Have you reserved your seat?
Meet the moment • Engage stakeholders
Build reputation • Shape strategy • Craft messaging
Join your peers during Ragan’s Communications Week on November 1-2 for a must-attend conference to help you refine and align your strategies with the future of communications, hone your business acumen to position yourself as a future leader and better understand the tools and technology that will get you there. Industry experts will teach you the skills needed to meet the next horizon of employee communications, social purpose and DE&I, leadership communications, technology and more.
This conference will feature real-world tips and tactics from leading communicators. Our speakers will share how they effectively measure and report to reflect the needs of emerging audiences, refine media relations strategies to build stronger relationships amid changing newsroom trends, integrate emerging tools and features on social media to earn more engagement with audiences, foster stronger agency-client relationships and more.
TECH • TALENT • MEDIA • REPUTATION • CRISIS • DEI • CULTURE
THE COMPANY YOU WILL KEEP
- How to boost the employee experience
- New storytelling techniques
- Best practices for data-informed communications
- Ways to capture the attention of the media and other stakeholders
- New and exciting possibilities in a hybrid/remote work environment
- Intranets and emails: the latest tactics for optimal internal communications
- To incorporate blockchain and NFTs to take your content to the next level
- The next generation of video content – what it looks like and how you’ll create it
- From talk to action: How you can help the industry materially progress on DE&I
- Crisis management in an age of unprecedented uncertainty
Top things you’ll learn at this conference:
Entertaining and educational: a story only truly sings when it’s both. This is true of any content, but when it comes to the branded variety, your calculus also must factor in channel, tone, uniqueness (vis a vis competitors) and finding the perfect balance of authentically representing your brand while focusing on what’s most valuable to the audience. During this keynote, a master storyteller will show you the most impactful ways to reach your audience.
Being an effective communicator starts with speaking to the needs of the business with authority and expertise. In this panel, we’ll share the best ways for you to get invited into the room where decisions are made. Hear real-world tips on applying your business acumen to develop communication plans that meet the needs of your various stakeholders. You’ll learn:
- Important business terms that can ascribe value to your communications efforts
- Tips for interpreting annual reports and financial statements
- Strategies for tying communication plans to the bottom lines that leadership values most
- Ways to negotiate more budget for your communications efforts and your team
If it seems as though chatter about blockchain and the metaverse are ubiquitous, that’s because they are. These emerging technologies are already changing how brands interact with consumers – with everything from cultivating transparency and community building through virtual meeting spaces to data collection. By and large, communicators are only starting to understand how these emerging technologies can impact the work we do. That will change with this session where you’ll learn:
- Ways that blockchain technology can be deployed as a tool for communicating business transparency, combating fake news and building trust
- Strategies for low-cost, easily accessible metaverse meetings that can unite disparate workforces and enhance the employee experience
At a time of ceaseless national, global and brand crises, a chorus of voices on social media now have unprecedented power to solidify, damage or repair corporate reputation. Thankfully, your responses do, too. In this session, our experts explore the nature of how crises have changed over the past year, look at the sources that start and amplify them and share their strategies for responding to an incident with the appropriate speed, message and action. You’ll learn:
- Recent and future crises that are emerging across industries — and how communicators can safeguard their organizations to lessen the inevitable blow
- How to bring strategy, not just the story by activating your crisis plan and org chart to ensure all internal stakeholders are ready to do their part
- Strategies for crafting holding statements that are situationally specific and appropriate with terms pre-vetted by legal counsel
- Media monitoring tactics that can help you determine when sentiment has reached a threshold that merits a response or action
With the introduction of each new social media platform and tool, every communicator must decide what changes to their social strategy make sense for their brand. In this session, you’ll hear from social media experts on the changing social landscape, how to decide what trends are worth jumping on and how to integrate these social innovations into your comms to build stronger relationships with your audiences. You’ll learn:
- An overview of the new and recent changes to Twitter, LinkedIn, TikTok, Instagram and more with an emphasis on how these changes impact your messaging strategies
- Trending tools communicators are adopting into their social media strategies, new audio apps, image tools, AR lenses and more
- Tips for repurposing and cross-posting bite-sized bits of a major campaign or initiative across multiple social channels
- When it makes sense to participate in a social meme or trend with consideration for your brand voice
The leaders on stage have a lot of solutions for the biggest communications challenges. But so do you. During this interactive session, you’ll get to display that in this fun, peer-to-peer session. During the Hackathon:
- A challenge will be presented on the spot to the entire gathering. Topics will range from Crisis Communication to Media Relations to Employee Burnout to C-Suite Communications
- Small groups will convene for 25 minutes to craft suggestions and strategies to tackle that challenge
- Leaders of each group will then share the solutions and ideas on Day 2 of the conference
While matters related to ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance) have always been a consideration for the savvy communicator, demands of both internal and external stakeholders have set expectations that are likely to only grow in the future. Along with this comes the integral involvement of PR pros in all matters ESG. During this session, you will get to ask Catherine Hernandez-Blades, SVP of Marketing and Communications at SAIC, about how this reality has changed – and will continue to change – her role and yours.
Topics will include how a brand’s commitment to ESG – or lack thereof – impacts:
- The brand strategy
- Organizational reputation
- Recruitment, engagement and retention
- Stakeholder expectations
- The stock price
What stands between you and the opening reception are these parting thoughts and top takeaways from Day 1.
Toast to a day well done – rather, a year well-done! Join us for drinks and light fare at the Edison Rooftop for this Communications Week opening reception.
Email remains a powerful tool to enhance the overall employee experience. When it comes to ultimate internal email strategy, though, it often helps to work backwards by understanding what the most important KPIs are and then devising a plan to best achieve – even surpass – them. Kick off the conference’s second day with a master class detailing the internal-email metrics you need to focus on – and naturally gain tactical counsel in the process. Tasks you’ll be better equipped to tackle after this session include:
- Determining a solid open rate for your internal emails – and how to craft them to achieve it
- Focusing on the right KPIs for your emails – and weeding out metrics that don’t matter
- Getting inside the employee’s head: Recognizing email content that the workforce will actually read in full, engage with and act upon
- Differentiating between best external and internal email tactics (what works best for the former won’t necessarily for the latter)
Once again, Ragan and HarrisX are teaming up to deliver “perceptions” of the role(s) of CEOs and CCOs play on a multitude of hot-button topics, including: taking a stand on relevant and pressing global social issues, the role of organizational purpose in talent recruitment and retention, DE&I, CSR & ESG, and crisis and change comms. The findings from the survey will be released exclusively during this session. You’ll get a deep dive into how CEOs and CCOs from various organizations and industries are working together … or potentially not … to deliver messaging around these topics.
Only 36% of Americans have either a “great deal” or “fair amount” of trust in mass media, according to a 2021 Gallup poll. It’s as much of a daily battle for communicators hoping to place stories as it is for legacy media brands. During this panel, senior communicators at global media brands and journalists alike will discuss how communicators and reporters can work together to maintain and regain audience trust. You’ll hear about:
- Tactics to combat fake news
- How communicators can help media outlets preserve their vital role as the source of checks and balances to those in power
- An inside look at how media brands prioritize their content and sources through a process of verification
Video is expected to account for 82% of all online traffic (per Cisco), and 84% of consumers have been convinced to buy a product after watching a video (per Wyzowl). These stats should not be so much enlightening as they are calls to action to make sure you are on the frontlines of the latest strategies and technologies that are winning over key stakeholders. This panel discussion will ensure forward placement for you and your brands by focusing on:
- Building interactivity into your videos to engage, personalize and spur activity
- New ways of leveraging video to reach employees, the media and other stakeholders
- The long and short of it: Determining when a short or longer video is the way to go – and how to create the most effective one in both cases
- Live videos: A plan to make them look unplanned – and the benefits you will reap from doing so
In last year’s Ragan/HarrisX CEO-Communicators Competencies Survey, communications leaders said that writing was the skill they value most in their direct reports, underscoring the need to sharpen the proverbial pencil. In this session, our experts will look ahead and share their tips for writing copy that resonates with audiences in an era of longer news cycles and shorter attention spans. You’ll learn:
- Approaches to writing with a brand voice that fits the needs and preferred style of your audience Tips for writing concisely about technical, convoluted or dense topics
- Writing across platforms, from Twitter to your intranet, and how to edit your own writing
- Best practices for writing engaging emails How to build better relationships with digital and audience development teams by championing SEO writing best practices across the organization
In a competitive job market, the right social channels and platforms is crucial to build employer brand to ensure you attract and retain top talent. In this session, we’ll discuss the importance of being present where your prospective talent expects your branding communications be crafted with thoughtful consideration for channel mix, post structure and cadence, and brand voice. We’ll discuss:
- Channel-specific formats for celebrating culture, highlighting your employee value proposition and more
- Strategies for identifying and activating employee influencers to share their positive stories and experiences
- Tips for partnering with HR and other teams to spotlight policies and procedures that matter most to today’s job-seekers without overpromising
When it comes to measuring comms efforts, the question is no longer about “if.” It’s about “how” and “how much.” One of the biggest obstacles, though, seems to be time. According to Ragan’s 2022 Communications Benchmark Report, 58% of industry pros cite LACK OF TIME as their biggest obstacle. Point blank: this isn’t acceptable. You must make the time for this table-stakes requirement for the communicator of tomorrow. To help you solve this challenge, we bring together leading minds to discuss:
- Whether daily, weekly, or monthly, mapping out a schedule to build in time for efficient, effective measurement activity
- The latest tools and tactics that are helping communicator measure in a way that both boosts the brand and their own discipline’s status with the C-suite
- Identifying and incorporating powerful data that your brand is already collecting
Whether your workforce is remote, hybrid, in-office or flexible, communicators across all organizational configurations have been forced to rethink their strategies for employee communication to encourage engagement and protect company culture. In this session, we’ll examine the myriad ways that communicators can embed their skills and competencies across the organization to drive digital transformation and foster a sense of community, even across great distances. You’ll learn:
- Tips for building and refining your communications tech stack
- Remote work considerations around optimizing the medium and cadence of employee communications for maximum employee engagement
- What artificial intelligence can — and can’t — do to automate your remote workflows and outreach
- Strategies for partnering with HR to process the insights from employee listening and implement forward-thinking policies that reduce attrition
At this point, the need for diverse staffing is understood to be a business mandate, not just a philanthropic desire. It also is key to unlocking greater creativity. After all, how can you market effectively to an increasingly diverse public if your teams don’t represent that diversity, equity and inclusion? This is not a quick fix. But the time for talk is over. The time for action is now. Let this session be the impetus for you to start making real staffing progress on this front. It will do so by focusing on:
- Dispelling the myth that this is a matter only senior-level executives are responsible for solving. EVERY PR pro has a role to play – and we’ll underscore yours
- Taking legitimate accountability for the progress your organization has made and needs to make on DE&I. You must acknowledge and understand the problem before you can solve it.
- Uncovering avenues to help bring in diverse talent and inspire them once there
During this moderated un-session, you’ll have a chance to share with your peers your technology challenges and solutions that will help you make better decisions about the tools and tech you bring into your communications future. Bring your voice to the tech talk – or just listen and learn!
When brands stand up for an issue or cause, do their employees take note? In this session, we’ll discuss how effectively communicating and living your brand purpose goes far beyond “walking the talk” to take action — and how incorporating employee listening and embedding purpose communications across business functions can positively impact employee retention and your bottom line. You’ll learn:
- How to navigate whether you respond to issues with respect to your employee feedback, business imperatives and reputational considerations
- Employee listening strategies that identify emerging employee concerns and potential employee activists before they escalate
- Strategies for framing your purpose commitments around the financial health of your business and larger economic realities
- Tips for ensuring your purpose communications are not ‘one and done’ or siloed to one department
Regardless of where you and your team are in the pursuit of that “seat at the table,” we can all agree: Earning – and maintaining – the trust and reliance of the CEO is crucial to the PR function. Communicators must establish themselves as indispensable counselors to the C-suite when any and every business decision is being pondered. The best way to achieve that status – hear directly from a CEO as to what he or she expects and needs from the communications team. We present this session, in which you’ll learn:
- Managing up. Getting comfortable and effective at being the boss’ boss when the situation calls for it, which it will
- When to – and not to – push. The CEO’s personality and preferences must be factored in all communications planning
- Making an impression. This isn’t just about CCOs. Every member of the comms team can grab the CEO’s attention. Make sure you do so in the best light.
We’ll be taking the elevator down to the Edison Ballroom to celebrate the winners of the PR Daily Awards. Attendees of this conference receive a special ticket rate. See you there!
THANK YOU TO OUR SPONSORS:
If you are interested in sponsoring this industry event and discussing the numerous
opportunities available to showcase your organization and product contact us at
HannahL@ragan.com or 312-960-4204.
Each registration comes with a personalized Future Comms Conference Certificate of Completion for attending.
Plus, all attendees receive:
All slides and presentations from speakers and connection to our esteemed speakers.
BACK LIVE AND BETTER THAN EVER!
Beyond the conference, enjoy exciting networking events and experiences around the city.
NETWORKING COCKTAIL PARTY
The Rooftop at Edison Ballroom
Tuesday, November 1
Join us for this reception for all conference attendees. Mingle with colleagues, PR and communications leaders at this can’t-miss networking cocktail party.
Reconnect with colleagues and make new friends as you are enjoying great conversations, superb food and drink.
|Early Bird Rate
|Ragan Insider Registration||$1249||$1349||$1449|
|Ragan Insider Registration||$1149||$1249|
|Early Bird Rate
|Ragan Insider Registration||$1349||$1449|
Get your tickets early and save. Discounts are also available for the following:
Save an additional $200 off current rates.
Would you and your team like to attend? Group pricing is available when registering!
RAGAN COUNCIL MEMBER DISCOUNTS
Membership includes free registration passes. Contact Shallon Blackburn for more information on becoming a member.
RAGAN INSIDER DISCOUNTS
Insiders receive $250 off current rates. Not a Ragan Insider? You can become one during registration for this event!
Ragan Insiders save more: Ragan Insiders receive an additional $250 off current rates. Not a Ragan Insider? You can become one during the registration process for this event!
For those who can’t attend the conference live, an on-demand option is available during the registration process
You should attend if you spend at least a quarter of your time in any of these areas:
Public Relations • Brand Management • Internal Communications • Public Affairs
Executive Communications • Reputation Management • Crisis Communications
Issues Management • Social Media • Storytelling • Media Relations
If you are interested in sponsoring this industry event and discussing the numerous opportunities available to showcase your organization and product in front of hundreds of corporate wellness, HR and communications professionals contact Hannah Lavelle at HannahL@ragan.com or 312-960-4204.