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March Madness is almost over, major league baseball starts next week, and the NFL draft is quickly approaching. Excited? You bet! But not for those reasons. I’m excited because Xperience 2015 is just a week away!

Once again 300 association leaders and staff from around the country and as far away as South Africa, will converge on St. Petersburg for YM’s annual customer conference.  They will be there to take advantage of in-depth training on the YM platform; gain insights on where our suite of member engagement products and services are headed; learn from their peers on new ways to successfully use the YM suite of products in their daily work; and hear from some of the top thought leaders in the association industry.

Xperience 2015 will also mark the first time our customers will have the opportunity to meet with YM since the acquisition of Job Target’s career center business unit and Digital Ignite. The growth of YM’s offerings are changing the landscape of what an integrated member engagement platform will mean in 2015 and beyond. The product roadmap we will be unveiling for our membership software, career center and learning management system technologies should send everyone home with much to look forward to.

There has been quite the discussion lately about what the top trends in technology are and their implications for associations? What will these trends mean from a member and staff expectations perspective? Our keynote speaker this year will be Reggie Henry, ASAE’s CIO. Mr. Henry will discuss and demonstrate some of the hottest technologies and related topics facing organizations today, including iBeacons, mobile, big data, and “the internet of things.”

This is such a fantastic opportunity to provide training and thought leadership to our customers, while meeting face-to-face with them to discuss the challenges they encounter in their day-to-day work. During the course of our time together we hope to discover ideas we can work on together to make their lives, and the lives of their members better.

Along with a packed schedule of learning and networking opportunities we will also be providing a healthy dose of fun. After all, it’s springtime in Florida!

This will mark my 10th customer conference, and it is always one of the highlights of my year. There is an unbelievable energy that comes from our conferences that make them can’t miss events. As an added bonus, I get the chance to catch up with friends I have made during my 15 years working with our association customers. And of course, I look forward to making new friends, too. If you’re making your way down to St. Pete, be sure to stop by and say hello. I’m looking forward to seeing you there.

In case you haven’t had a chance to yet, be sure and download your free copy of our latest publication, The Ultimate Guide to Association Event Management. You will get tips on how to host a conference that delivers an unforgettable experience for attendees, which keeps them coming back for more. This includes how to achieve the best possible mix of speakers, content, and activities at an attractive venue all within your budget. This guide will help you maximize attendee value, conference budget ROI, and long-term attendance growth.

And in closing, I invite you to register for YM’s next Thought Leadership Webinar to be held on April 22nd, titled Are You Ready for When Millennials Take Over? Authors Jamie Notter and Maddie Grant will share research, case studies and lessons learned from their newest book, “When Millennials Take Over: Preparing for the Ridiculously Optimistic Future of Business” that identify the four key capacities that must be developed inside organizations to successfully adapt to this future of business. It’s not about simply “dealing with Millennials”—it’s about working with them to design organizations that thrive in today’s environment and understand how to drive deep engagement with employees, customers, members and volunteers in a new way.