The Top Marketing Events and Networking Organizations in Portland

I moved to Portland from Phoenix, Arizona, a while back. As a new resident of Portland, one challenge I faced was building my professional network from scratch. All of my professional contacts and career connections were in Arizona, where I graduated from college and worked professionally in marketing for most of my career.

Luckily, Portland has dozens of great networking events for marketing professionals aspiring to learn from industry leaders and each other. Here’s a collection of organizations putting together regular networking events for marketers in Portland, plus the can’t-miss events that every local marketer should put on their calendar.


Digital marketing is constantly evolving, and the American Marketing Association is dedicated to helping marketers stay on the cutting edge. The local chapter in Portland hosts regular luncheons, happy hours, and programs to connect and educate local marketers. Plus, their AMA PDX Agency connects local marketers with nonprofit organizations in need of marketing services. These projects allow local pros the opportunity to give back, meet their peers in the industry, and hone their skills at the same time.


What if the person who could further your career was already looking for you? What if a room full of people knew the exact insight you sought? What if your knowledge could be someone else’s Eureka moment? Welcome to Magnet, where you can let your net… work. This Portland networking event creates relationships that connect ideas.


SEMpdx started out with an SEO/SEM focus, but has been hosting varied marketing events featuring regional experts for several years. If you want to make dozens of new connections quickly, attend their flagship events: the annual Summer Networking Party and the Holiday Networking Party. These networking events also give you the opportunity to connect with organizations like the Portland Business Alliance, Think NW, and more.

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Founded in 1906, ThinkNW (formerly Portland Advertising Federation) holds the title of the oldest advertising club in the United States. ThinkNW is a next-generation organization and community unifying Pacific Northwest advertising, marketing, and media professionals, students, and talent. Check out one of their panel events or agency-hosted happy hours. 

More Organizations That Host Marketing Events in Portland

There are also many incredible Portland professional organizations that aren’t primarily focused on marketing, but they host regular marketing events or are in industries adjacent to marketing (such as design, tech, nonprofit, PR, and entrepreneurship). Keep tabs on these organizations’ event calendars to meet new people and connect with leaders in the Portland marketing scene.

Can’t-Miss Portland Marketing Events

Creative Mornings

Start your morning with creative inspiration, professional networking, and industry insights. Creative Mornings is a free monthly breakfast lecture series for creative professionals. Each session starts with a short talk, followed by a Q&A and breakfast. This series was founded in NYC in 2008 and now has spread to 170 cities globally. The Portland chapter celebrates our city’s amazing talent and gives marketers a great opportunity to connect with creatives on a monthly basis.


The Engage Conference is hosted annually by the aforementioned SEMpdx. It covers every niche of search and social media marketing, from the basic fundamentals of keywords to cutting-edge tips and tricks for mobile optimization, link building, and digital marketing. Each session also includes extensive Q&A with the speakers and an extended period of time for networking. Plus, this conference is typically ⅓ of the cost of other industry conferences so you can attend even if you have a smaller budget for networking conferences.

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So, there are obviously a plethora of opportunities for marketers to connect with industry-specific events and networking organizations here in Portland. Don’t be overwhelmed by the options! Networking and making new connections can seem intimidating at first. Start simply, by finding one or two organizations that are most closely aligned with your interests. Attend their next networking event, and be open to meeting new people. Be patient. You’ll soon start to grow a new circle of colleagues and professional contacts that will enrich your marketing career in Portland.