By Published On: August 25, 2020

Highlights from the latest AMI conference

What happens when 12 marketing agencies get together during COVID-19? A Zoom meeting focused on the current state of business. And with so much happening in the world these days, the Agency Management Institute Synergy group had a lot to discuss—everything from industry news, to consumer behaviors, to how marketers have adapted to the new normal. What we learned was surprising in some ways and unsurprising in other ways. For more details, read the full article here.


Our staff has been taking advantage of the many online conferences and webinars to keep up-to-date on all the latest marketing news and trends. Some of the things we’ve learned this month include:

  • Consumers are increasingly looking to videos on YouTube to learn more about products they’re interested in purchasing. Marketers should consider adding this channel to their marketing strategy when appropriate.
  • Companies are collecting a myriad of rich customer data through various disconnected systems with no clear path for marketers to use it. The answer? A customer data platform that houses all that data and gives you the power to create better customer experiences, all from one place.
  • Promoted as a “new virtual event where you’ll learn to adapt and rise to today’s business challenges”, the Adobe Experience Makers Live conference was held at the end of July and featured keynote conversations with people like Dr. Brene Brown and Luvvie Ajayi Jones. A major theme underpinning much of the content around customer experience and relationships was the idea of empathy. Customer experiences based on empathy for your user base/audience/prospects/customers are going to be the most attractive and successful.
  • Megan participated in “Kick Covid to the Curb” – an inspiring and information-packed Agency Management Institute conference in July. The conference was targeted to agencies to help them flex with the changes that COVID-19 is creating in marketing, business and the agency world. The content focused on practical tips to help our clients navigate change by looking for opportunities and generating creative ways to use technology in the absence of face-to-face events.

Our coffee breaks have continued…virtually

For the past few years, the d.trio team has gotten together for a weekly coffee break. It’s been a fun way to get to know each other better and share a few laughs over a hot drink and snacks. Sometimes we’ll talk about work, but usually we get into things like movies, house projects, and whatever else is going on in our lives.

Of course, that all changed last March when most of us started working from home. But since we all recognized the value of staying in touch, we continued our weekly coffee breaks online.

At first, staring at each other was a little awkward. It didn’t feel the same as hanging out in person. But we soon discovered that if we planned a game or activity of some sort it would give our meetings a little more focus.

It’s unofficially been Mark’s job to come up with a weekly activity. He started out by organizing classics like trivia games, Two Truths and A Lie, and Would You Rather? But as the weeks and months have gone on, he’s had to get more creative to keep things fresh. Fortunately, being creative is one of our strengths at d.trio!

Want some ideas to spice up your own office video meetings? Here are some of the things we’ve tried:

Trivia games. Create a series of multiple-choice questions (it’s less intimidating than open-ended questions) around a theme (we’ve played “coffee trivia” and “Minnesota trivia”). Run through all the questions first and compare answers afterward. (Bragging rights to the winner!)

Never Have I Ever. This is a fun way to get to know your coworkers’ dark sides. Create a list of things they may or may not have done. (Don’t get too edgy with it, since it’s the workplace, after all.) Have everybody put up their hands, palms facing the computer screen. If anyone has done the thing you call out (i.e. cut class in high school, snuck into a movie theater, gone skinny-dipping), they put down a finger. Last person to put all their fingers down, wins.

Two Truths and a Lie. Have everyone prepare two truths and a lie about themselves in advance. Then take turns having everyone guess which of the three statements is the lie. Lots of fun!

Would You Rather? Come up with a list of “Would you rather?” questions and pose them to the group. Interesting discussions are guaranteed to follow.

Guess What’s in the Box. Have each person place an object of their choice into any kind of box. Each player takes a turn asking “yes” or “no” questions about what’s in each other’s boxes. Players keep asking questions as long as they get a “yes” answer. If they get a “no,” then the next person gets to guess.

Tell jokes. Have everybody come to the meeting with a half-dozen jokes and take turns telling them to the group. This is a great way to add some laughter (and a few groans) to your day.

Photo sharing. Ask each person to bring a few photos to show the group. When we did this, there were no rules. People brought travel photos, pet photos, pictures of themselves when they were kids, etc. It was just a fun way to learn more about each other while also being a good jumping-off place for sharing personal stories.

The Ad Slogan Game. Come up with a list of slogans for a wide range of brands. Ask the group if they can guess the brand based on the slogan.

Phone apps. There are tons of fun games that you can be play on your phone together during a video call. The two we’ve tried so far are “Psych!” and “Quiplash 2.” They each require a little creative thinking, but in a fun, low-pressure way.

The Logo Game. Zoom in on a very small part of a brand logo. Get close enough so the image is something pretty abstract. Then take a screen shot and have the group guess what logo the image belongs to.

Have any game suggestions of your own? Please let us know! We’re always on the hunt for new ideas!


Danette escaped work and the city by spending a fabulous week at a friend’s cabin on Lake Superior. A few times she even forgot there was a pandemic.

Mark continues to produce pandemic-related cartoons and is enjoying weekly workshops from Believer. And we’re so excited that his work was recently featured on Bored Panda

Tim and his family wanted to get outside and enjoy the beautiful weather and parks Minnesota has to offer. They decided to take the boys to Minnehaha Falls (pronounced mini-haha). After taking in the waterfall and a short hike, they had a nice picnic. Tim said the time outside was invigorating and helped him recharge.

About the Author: cat-tonic

Born of curiosity and enthusiasm, we’re a scrappy group of smart, passionate marketers who work hard and play hard. We show up every day and fight for our clients who are making the world a better place. We listen with curiosity, explore deeply, ask hard questions, and sometimes put forth ideas that might make you squirm. Because we believe the status quo is good for growing mold but not much else. The way we see it, change is the way forward and the magic happens when curiosity, math, science, instinct, and talent intersect.
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