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Jeff Jarvis

The secret is out – Austin, Texas, is a very cool city and the unique culture of this hip American town is a fitting locale for the 2016 Key Executives Mega-Conference.  Media professionals who are intent on continuing the transformation will take inspiration not just from the radically cool program but from the local vibe of creativity found all over Austin.  Registration for this pace-setting gathering is now open – click here to register as an attendee.

The collaboration between the Local Media Association, Inland Press Association and the Southern Newspaper Publishers Association is driving the "awesomeness" of this event.  Expect two and a half days of inspirational programming, a superior lineup of speakers and highly relevant discussion about others' journey into transforming their business models to be less dependent on traditional advertising. This is definitely the place to help set strategies and goals for 2016 and beyond.

"What's exciting about this conference is that we'll be able to share a lot of innovative approaches in play by a number of different companies," said program coordinator Carol Hudler.  "No longer are all companies following the same path.  They are experimenting more.  There are good insights and ideas to be gleaned from a variety of different approaches."


Opening speaker Jeff Jarvis, CUNY professor and one of the preeminent voices on emerging forms of journalism and news delivery, will get things rolling with thought-provoking ideas about the possibilities for publishers.  "News organizations are not content factories," says Jarvis.  "We must re-conceive our businesses as services that help people in our communities answer their own needs." He'll share ideas about the possible future(s) of news, drawing on explorations he shares in his most recent book: "Geeks Bearing Gifts: Imaging New Futures for News."

Keynoter Mike Boland of BIA/Kelsey will explain how "LODE" (the Local On Demand Economy, or the "Uber-ification" of services) redefines local business and how that can help local media.

"LODE is dominating tech headlines and VC funding, not to mention our own coverage," reports Boland.  "But what does it mean for existing local media companies and to BIA/Kelsey's decades-long sphere of local influence?  It's a key question considering that LODE could displace local marketing to some degree." He sees opportunities for local media companies and will share intelligence in Austin.


Advance's Strategy: Randy Siegel, president of Advance Local, and Pam Siddall, president of Advance Central Services, will share the key lessons learned in the past four years from Advance Local's bold digital-first, reduced print frequency approach to its local news operations.

New Business Model Spotlight: Tim Griggs, publisher of Texas Tribune, will discuss how the Tribune, in just five years, has gained a reputation as a national model for non-profit news.  Using a diversified revenue portfolio that funds the work of a growing and respected newsroom, there are lessons for non-profit operations here.

Innovation Unlocks New Opportunities: Julie Austin of Creative Innovation Group will discuss the wisdom of integrating innovative thinking in your business and your personal life, and will share practical approaches to achieve this.


This award will honor the media operation that has demonstrated success in navigating the transformation of the media industry, specifically in terms of digital transformation, audience development, diversifying revenue and applying innovative sales and marketing approaches.  Download an entry form (deadline is Jan. 7)


Reserve your preferred space early!  Download information and register

Conference program view all

In making your travel plans for the 2016 Key Executives Mega-Conference, you'll want to be here in time for the Monday morning bonus session: "Driving Digital Sales."

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Innovation Award view all

Be recognized at the Mega-Conference for your innovative approaches! The deadline for entries is Jan. 7, and there's no contest entry fee.

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Sponsorship and exhibit opportunities view all

Registration has begun for exhibit space and sponsorship opportunities at the 2016 Mega-Conference. Register early to lock in your preferred space.

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View a list of Mega-Conference sponsors and exhibitors as of today.

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