Book Your Ticket to the Music City for the 2014 Grand Ole AAN Convention

2014 AAN Convention ★ July 10 - 12 ★ Sheraton Nashville

The early registration deadline for the 2014 AAN Convention in Nashville is just three weeks away. Members who register by June 13 will receive our best-in-the-industry rate of $225 per person. Any paper which pays for four registrations can register additional staffers for free.

The deadline to apply for a scholarship/grant is June 6.

If you haven’t taken a look at the schedule yet, here’s a sampling of some of the sessions:

  • Audio on the Cheap: Tips and tricks from Federal News Radio web editor and It’s All Journalism podcast producer Michael O’Connell.

  • The New Face of Ownership in Alt Media: This isn’t your father’s alt-weekly any more. Dailies own alts in Chicago in Baltimore. A former executive for an Ohio chemical manufacturer is the majority owner of several former Times Shamrock papers. And over the past few years, Nashville-based SouthComm has quietly become the second-largest chain of alt-weeklies in the U.S. What’s their vision for the future of alt media?

  • Do It Yourself SEO: Learn simple steps you can take to improve your website’s search engine visibility before you shell out for expensive SEO (search engine optimization) services. Dig Boston associate publisher Marc Shepard will cover how SEO should fit within your overall digital strategy, how to conduct a basic digital self-diagnostic test, and practical tips to help your target audience find you.

  • The America of Tomorrow: Pew Research Center Executive Vice President Paul Taylor will discuss how U.S. demographics will change in the next 50 years, and what it means for the future of media.

  • Mastering Sales Fundamentals Workshop: This full-day workshop will cover all the fundamentals of the sales process from prospecting to closing and everything in between. Amie Stein, director of training and development for the Local Media Association, will lead this highly interactive session which will provide both sales executives and leaders with ways to further develop as sales professionals and successful sales teams.

  • Saving Community Journalism: The Path to Profitability: Knight Chair in Journalism and Digital Media Economics Penny Muse Abernathy will discuss how newspapers can build community online and identify new opportunities to generate revenue.

  • Editorial Collaboration Models: The Media Consortium executive director Jo Ellen Kaiser and Georgetown University assistant dean Amy Kovac-Ashley will discuss how alts can collaborate with universities, non-profits, and other national partners on story projects.

  • Legal Hotline, Live! AAN attorney Kevin Goldberg will take audience questions on legal and copyright issues.

  • Innovating Locally: Fresh off her year as a Knight Fellow at Stanford, former alt-weekly editor Alexa Schirtzinger will present the results of her fellowship research on innovation in local news. Expect some interesting case studies, an innovation toolkit, handy tips for freshening up your online presence, and free candy.

  • Editorial Standards: In this editors-only session, attendees will discuss the results of the AAN Editorial Standards survey, which addresses various benchmarks, as well as queries about how editors deploy their resources. The session will consist of a lively free-wheeling discussion about how editors are using their budgets and staffs, with the goal of generating new ideas and inspiration.

  • Financial Standards: Michael Crystal will moderate discussion of this year’s updated and different benchmarking survey. (Closed session, open only to AAN members who completed the longer version of the annual survey.)

All of this, plus: Long-Form Super-Panel; Events and Sponsorships; Government Oversight; Mobile Ad Platform Case Studies; Community is King; Sell Sheet Inspiration; Explanatory Journalism; and much much more! And when the sun goes down, our hosts at Nashville Scene are going to give you a taste of the Music City that will knock your socks off.

So what are you waiting for? Register now.