My LMA18 Conference Experience - Joanne Thorud

We asked the LMA Northeast recipients of the 2018 LMA Annual Conference Scholarship Fund to tell us about their experience in the Big Easy. Here Boston member Jo Thorud provides her top highlights and takeaways from her time at our industry’s biggest yearly gathering. 

Tell us about the highlights of your LMA18 Conference experience.

From the moment I stepped on the plane at Logan Airport and saw a sea of familiar Boston legal marketers, I knew it was going to be a great conference.  

The program topics were timely and relevant, and I found myself conflicted during many sessions as to which ones to attend. I made a point to cover all of the BoK tracks (Business Development, Business of Law, Client Services, Communications, Marketing Management and Leadership and Technology Management) and felt that strategy gave me a well-rounded programming experience. 

The social activities, as always, were fabulous. I enjoyed the opportunity to meet other members of the Small Firm SIG Group during lunch. Our group discussion forum is very active, and members are quick to respond to requests for tips and best practices, so it was nice to put some faces with the names that frequently come across my inbox.  

The Northeast Region Reception at the Little Gem Saloon was a great opportunity to reconnect with and meet new regional members. I and my fellow scholarship winners had our moment in the spotlight when we were interviewed by Stefanie Marrone, who covered the conference on Facebook Live. Finally, the multiple networking receptions hosted by numerous business partners were above and beyond amazing, and all embraced the spirit of New Orleans.  

What was your top takeaway from the LMA18 Conference?

The program that stuck with me the most was Big Ideas for Small Firm Marketers, presented by Jeff Dennis and Lindsey Dilsaver.  This rapid-fire presentation (in a PechaKucha format) was packed with information and provided a fantastic handout filled with multiple ideas that any marketer could implement immediately, including an outline on how to create an impressive annual marketing report. 

What advice would you give to someone who is attending the conference for the first time?

Plan wisely.  There is a lot to cover in just a few days, so being prepared is key. Between the variety of educational programs from which to choose, networking with friends and vendors during session breaks, and the multitude of social events you will be invited to attend, the conference app is a good tool to keep you organized and on schedule, and will help ensure you make the most of your conference experience.  

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