Previous Speaker Presentations
Edward J. (Ted) Ryan
Dir., Heritage Comm
The Coca-Cola Co.
The Strategic Value of the Corporate Anniversary
Being part of the lead team for an anniversary is an honor and a rare privilege. I’ve been extremely fortunate to have participated in two major anniversaries; the 125th Anniversary of the Coca-Cola brand and, most recently, the 100th Anniversary of the Coca-Cola bottle, one of the worlds’ best known icons.
In my presentation, I’ll share best practices and what we learned planning these global 360-degree marketing/PR efforts and why these experiences are among the best in my career.
One of the challenges for leadership is how to uncover and use powerful aspects of the company’s usable past as an inspiration for your story going forward, which is always a human story. People like to be part of something that is bigger than themselves and an anniversary campaign that makes a difference and passionately engages customers, partners and employees will produce unprecedented outcomes lasting well beyond your anniversary year.
The practices we follow are transferable to organizations of varying industry and size and I look forward to sharing my experiences to help you with yours.
Former, VP Global Brand Systems
THINK – 100 years of Making the World Work Better.
In 2011 Kevin Bishop led IBM’s Global Centennial Program, a year long program of engagement that received many accolades, including the Silver Anvil Award for the largest corporate service event in history.
Kevin will explore the power of using your anniversary as a catalyst to understand your past as a way to inform your future and as an educational experience for employees, clients and other stakeholders. Kevin will outline the strategic planning process and lessons learned, for example:
1. Start with the strategic intent and be clear who you constituents are.
2. Have deep content and substance behind what you do. Being authentic is essential.
3. Humanize your story, making sure it is relevant to the people that impact your future, not your past.
4. Work each media element for what it’s uniquely good at.
5. Make sure to avoid the mistake of treating your anniversary as an isolated event. Your approach should last for the long term.
Robin C. Rotenberg
Vice President and COO
Contributing to a Sustainable Future for 150 Years and Beyond
Robin Rotenberg led the BASF 150th Anniversary campaign in North America and collaborated with the global team to define the deep strategic intent of the anniversary. What emerged was Creator Space, a program which connected people and ideas around the globe to co-create solutions for challenges related to energy, food and urban living.
Using the anniversary for societal good while creating a lasting legacy for BASF was of paramount importance. In 2050, the world’s population will reach nine billion with 70 percent of people living in cities. A global company like BASF has a responsibility to look at current and future issues through the lenses of different markets and understand local requirements. What will the cities of the future look like? How will our growing energy demands be met? How can there be enough healthy food for everyone? While the answers to these questions will differ from region to region, BASF sees chemistry and the global chemical industry as key solution providers.
Robin will share:
- The importance of defining deep strategic intent
- How BASF engaged employees, customers, scientists and the public through each phase of the campaign
- The planning cycle, how they organized globally and the importance of collaboration
- Which tactics & activities had the biggest impact throughout the year and how they were implemented
- High level strategies that are transportable to any organization
- Why significant anniversaries are not business as usual
- Insights on what worked, what didn’t, and why
- The Outcome
National Park Foundation
Leveraging a Moment to Ignite a Movement: The National Park Service Centennial
More than a moment to celebrate, anniversaries can be catalyst for change. At their best — they ignite a movement.
Since 2010, David French has led the National Park Service’s centennial initiative “Find Your Park/Encuentra To Parque.”
Credited with helping drive record visitation of over 307 million and aligning hundreds of partners behind a single message, #FindYourPark challenges audiences to redefine what a “park” can be and invites a marketing-savvy millennial generation to be part of a new era of national parks.
David will provide a valuable inside look at what it took to create, implement and measure the multi-year initiative. In particular he will share the strategies that defined and measured success and set a 100-year-old government institution on its path as a vibrant, modern brand. David will also discuss the immense power of partnerships and the freedom of not being afraid to ask. From talent and events to content and creative, he will share their 360-approach and the tactics that delivered the best return on investment. Finally, with the centennial anniversary still months away, David will offer lessons learned and challenges that remain as we embark on the second century of America’s national parks.
VP Strategic Comms.
Learn three building blocks essential for sustainable success.
On June 12, 2012, global banking giant Citigroup celebrated its 200th birthday. A remarkable anniversary for any company, but in the wake of the Great Banking Crisis of 2008-2009, and after becoming the recipient of massive public support, it was clear that just throwing a good party was not enough.
With calls for change from regulators, politicians and customers alike, echoing in the ears of the company’s management, a three year initiative was launched to create the bank of the future and reconnect employees and customers to Citi’s values and principles.
Jonathan Woodier led the 200Years Citi project and brings to The Corporate Anniversary Forum practical experience on how corporate milestones can be used to drive change and inspire employees to give the discretionary effort companies need to be great. From insights on how global messaging can be flexible enough to underpin local change to moving from a push to pull communications structure where employees willingly seek out information, Jonathan looks at driving change in the face of competing interests, creating an emotional network for employees, and re-establishing an authentic conversation with customers. When combined with Jonathan’s experience on three other banking strategic change initiatives, he proposes the three building blocks that lead to sustainable success.
Director of Communications
To make sure your Anniversary has a sustainable impact start with the question WHY.
100 Dreams. 100 Minds. 100 Years. The Steelcase centennial theme inspired curiosity about its own culture, the world, and the bright future for Steelcase. Michael Merk led the centennial project and shares how an anniversary is an incredible boost to your company’s strategic direction and how important it was to begin with the “think” phase.
Learn valuable tools and strategies to:
- Create a consistent message with global audiences
- Understand the value of planning early
- Engage employees for meaningful outcomes
- Leverage your anniversary to gain broader visibility and purpose, which for Steelcase was “unlocking human promise.”
Chief Innovation Officer
Turning Anniversaries into Movements: for the people, by the people
An anniversary is a time to reflect, on where we’ve been and on where we’re going. It’s an opportunity for employees and customers alike to reconnect with a company’s essential purpose, while inspiring new direction and energy for the future.
And in today’s world – where consumers become friends, viewers become followers, employees become community…where everyone has a voice and the content, ideas and opinions generated by the community matters more than that generated by management, marketers and their agencies – an anniversary can become the emotional spark that triggers a social movement.
Movements, however, never happen because they’re planned or decreed. They happen when people who genuinely care are moved to make them happen, and when they are given the tools and the support they need to succeed. Michael Schubert will take a look at how milestone events within some of the world’s leading companies have led to large-scale grassroots expression with game-changing effect, how content generated and sourced by the community has totally out-powered that created by professionals, and how companies can inspire and enable their people to turn an anniversary into a cause.
Senior VP Corp. Practice
Ketchum New York
A License to be Bold
It is by accident of birth that we are not one of the 1.2 billion people living in extreme poverty, 2.5 billion people without access to proper sanitation, 1 billion people who go to be hungry every night or one of the 200 million people who don’t have a job.
With increasing stakeholder pressure to address the myriad of social issues, more and more companies are putting a stake in the ground around corporate citizenship or sustainability and leveraging an anniversary as the moment in time to tell the world. Based on ten years at the United Nations and another ten leading communications for a variety of companies, Monica will share four examples of companies who have successfully launched new sustainability and corporate citizenship programs to mark an anniversary.
Previous Workshop Presentations
Practical Tools To Plan An Anniversary Strategically and Execute It Flawlessly
Workshops Presented by:
Keith Yamashita | Chairman & Founder
Nicolas Maitret | Principal
Sabrina Clark | Managing Project Manager
Crafting Your Story
Create a story that is both true to the character of your organization and deeply relevant to your constituents.
Explore how to:
+ Create a narrative frame
+ Understand your past
+ Envision your future
Shaping Your Strategy
Design your anniversary to drive the right business outcomes for the constituents who matter most to you.
Explore how to:
+ Identify key constituents
+ Define business outcomes per constituent
+ Shift constituents’ beliefs
Building Your Plan
Build the experiences that will transform your organization, and manage the program so it achieves all you want to do.
Explore how to:
+ Map the emotional arc of the year
+ Plan the right deployment and engagement tactics
+ Build a multidisciplinary team
+ Maximize ROI
Workshop 1 -
Looking Back: Returning to “Why?”
In his TEDx talk, Simon Sinek tells us “People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.” When we return to ‘why’ we were founded, it can help us re-center on a sense of purpose and re-imagine it today. If we were founded with the same purpose today, what would we do? How would we do it?. In this working session, participants will workshop this question in small groups with each other, helping one another clarify a founding purpose and explore all that it could inspire today.
Workshop 2 -
Looking Forward: Envisioning the next 25 / 50 / 100 years through Design Fiction
What kinds of experiences could we enable or create for people in the future? Design fiction helps us weave together our hunches for the future of our brand, business, and significance, into a cohesive narrative. Far from a ‘plan’ these design fictions are provocations and prototypes that invite other people into the conversation and help advance a shared 3D vision for the future. In this session, we’ll share some inspiration and prompts to help you craft your own design fiction and help others do the same.