CMWorld: How CMI Taught Our 10-Year-Old Event Some New Tricks

What does it take to deliver a stellar event experience on a virtual platform? Get a preview of the innovations the CMWorld staff is most excited to debut this year.

When the Content Marketing World team made the decision to transform our annual live event into an online experience, we knew we’d be putting our reputation for excellence on the line.

Could we deliver cutting-edge keynotes and breakouts, stellar networking opportunities, unique sponsor engagements, and the close sense of community our attendees expect? And could we package all those benefits into a video-based event that they’d watch – and pay for?

What’s new at CMWorld 2020

There have always been many things happening all at once at the in-person Content Marketing World events. We knew we’d need to simplify the concurrent tracks and streamline some signature features that wouldn’t translate well to the virtual world. We also sharpened our focus on the topics, techniques, and know-how that content marketers need most right now.

But we also found ways to expand our offerings so more marketers can attend from more places around the globe and come away with engaging, effective, and actionable techniques.

You’ll have to attend in October to see the full experience. In the meantime, I and others on the CMI team are sharing a few highlights of how we’re making CMWorld 2020 a one-of-a-kind virtual experience worthy of a 10th event celebration (and your time). Click on the video below to hear team members share their own words or browse the highlights below.

 

Engage at your convenience

We’re shortening Content Marketing World to three days, plus we’ll have workshops on Monday and industry forums on Friday (available to attendees who have registered for All-Access or Plus passes). Why? Because it will put less strain on attendees’ attention spans, energy levels, and work schedules. Everything is available on demand, so you can catch some sessions live, take a break whenever you’d like, then come back for more content when it’s convenient.

However, we’re also extending the event into November and December, with weekly Twitter chats with key speakers, webinars covering critical topics, and exclusive website content that will launch after the main event. We’ve planned two additional “digital days” – one in November focused on visual storytelling and one in December featuring some of the most innovative and forward-looking content marketers in the business.

As JK Kalinowski says in his video, “This year may have thrown us a massive curveball.” But we’re ready to hit this one out of the park.

Satisfy your craving for community

We’re all feeling the loss of not being able to meet and mingle with our community members in person this year. But we’ve organized some fun new networking breaks during the event, as well as “birds of a feather” Zoom rooms for industry-specific and discipline-specific meetups. I want to make sure that we are a resource where people can grow, communicate, commiserate, and collaborate.

As always, if you’re looking to connect with someone on the CMWorld staff, you’ll find us on Twitter (don’t forget to use the #CMWorld hashtag to get our attention) and in our Slack group throughout the event. Yet, Laura Kozak and the operations team have also been hard at work building up our CMI Help Desk Zoom Room. It’s the best place to get answers to your questions about the event, the virtual platform, and Content Marketing Institute in general. But we’d also love for you to stop by just to say hello, too.

Land valuable tech partners without clogging the landfills

It’s true, we do love taking home a bit of swag each year from CMWorld, be it a DivvyHQ t-shirt, a stuffed animal from Skyword, or some cool socks from Contently. And though we can’t serve up fresh coffee like NewsCred does in the exhibit hall each year, we can offer a unique opportunity to connect with potential technology partners at a time when many of us need their help most.

We’re putting together a questionnaire to help attendees maximize their time when visiting the CMWorld Solutions Hub. Your answers will enable us to deliver a personalized list of three to five top solutions providers that will be most relevant to your specific needs. While you can still branch out and explore all our partners’ offerings, the ability to navigate them more efficiently will make it easier to arrange one-on-one meetings, catch innovative demos, and schedule follow-up conversations after the show.

In addition, if you’re feeling overwhelmed with outstanding goals to reach in fourth quarter 2020 and into 2021, then you’ll love the Tech Lightning Round that Peter Loibl and the sales team have developed. Though Peter admits the idea was inspired by Shark Tank, he wants visitors to “picture it without the condescending judges and investors, and as more of a great way for partners to showcase their technologies.”

Get expert insights from world-class speakers

Ultimately, CMWorld attendees know great events are only as good as the content, education, and ideas they deliver. In his video, CMI’s chief strategy advisor Robert Rose points out a few of the keynote speakers he’s most excited to bring to our virtual stage. They include Melanie Deziel who will be talking to us about finding great storytelling ideas, Marcus Collins who will be talking about bringing culture into our content, and MJ DePalma from Microsoft who will be sharing some lessons on multicultural content marketing.

Stephanie Stahl, CMI general manager, heads up our programming each year. In her video, she reveals some of the things she looks for when attracting and recruiting world-class speakers – including our headliners who never fail to inform, inspire, and entertain our attendees. “We look for speakers who can help our audience explore ideas outside of their day-to-day priorities, help them think, help them laugh, and help them grow,” she says.

See firsthand what other surprises we have in store

We hope you can join us this year at Content Marketing World 2020. We want you, our community, to be with us on this journey. Code CCO100 saves $100 when you register for Content Marketing World today.

Want to share your thoughts on this article or suggest additional ideas? Email us at [email protected].


Author: Cathy McPhillips

Cathy is the vice president of marketing at the Content Marketing Institute, leading marketing efforts for CMI, Content Marketing World, ContentTECH Summit, CMI University, CCO magazine, and other CMI properties. She works hard to get you to CMI events - online and off - and gets extra excited for opportunities to meet #CMWorld community members in person! Cathy is also a board member for The Orange Effect Foundation. You can follow her on Twitter @cmcphillips.


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