The National Agri-Marketing Association (NAMA) concluded a wildly successful conference on Friday, April 23, 2010.
Boasting the highest attendance numbers in a decade, the mood at the conference was decidedly upbeat.
“The economy is looking better compared to last year, and people’s attitudes are very positive,” shared Jenny Pickett, NAMA Executive Vice President/CEO. “And since Kansas City is so centrally located, it was easier for more people to attend.”
Another important ingredient in the conference’s success was the stellar program packed with well-known speakers.
David Meerman Scott got the conference underway with “The New Rules of Marketing and PR.” His witty and fast-paced presentation challenged conference goers to “think differently” and earn the attention of interested markets. Scott emphasized that posting videos, writing blogs and being active in social media channels is essentially free. He shared real world examples of how businesses are becoming shrewd users of these new tools to gain more awareness and better ROIs.
Attendees were regaled with the folksy energy and wisdom of Andy Andrews during the second general session. Andrews is a spellbinding storyteller and kept the crowd engaged with his stories, anecdotes and observations. He peppered his conversation with golden rule tips to help everyone in the audience, regardless of their profession, become more successful.
Paul Mobley closed the conference with photographs and candid vignettes of life on the American farm. Mobley traveled over 100,000 miles through 37 states to complete his book, American Farmer: The Heart of Our Country. He complimented farmers and ranchers, saying “you rise every day with a love of the land and an integrity of spirit.”
This year’s conference also featured breakout sessions on social media, branding, trade show marketing, public relations and more. In addition, 2010 NAMA Agribusiness Leader of the Year, Dave Seehusen, and Marketer of the Year, Stephanie Liska, received their distinguished awards during the conference.
Best of NAMA awards were distributed the evening before the conference began. Best of Show Advertising went to Sullivan, Higdon Sink for their work for the Midwest Dairy Association. Best of Show Public Relations went to Dairy Management, Inc. and agency Weber Shandwick.
NAMA conference planning committee members look forward to more well attended conferences in the future, as they plan to host in Kansas City for the next three years.
“The Connection Point was livelier than ever this year and there were more ways for people to get involved and network,” said Pickett. “We hope to expand on the success of 2010 and look forward to more great conferences in the future.”