Meetings, Membership & Marketing Institute

The Meetings, Membership and Marketing Institute (The Triple M) is geared to bring new innovations, insights, experiences, opinions, and success stories. Come prepared to learn, as well as enjoy networking and fraternity with fellow executives and supplier partners.

Date: Friday, April 7, 2017
Location: Saratoga Hilton - Saratoga Springs, NY

Agenda | Sponsor! | Breakout Sessions | Registration & FeesImportant Details

Registration includes access to (4) four hours of interactive and engaging professional development (CAE/CMP), parking in the hotel lot, continental breakfast with healthy options, coffee breaks between sessions, networking hot buffet lunch, and round table discussions providing a peer to peer idea exchange!


Featuring Keynote Speaker: 

Lowell Aplebaum, CAE, Chief Executive Officer
Next Connextion

Lowell Aplebaum, CAE is the CEO of Next Connextion – a company working with associations on value-focused approaches to strategy development, membership and volunteer management. He recently authored the chapter on emerging trends in ASAE’s Membership Essentials 2nd edition, served as the co-Executive Editor and Contributing Author for the Component Relations Handbook 2nd edition and authored the chapter on Component Relations for Professional Practices in Association Management 3rd Edition.

He currently serves on the overseeing commission for the Certified Association Execution certification, and Chaired ASAE’s Task Force on CEO Pathways. He is the creator of a master-level learning series called Through the CEO Lens.  His work on global efforts for associations has included experience across five continents, hundreds of volunteer groups, and all 50 states in the U.S.   

Schedule of Events
8:00 AM - Registration & Continental Breakfast
8:30 to 9:45 AM - Opening General Session
10:00 to 11:00 AM - Morning Concurrent Sessions
11:15 to 12:15 PM - Morning Concurrent Sessions
12:15 to 2:00 PM - Lunch & Round Table Discussion Session

Opening General Session: 

Networking Evolution: Building Stronger Relationships
Sponsored By: Destination Niagara USA
Speaker: Lowell Aplebaum, CAE, Chief Executive Officer
Next Connextion

Our associations maproduce the highest quality programs, products and services, but what makes us different from any retail store is the community of colleagues any member can find. What we call networking is the cement that holds together the bricks of our non-dues revenue lines of value. Yet, for all associations who tout themselves as being the ‘professional home’ for their industry, this most often means putting volunteers and members alike in a room with wine and cheese with the instruction to ‘meet each other.’ 

Associations can do better.

Together we will explore how to deepen Board Member connections. How to create micro-brain trusts for volunteers, members, and industry stakeholders. How to create personal conversation starters for 5 or 5,000. We will learn about these approaches, we will try them, and we will analyze/evaluate them. 

We all want to see a deeper loyalty to our organizations from our volunteers and our members - that starts with setting in place a dynamic of belonging and connection. This interactive session will give you those first steps, providing you with new perspectives on how to create a networking evolution.

Concurrent Sessions (10:00 AM - 11:00 AM) 

Session A: Building a Membership Valuation Program
Sponsor: Villa Roma Resort & Conference Center
Speaker: Garry Polmateer, Managing Partner
Red Argyle

What if a member called and you knew that they received $1,700 worth of value from your organization last year?  Learn how to put together an evaluation program that can calculate the value that members receive from your organization.  Whether you're providing monetary benefits or other items that can't quite be priced, building a system that can aggregate and communicate what your organization is doing for each member in a custom way can be a great tool for any membership department. This session will cover how to build your member value criteria, provide some insight into how to actually use the calculation, and some practical tips on how to use the information once you've got it.

Session B: Planners & Suppliers: A Successful Partnership 
Sponsored by Visit Rochester

Speaker: Mame Noonan, CMP, Global Account Executive
Conference Direct

Understand both perspectives: Planner & Supplier.  Learn that the RFP to contracting process can be a smooth one when both parties understand each other’s challenges and capabilities. 

Session Takeaways:  How to build a good, solid RFP that will get the hotels attention and prompt response.  Contracting tips and next steps once a contract is signed.

Target Attendee: 

  • Hotel suppliers, especially independent properties that don’t have the benefit of major brand support.  
  • Beginner to intermediate planners including those who are tasked with planning meetings, incentive trips, large conventions and simple room blocks
  • Attendees who may be given the responsibility to plan a meeting with no meeting planner experience

Session C: Media Relations Beyond Press Releases
Sponsored by: Courtyard by Marriott-Schenectady at Mohawk Harbor
Speaker: Alison Krawczyk, Director of Public Relations

This presentation will examine how an association can utilize media relations, even when there is no hard-news announcement to share, like the opening of a new chapter or an event. The creativity of a publicist comes into play when there isn’t a news item–that’s when evergreen pitch topics, events, and awards can be leveraged to keep an association top-of-mind with media and potential members. Takeaways include: 

  • An overview of PR and how it's relevant to the overall marketing strategy
  • Understanding of the media and what makes an interesting story
  • Insight on developing pitch angles not related to news announcements

Concurrent Sessions (11:15 AM - 12:15 PM) 

Session A: Member Retention: Creating the Member Experience 
Sponsored by: Visit Syracuse
Lowell Aplebaum, CAE, Chief Executive Officer
Next Connextion

The decision to remain a member comes down to more than the quality of the product or program purchased – it is about the experience that surrounds the interaction.  The value opportunities you create for your member should be expressed not as a list on a brochure, but as targeted solutions that can help them wherever they may be in their career. This session will challenge you to think about new approaches to create an experience that will deepen the connection with (and increase the retention rate of) your members.

Session B: How to Uncover and Facilitate the Learning & Connection that Meeting Attendees Actually Want and Need
Adrian Segar, Founder, Conferences That Work |

Session limited to 30 attendees

Every meeting attendee arrives with unique wants and needs. They may be facing specific professional challenges or want to learn more about certain topics or issues. Many will want to connect with others who share their interests or who could benefit from their expertise and experience. Unfortunately, conventional fixed-content meeting programs rarely provide the level of learning and connection that is possible.

Given this complex reality, how can you make your meetings maximally relevant and important to your attendees?

In this short workshop, led by veteran meeting designer and facilitator Adrian Segar, you'll experience simple yet powerful core techniques you can use at the start of your meetings to uncover and facilitate the connection and learning your attendees actually want and need. You'll learn, share, and connect with other session participants in ways that are relevant to your needs without the use of artificial "ice-breakers" or high-tech.

During the post-lunch roundtable with Adrian, you'll have the opportunity to explore additional ways to incorporate relevant participation, connection, engagement, and action outcomes into your meeting sessions, making them experiences that truly meet attendees' wants and needs.

About Adrian Segar

Adrian Segar is a meeting designer and event facilitator with over thirty years experience, and an energetic champion for participation-rich and participant-led meetings that uncover and satisfy attendee needs for relevant learning, connection, engagement, and action. He is the author of two books on meeting design: Conferences That Work: Creating Events That People Love and The Power of Participation: Creating Conferences That Deliver Learning, Connection, Engagement, and Action. Adrian writes regularly on event design and related issues at

Session C: Social Media Ethics: #BlurredLines
Speakers: Carla Schlist, Director of Business Development
American Institute of Architects New York State

Elise Friello, Esq., Lemon Law Arbitration Program Manager
NYS Dispute Resolution Association

Social media has dramatically changed the way we communicate with each other and how we engage with businesses, whether we are looking to their pages to receive information or request it.  Members expect two-way conversations when they choose to engage on social media so your team must be well-trained in not only what can and should be posted but also how to respond.  For employers and employees alike, there are many ethically grey areas in terms of social media use expectations in the personal and business environments, as well as reasonable expectations of privacy.  Several examples of common ethical dilemmas will be shared and creative, legal messaging strategies will be presented.  This session will also touch on how courts and legislatures are weighing in.  Participants will gain a better understanding of social media ethical dilemmas and the liabilities associated with posting content online.

12:15 to 1:00 PM - Lunch Buffet

1:00 to 2:00 PM - Round Table Discussions

NEW! This year’s program will incorporate Peer to Peer Round Table Discussions! 

To stay competitive and relevant in the association and meetings industries, it is important to learn from others and share best practices. Plan on joining us for this round table discussion session where you’ll share your experiences, best practices, insights and knowledge in small groups and learn from your industry peers. Everyone brings unique experience and expertise to sharing sessions!

Group topics will include topics discussed during the breakout sessions and each table will have a moderator to help keep the conversation going. Many of our table moderators will be the speakers featured during the breakout sessions! Were you unable to attend a session? Looking for more information? Join the table that’s relevant to you!

Table conversation will be limited to 4 rounds of 15 minutes each and will start with a question designed to spark focused discussion. At the end of each round you will join a new table! Don’t miss this opportunity to share experiences, discover new ideas and network with your peers! Participation in the Round Table Discussion provides (1) one CE hour! 

Thank You Sponsors!

Host: Saratoga Hilton
A/V: CMI Communications
Breakfast: Saratoga Convention & Tourism Bureau

Keynote: Destination Niagara USA

Breakout Session Sponsors 
Courtyard by Marriott-Schenectady at Mohawk Harbor  
Visit Rochester
Visit Syracuse
Villa Roma Resort & Conference Center

Coffee Break Sponsors
The Desmond Hotel and Conference Center
Holiday Inn Saratoga 

Get in front of association and meeting professionals! Educational programs are a great way to market your product, services, venue or destination. All sponsors receive recognition in the e-newsletter, on the event registration page, during event announcements, on ESSAE's social media platforms and on signage at the program! Additional sponsorship benefits can be found by clicking on the link below. Consider an event sponsorship today! 

Sign up today!

Lunch Sponsor: OPEN
Session Sponsors (6): 2 available 

Registration & Fees

Registration includes access to (4) four hours of interactive and engaging professional development (CAE/CMP), parking, continental breakfast with healthy options, coffee breaks between sessions, networking hot buffet lunch, and round table discussions with session speakers for a peer to peer idea exchange! 

Full Day (Sessions & Lunch Program)
Members: $105 | Non-Members: $150

Morning Sessions Only 
Members: $75 | Non-Members: $100

Lunch & Round Table Session Only
Members: $50 | Non-Members: $60

ESSAE Members must sign into their profiles to access the Member Rate. If you have any issues with logging into your profile, please contact Rebecca Sheehan

NOTERegistering for " Morning Sessions Only" does not include access to the afternoon (lunch) round table discussion session. Attendees must register for a Full Day Pass or Lunch Only Pass to gain access to the Lunch and Round Table Discussion session. Thank you for your understanding. 

Important Details! 

Door Prizes: Yes! There will be door prizes! Bring your business cards for a chance to have your name drawn during lunch!

Volunteers: We are looking for volunteers to help with this program! If you are interested, please email us to sign up!

Accommodations: A limited number of overnight rooms will be available at the Saratoga Hilton for $139/night (Thursday night only). Click here to make your reservations: 

Parking: The Saratoga Hilton will provide complimentary parking for all attendees.

Social Media: Connect with us! @EmpireStateSAE - Event Hashtag: #ESSAETripleM

Credits: This event will offer up to (4) four credit hours towards the CAE/CMP designations. ESSAE is a CAE approved provider, formally registered with the CAE program and committed to providing education that meets the CAE Commission's standards for helping individuals earn or maintain the Certified Association Executive credential. CAE Approved Providers have received guidance on such standards and pledged to properly represent course eligibility for CAE credit. Details on how to track your points/clock hours, visit:

Cancellation Policy: Registrations must be made and paid for by March 31, 2017. Registration cancellations received prior to the deadline may be eligible to receive a refund less $25 service fee. Cancellations received after the stated deadline will not be eligible for a refund. Refunds will not be available for registrants who choose not to attend an event (no-shows). Cancellations will be accepted in writing only and must be received by the stated cancellation deadline. All refund requests must be made by the attendee or credit card holder. Refunds will be credited back to the original credit card used for payment. If you are unable to attend, you may send an alternate to the event without additional charge.

Questions? Contact ESSAE: 518-463-1755 or