What You Can Expect from CMX Summit 2014, the World's Largest Gathering of Community Builders

Carrie Melissa Jones
January 22, 2015
February 21, 2024

We're less than 3 days from CMX Summit San Francisco, our biggest and best Summit yet.

All of us here on Team CMX are so excited to roll out the red carpet for you at the event next week, to introduce you to our wonderful and inspiring speakers, and - perhaps most importantly - to create a space where you can get to know one another.

We've announced the full agenda with amazing speakers from Burning Man, NASA, Product Hunt, Airbnb and more, but we wanted to take a moment to break down what you can actually expect from Thursday's event.

Things will be hectic, they'll be exciting, they'll be nonstop. You'll be tweeting up a storm if you so choose, every previous CMX Summit has trended on Twitter and we expect more of the same.

Who Will you Meet at CMX Summit?

One unique thing about CMX is the different kinds of people that show up.

A large portion of the attendees will be community professionals at all different levels of experience ranging from students just getting started to VP's of Community who have been through the grind. There's a ton of energy that comes out of gathering over 350 community builders in one room together.

Another large portion of the audience will be founders who are building community into their companies and looking to learn how other companies do it. Some are hiring, some are just looking to learn. Some are startup founders, some have already built successful mid-sized companies.

There's also always a healthy mix of unique professions like museum organizers, charity managers, politicians and anyone else interested in learning how to build communities. It's a truly unique mix with some fascinating people all in one room.

We're expecting a lot of past speakers from previous CMX events to be in attendance as well so make sure you catch up on all the old CMX talks here if this is your first Summit.

We'll get Started at 8:00am in the Morning


You do want to get there early. Speaking from personal experience, the sooner you can get there, the better. Yes, 8:00AM is early if you live in San Francisco. No one ever gets to work that early. But getting there on time will allow you to have coffee (we'll have all-day espresso, we know what you're really all about) and meet a few other community builders in a more relaxed environment, before the rush of the day begins and schedules fill up. So get there on time or early!

This is prime time to meet others, and meeting others means you'll get clues into how to do your job better.

Morning Sessions: Building Community and Crowdsourcing Platforms

We're going to get started with three well-known CEO's, all of whom have had hands-on experience building their communities from the ground up. We'll get the behind the scenes look at how Product Hunt has been so wildly successful, how comedy and crowdsourcing is helping BetaBrand change the way fashion companies produce products and how Jess Lee went from community member to the CEO who built a thriving community with millions of members.

9:00am - Jess Lee, CEO of Polyvore: 15 Tips and Tricks for Community Growth Hacking

9:40am - Chris Lindland, CEO, BetaBrand: Crowdsourcing and Comedy

10:10am - Ryan Hoover, CEO, Product Hunt: How to Launch a Thriving Community Driven Platform

10:40am - BREAK

At this point, you'll get about 35 minutes to continue meeting people. Circulate around the room, grab an espresso from our all-day espresso, charge your computer and say hi to others who are doing the same!


Structuring your Community Strategy and Metrics

These will be shorter, rapid fire talks by a series of true experts in developing a community strategy. They'll give you a clear breakdown of how they've structured their community strategy, including metrics and reporting then we'll finish up with a final Q&A with all three speakers, so bring your burning questions!

11:15am - Shira Levine, Director of Community, Yerdle (previously Zynga): Community Strategy for Consumers and Marketplaces

11:30am- Erica Kuhl, Director of Community, Salesforce.com: Structuring your B2B Community Strategy

11:45am- Marcus Graham, Director of Community and Education, Twitch: Community Strategy for Content Platforms

12:00pm - Q&A with all three speakers

12:15 - LUNCH

You'll have an hour and a half to meet people and grab your food. Enjoy!


Scaling Community and Evangelist Programs

In this session we'll hear from three speakers who have actually executed on building massive, scalable community programs with the help of ambassadors and volunteers. It's one of the most important goals for a community builder to be able to leverage your existing community to help your business grow. This is how it's done.

1:45pm - Andrew Hyde, Founder, Startup Weekend: Building a Global, Volunteer-Driven Event Community

2:15pm - Jeanne Holme, Evangelist, NASA and Data.gov: How NASA Built a Massive, Global Evangelist Program

2:45pm - Douglas Atkin, VP of Community, Airbnb: Mobilizing a Community to Take Action


Again, get up and stretch, take a walk around the room, and meet some new people. Or say hi to friends! Sitting all day can be really exhausting, so it's important to get up and move around.

Community Psychology and Theory

We all know Burning Man and the incredibly strong community that they've built around art, music and a unique perspective on life. We'll hear from Burning Man's Jenn Sander then finish off with social architecture expert, Amy Jo Kim, one of the most well known and respected authors and speakers in the community industry. Our final two talks will open up your mind and send you away feeling inspired to go forward and build your own thriving communities.

3:45pm - Jenn Sander, Global Initiatives, Burning Man: Giving up Control to your Community

4:15pm - Amy Jo Kim, Ph.D, Co-Founder, ShuffleBrain: The Cooperative Design Revolution

5:00pm - We'll close out with final remarks from David, and we'll head upstairs in the venue for our Happy Hour overlooking the bay.

We can't wait to see you all on Thursday! It's going to be an event you'll never forget.

Carrie Melissa Jones
January 22, 2015
February 21, 2024

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