What moment from HITMC 2019 will you remember in five years?
It wasn’t the end of Shannon Lee’s “Magic Sauce” session, when I put on a rainbow-striped horn to hand out Unicorn Tears.
It wasn’t the terrific session on content marketing for community health, or the fascinating case study about motivating MIT students to participate in health initiatives.
It wasn’t even the riveting talk by Dan Heath—author of the bestseller The Power of Moments—which was one of the greatest in-person presentations I’ve ever seen.
No, the moment from HITMC 2019 I’ll remember five years from now came at breakfast Thursday, when Jennifer M. Joe, MD, CEO of Medstro, spoke excitedly about a diagnostics breakthrough involving swabs of certain human excretions that aren’t ordinarily discussed over breakfast. No one actually did a spit-take, but that’s the moment the neon sign went off in my head: HITMC is no ordinary conference.
Not just a conference—a community
HITMC, of course, stands for Healthcare and IT Marketing Conference. But it also stands for Healthcare and IT Marketing Community, and that’s what this event is—a three-day gathering of people who care about marketing healthcare and IT but also, even more so, care about each other.
Event founder John Lynn, during his opening remarks, said there were no competitors at HITMC because we were there to help and learn from each other. “This year’s theme is ‘Be Remarkable,’” he said, “and the best way to be remarkable is to be human. Vulnerability is not a weakness.”
We recruited a Boston-area calligrapher to meet people at our table and record some of these and other moments from HITMC attendees. Because, when hundreds of like-minded professionals share a passion for helping people lead healthier lives and truly care about each other, there are going to be magical moments when they get together.
Five years from now—your favorite HITMC 2019 moments
We asked a random sampling of HITMC attendees and speakers this question:
What moment from HITMC 2019 will you remember in five years, and why?
Five years from now I will remember my first impressions of Colin and John welcoming newcomers by sharing personal stories of their growth. That essentially set the pace for what would be an incredible three days of learning.
It was amazing to see the veterans of the community immediately embrace giving the new folks the rundown and making them feel comfortable. The energy in that tightly packed conference room for the first formal session of the conference was palpable.
When I sat down, everyone around me immediately greeted me with a smile and a friendly handshake. But none of them said the company they were with or their job title. Just their name. I quickly realized that these people weren’t here to add me to their contact list and potential drip campaign. They were just genuinely nice, welcoming people.
Everyone was anxious to shake hands, share stories and make real connections. I saw friends from previous conferences and met new friends I’ll look forward to tweeting with and seeing in years to come. In five years, maybe I’ll wear my T-shirt from this year and folks will say, ‘Hey, I remember that year—the conference was in Boston!
I didn’t see anyone I knew, yet each person I walked by welcomed me openly. The warmth and just sheer awesomeness of the HITMC community is truly amazing. I am happy to be a part of it.
I was most taken when a CIO panelist almost begged for people to stop sending emails that address the issues “that keep her up at night”—a plea from a typical target for less artifice. I loved seeing this tackled head-on at HITMC.
In Thursday’s patient panel, “The Value of the Patient Voice,” Linda Kenney noted that caregivers, surgeons and nurses are people, too, and we need to consider their mental, physical and emotional wellness as much as anyone else’s. I will carry that with me throughout all my interactions in healthcare.
The thing I will probably remember actually happened outside the conference. Friday afternoon, I had the chance to explore downtown Boston with John Lynn and around 10 others. It was a really great chance to get to know people in the HITMC community a lot better.
I stepped out of an Uber in front of a nondescript warehouse in an unknown area of town looking for dry ice. As the car drove away, it hit me that maaaybe it wasn’t the best idea to be out here by myself with no real knowledge of what I was doing. I followed the docks along the side and towards the back where I was then roughly handed a paper bag full of dry ice. Made it back safe and sound—and you better believe Shannon wasn’t the only one who was able to add bravery to her magic sauce!
I will always remember Jeff and Stacy passing out magic juice at the end of Shannon’s session. Seriously, that whole session was a fantastic follow-up with actionable tips to Dan Heath’s keynote.
My moment was during my talk when I saw people wiping away tears during some of the touching videos I shared. Then there was the laughter and cheers after Stacy took a swig of our Magic Sauce on stage. You always want to know that you’re reaching people on an emotional level, and in those moments I really felt a connection with the audience.
I got three: 1) Stacy G. winning Marketer of the Year! 2) The conference staff needing to add more chairs to accommodate the standing room-only crowd at Shannon’s magical presentation! 3) The standing ovation for Dan Heath!
I will never forget the moment when I heard my name called for Best Agency Marketer of the Year. It was what I imagined winning a Tony Award would be like … a floaty dream out-of-body experience! I was overwhelmed by the honor and felt so much love and pride for the community. I stand today transformed by my experience of the HITMC community; I am a better marketer because of it.
Please share your favorite HITMC 2019 moments
If we didn’t happen to connect with you at this year’s conference, we still want to hear your favorite moment from HITMC 2019!
What was your moment of elevation, insight, pride or connection? Which insight hit you like a lightning strike? What comment had you laughing hours later? After all the session notes have been distributed and slide decks shared, after all the emails and social posts and hugs and handshakes and promises to see each other next year, what moment from HITMC 2019 will you still remember in five years?
Leave a comment and let us know. You are our people, and these are our moments.
Senior Copywriter Jeff Segal writes blogs and social content for several SN clients, while crusading tirelessly against the words provide, quality, strive and utilize.