2019 Conference Programme Coming Shortly
The Conference



The annual memcom conference is our flagship event for professional associations, membership organisations and the wider non-profit sector. It features over 30 high-profile speakers, including CEOs of major professional bodies, and the most leading-edge suppliers of the moment, all sharing their insight and expertise. We’re proud to retain an extremely senior audience at this event and all our delegates benefit from the expertise imparted and the invaluable networking opportunities. It’s one of the leading dates in the sector’s calendar.


The next memcom conference (and the lunchtime awards which follow it) will take place on Wednesday 16th May 2018. Our booking system will open early next year so please sign-up to our emails from our homepage link to ensure you don’t miss out. The full programme will be launched in January. 


View the photos from the 2017 event and also play this video which gives you a good taste of what the day’s all about!


Would you like more information about the content of the memcom conference seminars? Or are you interested in speaking or exhibiting? If you’d like to have a chat about anything memcom related please get in touch with Debbie Hockham, Director of memcom. We’d love to hear from you.


memcom conference 2018 –  preliminary agenda


The memcom conference and awards brings together senior leaders from across the spectrum of professional bodies and associations to learn, share, debate and celebrate their achievements.  The morning conference features over 30 high profile speakers and the awards lunch celebrates excellence in membership, marketing, communications, product development and people – highlighting best practice, teamwork and leadership.


memcom is planned with significant input from senior leaders in the professional body and association sector and at a recent meeting of senior marketing directors there was strong consensus that a theme around Staying Ahead in Challenging Times would make for an illuminating conference. Themes will include influence and relevancy threats for professional membership organisations; dealing with the postmodern professional, GDPR, Brexit, digital disruption, Charity Commission Act 2016 and delivering public good.


Here’s a sneak preview of the agenda outlined…


Plenary session – all delegates to attend


As professional membership organisations navigate through challenging times, the conference chair will outline the potential downside that these challenges pose and the opportunities which they offer. The chair will then introduce the first speakers who will lead a scene setting debate:


‘Membership is dead <> Long live membership


The book Membership Economy postulated that:


“As individuals grow frustrated with the burdens of owning, caring for and storing too much stuff, they are looking for ways to minimize that stress. They are also experiencing a need for meaningful connection and community.”


At the same time the attitudes of postmodern professionals (including Generation Z/Centennials) is affecting membership organisations partly through the fragmentation of authority and the commoditisation of knowledge. They have a sense that traditional membership structures are somehow restricting, smothering and controlling.


Two speakers will put forward views on the value of professional membership organisations to their sectors and society at large. They will consider how strong the current offering is and also the possible abandonment of traditional member journeys/membership for life approaches and the adoption of more flexible product and service delivery to meet the changing needs of professionals. The effect of the membership economy and postmodern professionals will also be debated.


As always at memcom, this speaker debate will be followed by an audience debate and extended discussion on the theme.


Breakout streams


Although the stream agendas are structured to appeal to those with particular types of roles, this year delegates can choose to move from stream to stream to find the mix of topics which most appeal to them.


Stream 1            Maintaining relevancy

This stream will challenge whether your strategy is fit for purpose and the changing professional landscape. It will also offer a deep analysis of the implications of cultural, political and social change including Brexit. Delegates will be presented with new research on the attitudes of the postmodern professional and members’ and non-members’ understanding of, and empathy towards, the Professional Body offer.


Who should attend? – senior membership professionals, Directors and CEOs particularly concerned with the strategic direction of their organisation


Stream 2            Delivering the strategy – content, data and technology

Stream 2 will offer an in-depth investigation into the most-cutting edge – and effective – tools, processes and knowledge dissemination to successfully engage with members, non-members and the wider profession.  It will also delve into utilising a single source of data and the implications of the looming GDPR launch. Relevant and fresh research findings will also be presented.


Who should attend? – those with responsibility for content, CRM, data and technology solutions


Stream 3            The Business of membership

How to ensure you’re on top of commercial trends and opportunities including NPD, training, events, sponsorship, partnerships and grants will be the main theme of Stream 3. And then how best to successfully balance this commerciality with delivering public good. Research around revenue trends and membership organisations’ attitudes to commerciality versus their ethical positioning will be presented and analysed.


Who should attend? – Those with commercial responsibilities and those concerned with the commercial versus

ethical positioning of the organisation


Stream 4            Managing and influencing stakeholders

Stream 4 will be focussed around how to develop an effective public relations strategy when amidst a backdrop of declining governmental influence. It will explore what good governance looks like and how trustees interact with and support the executive. It will also delve into the employers’ perspective including workforce planning, Brexit impact, flexible/virtual working. As with all streams, supporting research will be presented in order to cement ideas and also to pose further questions for debate.


Who should attend? – those responsible for public affairs plus those involved in managing committees, volunteers and other stakeholders


Our booking system will open early next year so please sign-up to our emails from our homepage link to ensure you don’t miss out. The full programme will be launched in January.