Looking Back on DMA &THEN 2015

When we learned that the annual Direct Marketing Association (DMA) conference was taking place in our own backyard (shout out to Boston!), we could hardly wait. Right off the bat, it was clear that the 2015 DMA show had a much different ambiance than in years past. The DMA re-invented its flagship event this year with a trendy new name (&THEN), a hip new vibe, and a vigorous focus on digital innovation.

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Speaking of innovation, a few highlights from the event include:

  • 15 early-stage martech startups battling it out for $25,000 in a “Shark Tank” style competition. Congrats Vistar Media!
  • The 2015 Innovation Awards showcasing the next generation of digital disrupters. Shameless plug: FreshAddress took home an award for our eSpend Score email scoring solution.

In my eyes, there were 3 things that made this event a success:

  1. Content focused on inspiration and change. I’ll take a free  one-on-one session with an expert or an interactive workshop over a glorified sales pitch any day! Each session I attended taught me something I could bring back to the office and benefit from right away. I definitely can’t say that for every tradeshow I attend.
  2. The chance to see Boston recognized for the thriving marketing innovation it is. Enough said.
  3. Our epic casino party (more about this in a minute).

While DMA goers worked hard all day networking and attending sessions, they played hard too. 

The Goo Goo Dolls put on a killer show. Grammy Award winner John Legend performed and closed the event with a touching keynote speech. There was even a beer pong tourney (courtesy of Boingnet). Our very own Jon Tejeda took home the first place title! Check out this video of him reliving his college days.

We also hosted a “cocktails and cards” DMA party at Lucky’s Lounge. We had a blackjack tournament, antique cars, tons of food and drink, and raffled off an Apple watch. Congrats to our winner, Lauren McNally, of American Management Association!

We had a blast talking (and playing blackjack) with our current clients and partners, and met some great new friends. Thank you so much to all who attended – it was certainly a night to remember! Couldn’t make it to our party? Here are some photos of the event.

We’ll see you next year, &THEN, in sunny LA – and don’t worry, we’ll bring plenty of ostriches!


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