I knew the first thing I had to do when I got into the office today was go to the Sage Summit website. Sure enough, the home page had changed from “It’s coming!” to “Register now!” And from the looks of it, the Big Easy is going to be a big deal for Sage and all attendees.
As they announced last week, Sage Summit 2015 (New Orleans, July 27-30) registration begins today. And this year, Sage is offering two full months of Early Bird registration with $500 off the regular admission for the week! (That’s $299 instead of a whopping $799. And, it’s for customers only. Sorry fellow partners!) Of course, then there’s those of you who signed up directly after Sage Summit 2014. That special was for $99 registration if you sign up a second person. You should be receiving your discount code via e-mail.
For those who may find it difficult to schedule a business trip that far ahead, Sage is offering other discounts as well. After Early Bird registration ends, you can still receive $200 off the price of standard admission if you register by June 30. Or, if more than one person from your company will attend, Sage is offering a group discount of up to $400 per person from May 1 all the way up to the day Sage Summit begins (July 27). (This one has the biggest fine print: There must be three or more associates from the same company, the registration will be audited, and it can’t be combined with any other offers.)
Sage Summit 2015 sessions
First of all, I have to take back something I said last week. I mentioned that Sage usually doesn’t have the session agenda published when registration opens. Sure enough, they surprised me with the catalog first draft! And even more impressive is that it’s not hidden behind the registration wall. (This is perfect for people who need to discuss ROI with executives who may be curious about Sage Summit.) On the drop-down menu at the top of the Sage Summit home page, go to Schedule > Training Schedule, and click on View Training Catalog.
(There’s a slight hitch, and I’ve already let Danielle know about it. I tried the advanced search to look for Sage 100 Contractor specific classes, and it still showed some Sage 300 ERP Online sessions. They’re going to work to get that corrected ASAP.)
And now for your moment of serendipity: Right after I got done writing the first paragraph of this section, I received an e-mail from Danielle Cote, the Vice President of Event Marketing for Sage, who wanted to make sure I knew what was so special about the Sage Summit catalog this year. New this year is something Sage is calling “You-based Training”:
“It’s simpler than ever to find and register for Sage Summit training. While you register for Sage Summit, the website creates training suggestions based on your profile and business needs. Be sure to review and select the training you want to add to your agenda. It will make planning your event experience quick and easy.” — Sage Summit website
“The logic behind it is crazy,” Danielle said. “We designed the system so that when people input a little bit about themselves, what product they’re using, what they’re interested in learning about, the system uses logic that matches sessions to their profile. It then recommends sessions — you can select them or not — or you can pick from the full catalog.”
The concept for this change came about because the folks at Sage found that people would jump into the catalog of 300 or 400 sessions, and it was hard to figure out what their day should look like.
“It can be an overwhelming exercise,” Danielle said. “You would get there, and then decided to change everything. This way, you can let us recommend a few things for you, and you can still change them on-site or ahead of time, but this helps with the initial legwork.”
Once again, Sage is breaking ground in the events industry. According to Danielle, this is a first-of-its-kind catalog program, and they were initially told it couldn’t be done.
“Sure we’re going to have some issues (when we first roll it out) but it worked to our testing level,” Danielle said. “We’re pretty excited what it may do for our attendees.”
Danielle also said that this is only the product-specific catalog so far. They’re still working on finalizing the product-neutral, industry and business sessions. Also, the session recommendation tool will only be available once you register and sign in to select your sessions.
What does the agenda look like for Sage Summit 2015?
Like last year, Sage will open each morning with a lecture session, starting with the keynote address Tuesday morning. On Wednesday and Thursday mornings, there will be a featured speaker session, like the ones last year with Magic Johnson and Biz Stone. New this year will be two partner-only presentations each day: Insights (a nod to the original partner conference) and Perspectives.
Sage Summit will once again end with a closing celebration on Thursday night. Last year, the Neon Trees were the stars of the show. Can’t wait to see who will be appearing this year! The other evenings will end fairly early as well, giving more time for networking, sightseeing, or taking a break from the hustle and bustle.
Is there anything else I need to know about Sage Summit 2015?
Sage Summit 2015 will take place at the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. There are three hotels available to registrants:
- Sheraton New Orleans ($159/night)
- Hilton New Orleans Riverside ($169/night)
- New Orleans Marriott $171/night)
Make sure that you book your hotel room(s) through the Sage Summit registration area in order to get the group discounts. Also under the registration area is a tab for airfare discounts. These haven’t been posted yet, but there’s a bit of information there, too.
Don’t worry, that’s not all there is to know about Sage Summit. Danielle told me a few tidbits that will be released soon, and there will be much more to talk about in the months ahead. Keep tuning in to find out more!