CMX Summit is October 1-3, 2018 in Portland, Oregon, and we’re expecting 400 incredible community builders, like yourself. We’re so excited for our 1/2 day workshop and 2 full days of conference fun.

You’ll find some CMX Summit staples like unique and interesting thought leaders combined with super tactical sessions. We’ll feed you breakfast and lunch each day, and host a networking party and an afterparty. And we’ll always have badge decorating and standing ovations as speaker hop on stage.

What’s new at CMX Summit?

Portland, Oregon by Ian Sane
Downtown Portland photo by Ian Sane


Did you hear we moved to Portland, Oregon this year?! In our quest to find a home for CMX Summit, we’ve chosen The Nines Hotel.

Finding the perfect place for a conference is a bit like Goldilocks. We had fun in Los Angeles last year, but the venue wasn’t quite the right fit.

What we really like about the Nines:

It’s a hotel too. This means, if you stay at the Nines — get that sweet hotel deal — you’ll just have to go downstairs each morning. Or if you need a small break outside our Introvert Lounge, you’ll be able to go to your hotel room easily.

It’s in beautiful downtown Portland with lots of shopping, food, and other walkable features. The Portland waterfront is four blocks away!

It’s a unique venue. The Nines was once a Meier & Frank department store. In fact, yours truly went back-to-school shopping there at least once.

It’s right by Portland’s Max light rail. For those coming from the airport, you can easily take public transportation. (Hint: this is a big money saver!) Or if you want to visit other parts of Portland or need the extra accessibility public transport provides, it’s right there.

Programming changes

Over the years, we’ve tried lots of different types and cadences of programming at Summit. We started off with a single stage, and we’ve expanded into two tracks. We’ve done lightning talks and a full day of workshops. We’re always listening to your feedback on what you need from Summit.

What does the overall schedule look like and why?

Monday, October 1st — Day 1

This is our half-day workshop with our CEO David Spinks. He’ll be teaching you all about the Fundamentals of Community Strategy. This has been a wildly popular and successful workshop with lots of hands on time to get your questions answered from the man himself, but also other community professionals working on similar challenges.

If you have taken this workshop at Summit 2017, it will be very similar with some updates and refreshes.

Our workshop is limited to 70 seats. Don’t miss out on securing your spot.

Tuesday, October 2nd — Day 2 — First full conference day!

A lot of you have asked for workshops over the years. However, we’ve found extremely mixed results in how those workshops performed. Last year, we accidentally discovered a balance. You all loved a session from Michael Margolis — which was a keynote with an interactive component.

This means, you got all the goodies from Michael’s keynote AND you got the benefit of being able to connect with your conference seat neighbor.

All of our talks on Tuesday feature longer sessions with everyone in the same room. These sessions not only dive deep into a topic relevant to you, but also provide an extra element.

You don’t want to miss extraordinary folks like creativity expert Denise Jacobs, community favorite Hawk, or long-time industry leader Richard Millington.

Wednesday, October 3rd — Day 3 — Second conference day

As community evolves, we’re getting more specialized. It’s important for us to be able to dive into the weeds of what you’re doing and the particular trends, innovations, and ongoing challenges.

On Wednesday — except for an opening and closing keynote — we’ll be running two stages all day with a variety of speakers getting at the heart of what you do. It’s time to get tactical. It’s time to get real. It’s time to get niche.

For me, being able to showcase great practitioners — who are at the forefront of their work — and can share their case studies, struggles, and solutions is the heart of what we’re doing. You’ll find a bit of everything from perennial needs like Health Metrics to hot trends like the explosion of Blockchain and community.

We’ve also heard you loud-and-clear that you wanted to change rooms between talks. For “back-to-back” talks, we’ll give you five minutes of travel time to move between rooms and get yourself resituated as needed.

Shout-out to our emcees, David Spinks and Ronell Smith, who will keep these stages rolling.

For those that don’t know Ronell, he is a digital content strategist helping brands do amazing things with content, including grow their audience, increase qualified web traffic to their websites, and outwit the competition. He’s deeply invested in brands with communities, and I’ve had the pleasure of working with him as he wrangled a UGC blog and curated events.

Birds of a feather tables

Networking and time with fellow attendees in a thoughtful manner is a frequent request. Seriously, you all cannot get enough of each other. Which we love!

This year, we’ll be organizing seven birds of a feather table around general topics with attendees assisting in topic facilitation. Each table will be labeled, and you can choose to sit at one, if you’d like. More details coming soon.

Meet this year’s sponsors

Without our sponsors, we couldn’t do Summit. In addition to bringing their wares and excitement, each sponsor booth will have an interactive element for your enjoyment. Last year, we had some put-put games, brain dates, and a headshot photo booth.

Don’t miss out on connecting with Discourse, Salesforce, Bevy, Higher Logic, ForumBee, and Picatic.

Do you really want to attend CMX Summit, but need some assistance?

Convince your boss

Sometimes, you need an extra boost to make your case to Summit. We’ve got your back! Check out our Convince Your Boss template, and fill in all the goodies you need in order to present your case.

Volunteer with us!

Can’t afford both travel and your ticket? We need Summit volunteers. As a volunteer, you will get a free ticket to Summit. Volunteers must pay for their own travel, lodging, and other incidentals. Depending on role, our volunteers work roughly half the conference, so you will have time to attend sessions too. Apply here.

It’s agenda preview time!

Because we *know* how important an agenda is to you and making your case to attend CMX Summit, we’ve released what we’ve tripled confirmed so far.

Sessions are still in motion. Any TBA slots are being confirmed on a rolling basis, and I will update the website as soon as I get them. (They make me do a happy dance too!)

Tuesday (October 2nd)

Denise JacobsDenise Jacobs
Founder + Chief Creativity Evangelist at The Creative Dose

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.

The Creativity (R)Evolution
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.

Sarah HawkHawk
Community and Product at Discourse

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.

Making Easy Work of a Career in Community
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.

Richard MillingtonRichard Millington
Founder at FeverBee

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.

Escape the Engagement Trap and Multiply the Value of Your Community
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.

Wednesday (October 3rd)

David SpinksDavid 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.

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

Ryan PaughRyan Paugh
Founder & COO at The Community Company

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.

Community Building for Grown-ups
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.

Savannah PetersonSavannah Peterson
Founder & Chief Unicorn at Savvy Millennial

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.

FOMO for Good: Building Blockchain Communities
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.

Tiffany YuTiffany Yu
CEO & Founder at Diversability

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.

Self-Care Isn’t Selfish: Strategies for Bringing Your Best Self to Your Community
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%.

Anika AnandAnika Anand
Storytelling Director at WhereBy.Us

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.

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

Rajiv PatelRajiv Patel
Partner Community Manager at Salesforce

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.

Provide a Human Touch in Your Online Community
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.

Ben LeongBen Leong
Forum Manager at Envato

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.

Health Measurements That Actively Help You Improve Your Community
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.

Terri LomaxTerri Lomax
Customer Success Manager at Asana

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.

Save the Drama for Yo’ Mama: 5 Strategies for Resolving Team and Community Conflicts Tactfully
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.

Anuj AdhiyaAnuj Adhiya
Director of Engagement & Analytics at GrowthHackers

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.

Community Retention: How to Science the Heck out of It
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.

Eryn PetersEryn Peters
Director of Operations at Toptal

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.


Are you ready for CMX Summit?

Buy your ticket today!

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We cannot wait to see you in Portland this fall!

erica mcgillivray

Erica McGillivray is the Director of Product Strategy and Community Experience at CMX Summit. She's a published author, gardening enthusiast, and loves tea, cats, and books. Erica lives in Seattle wit...

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