce it as needed.

Q: Will CMX Summit be recorded? Can I record something?
A: Yes, it will be recorded by our team of professional a/v staff and the videos edited for your viewing pleasure. We ask that attendees do not record the sessions themselves.

Q: Can I buy videos from Summit 2017?
A: Yes, you can buy the CMX Summit 2017 Videos today!

Q: I’d love to get more information about CMX Summit. How can I do that?
A: You can sign up for our email list and be the first to know about tickets sales, agendas, and other CMX Summit previews.

Subscribe now

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