Aaron Wolowiec

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Listen: Don’t just hear

Aaron Wolowiec

Jennifer Grau, president, Grau Interpersonal Communication. This month’s guest blog post is by Jennifer Grau , president of Grau Interpersonal Communication , who is a listening trainer, coach, facilitator, speaker and consultant. But something critically important is missing from this list: the kind of listening environment you cultivate. Most people are passive, lazy listeners.

The growth spurt continues for associations

Aaron Wolowiec

What keeps association leaders up at night? According to Marketing General Inc. ’s 2016 Membership Marketing Benchmarking Report , it’s issues such as balancing a limited budget, engaging younger members and understanding what members truly want, especially in terms of networking and professional development. The good news, though, is that associations continue to grow.

Join the #whatisengagement conversation

Aaron Wolowiec

Engagement. We know we want it. In most cases, we know we need it. But with the ambiguity surrounding what engagement really is, it’s challenging to develop and deploy strategies we’re confident will grow the participation, reach and value of our education programs. We’ll compile responses into a resource we will then share with you. It’s easy and fun (we promise)!

Survey says: Most of us are lifelong learners

Aaron Wolowiec

On the last day of school, I told my kids I wished I were still a student. explained “adulting” is hard, and they looked at me like I had five heads. Truth is, I love school. I’m a self-professed word nerd, but I also love learning about pretty much everything, which is probably why I’m determined to get my master’s degree one of these days. Even fewer learners are aware of digital badges.

Some must-dos for ASAE’s annual meeting

Aaron Wolowiec

Lowell Aplebaum. In anticipation of the ASAE Annual Meeting and Exposition , which will be held Aug. 13-16 in Salt Lake City, Utah, we’ll be providing some tips on how to maximize your experience. To start us off, Lowell Aplebaum shares his advice. Follow him on Twitter at @LowellMatthew. Do you have some tips to share? Email Kristen Parker at Kristen@eventgarde.com. Registration opens at 7 a.m.

Bonus content – Event Garde e-news – July edition

Aaron Wolowiec

Carla Kalogeridis. Q & A with Carla Kalogeridis , president, Arion Media Services. Follow her on Twitter at @CarlaKalo. Q: Learn: Let’s say you’re studying for a big exam. If I am the one approaching the person, I start with a big, warm smile and say something like, “I don’t think we’ve met…” and then ask simple questions to get him or her to open up a little.

Globalization isn’t a ‘one-size-fits-all’ strategy for associations

Aaron Wolowiec

According to the United Nations, in the year 2100 the world’s population will be 11.2 billion people. Not surprisingly, Africa and India account for much of that growth, meaning businesses will steadily expand into those regions. As such, we could see a booming global marketplace, which opens the door for associations. What does that mean for associations? Twitter is the most popular.).

Would Mother Earth approve of ‘green’ venues?

Aaron Wolowiec

On Friday, we’ll celebrate Mother Nature’s finest creations. Spring is finally here in Michigan and as robins chirp and flowers start to bloom, it’s the perfect time for Earth Day. Friday is Earth Day, so in anticipation of all things sustainability, let’s take a look at the Green Venue Report 2015 , produced by Greenview and Twirl Management. 87 percent have secure bike parking for staff.

Connecting for Maximum Event Success

Aaron Wolowiec

Anne Bonney. This month’s guest blog post is by Anne Bonney. She is a John Maxwell Team certified speaker, trainer and coach specializing in leadership and empowerment topics. Bonney Bonney has spent the last 20 years bringing this to leadership and educational roles with companies including Under Armour, Les Mills International, Town Sports International and The New England Aquarium.  .

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No more masses for association marketers

Aaron Wolowiec

As some of you may know, Event Garde sends a monthly e-newsletter. So every month, I jump into Constant Contact to look at stats. Admittedly, I’m a word nerd, but I find the stats and data fascinating. I get excited when the click and open rates increase. And I use those – based on the popularity of certain topics – to decide what to write the next month. Email marketers: Does this sound familiar?

Cut through communication clutter

Aaron Wolowiec

As a writer and professional communicator, nothing (O.K., well, not very much) is more frustrating than people who can’t communicate. Or even worse yet, companies. Inconsistent messaging drives me nuts. Rant over. But seriously…communication is a hard gig for most companies, especially with the advent of social media. Communication is everywhere. But let’s face it. At a glance from the report: 41.7

Start with the last first?

Aaron Wolowiec

Ethan Edwards. We’ve written about successful e-learning programs in the past and those of us in the industry often signing the praises of such modules. But from an instructional designer’s viewpoint, what’s the secret to creating a program that works? How can designers help students retain knowledge and then transfer that knowledge to their workplace? This may go against how many of us learn.

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10 Networking Apps For Event Attendees

Aaron Wolowiec

Daniel Mendelson, Bizzabo. This month’s guest post is by Daniel Mendelson of Bizzabo. It was originally posted on July 16. Editor’s Note: By now, you all know I’m a social media/technology addict. So, I was so excited to learn about these apps that I had to share with you! These could help your attendees have a more meaningful networking experience. Charlie : Have a meeting? Don’t stress!

Would Mother Earth approve of ‘green’ venues?

Aaron Wolowiec

On Friday, we’ll celebrate Mother Nature’s finest creations. Spring is finally here in Michigan and as robins chirp and flowers start to bloom, it’s the perfect time for Earth Day. Friday is Earth Day, so in anticipation of all things sustainability, let’s take a look at the Green Venue Report 2015 , produced by Greenview and Twirl Management. 87 percent have secure bike parking for staff.

Coming soon to association learning: gamified learning and microcredentials

Aaron Wolowiec

Jeff Cobb and Celisa Steele, co-founders of Tagoras. Tagoras recently released its much-anticipated 2016 Association Learning + Technology Report , which contains a wealth of information about associations’ efforts to incorporate technology into their educational programs and platforms. We know the educational landscape is changing as associations adapt to their members’ learning needs and habits.

Post-event fulfillment reports: Setting the stage for sponsor renewals

Aaron Wolowiec

Post-event fulfillment reports consistently rank at the top of sponsor lists in terms of the most valuable services provided by conference hosts. According to the 2012 IEG/Performance Research Sponsorship Decision-Makers Survey , fulfillment reports tied audience research as the most important service provided by conference hosts. So what is a post-event fulfillment report? Keep reports succinct.

Bonus content – Event Garde e-news – August edition

Aaron Wolowiec

Stephanie Wohlfert. Courtesy of Michigan Meetings + Events. Q & A with Stephanie Wohlfert , meetings coordinator, MSAE. Q: Learn: What’s one subject you’d like to learn more about? A: Nutrition Science – Throughout the last several years I’ve become more conscious about health and wellness and what my family and I eat daily. focus on eating non-processed foods without all the fillers and preservatives. know we are a lot busier in our personal and professional lives than ever before, but I’ll never get tired of physically attending a networking event to meet people in person.

Bonus Content – Event Garde e-news – February edition

Aaron Wolowiec

Elyse Kopietz, director of communications, marketing and events, Michigan Manufacturers Association. Q & A with Elyse Kopietz , director of communications, marketing and events, Michigan Manufacturers Association. Q:  It’s February…the month of love, candy hearts, chocolate and other sweet treats. find learning new things incredibly exciting.

Improving knowledge transfer in your organization in 3 stages

Aaron Wolowiec

Karla Gutierrez, marketing manager and digital strategist, Aura Interactiva. The following guest blog post is adapted from a recent blog post by Karla Gutierrez on SHIFT’s e-Learning blog. Learning transfer is challenging because it’s difficult to predict how each person will respond to a course. Before the training. 1) Carry out a thorough training needs analysis. During the training.

Good news foodies: Conference venues are listening

Aaron Wolowiec

At a conference dinner earlier this month, a bunch of us, hungry and tired, sat at the table joking that chicken was most likely on the menu. And it was. But we had salmon, too. And vegetables, rolls, rice, salad and dessert. Sounds about right for a conference, yes? It was straight out of Pinterest or my “Cooking Light” magazine. But more importantly: There were options.

The X, Y and Z of membership

Aaron Wolowiec

Sarah Sladek, founder of XYZ University. We’re in the middle of a generational alphabet soup, a “perfect storm” as Sarah Sladek, founder of consulting company XYZ University , calls it. You’ve probably heard of Generation X and Generation Y , but what about Generation Z ? As a Gen Xer, I’ve grown up listening to how our generation craves economic diversity and demands social justice. So now what?

Association e-learning: what you need to know

Aaron Wolowiec

Sarah Lugo, digital marketing coordinator for Digitec Interactive. This month’s guest blog post is by Sarah Lugo, digital marketing coordinator for Digitec Interactive. Follow her on Twitter. Associations are beginning to grow their education departments by bringing member education online. Want to get off to a good start with your association’s online education products? Keep it fresh.

Is it time for an event sponsorships makeover?

Aaron Wolowiec

Tara Ericson, group vice president at Naylor Association Solutions. This month’s guest blog post is by Tara Ericson, group vice president for Naylor Association Solutions , where she oversees group publishers and specialized industry market teams. It was originally published on Association Adviser. Do you have a three-tiered (platinum, gold, silver) event sponsorship offering? Keep it fresh.

Millennial-friendly meetings: Bring on the couches and big screens

Aaron Wolowiec

Google images of millennials and you’ll find young professionals connected to their smart phones and tablets. You might also find images of colorful workplaces and nontraditional desks. Maybe even a collaborative thinking space. Much to Baby Boomers’ chagrin, it’s a different world, especially since Gen Y now comprises the majority of the workforce. Enter the rise of hybrid meetings.

4 Event Metrics You Should Be Calculating

Aaron Wolowiec

This month’s guest post is by Courtenay Allen, a marketing specialist at Attend.com , which produces event management software. It was originally posted on the attend.com blog. Courtenay Allen, marketing specialist for Attend.com. You’ve set your event goals and planned every detail, but how do you know if you’ve been successful? Event Surveys. Attendee Demographics. Effective and Efficient.

No more masses for association marketers

Aaron Wolowiec

As some of you may know, Event Garde sends a monthly e-newsletter. So every month, I jump into Constant Contact to look at stats. Admittedly, I’m a word nerd, but I find the stats and data fascinating. I get excited when the click and open rates increase. And I use those – based on the popularity of certain topics – to decide what to write the next month. Email marketers: Does this sound familiar?

Bonus content – Event Garde e-news – June edition

Aaron Wolowiec

Shana Killips, sales manager, The James B. Henry Center for Executive Development. Q & A with Shana Killips, sales manager, The James B. Henry Center for Executive Development , Michigan State University. Q: Learn: What’s your favorite part about learning something new? A: The people and our relationships are what I enjoy the most about my job. Why limit yourself?

Straight from an intern’s mouth

Aaron Wolowiec

Editor’s Note: This week’s guest post is from Samantha Moore, meetings and membership coordinator for the American Bakers Association in Washington, D.C. Before working full time for the association, Moore was an intern. What can associations offer interns? She explains. Samantha Moore, meetings and membership coordinator for the American Bakers Association. RFP processes. Contract negotiation.

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What’s the state of association marketing?

Aaron Wolowiec

As many of you probably know by now, I’m a public relations fanatic. Not only is it my full-time profession, but I’m constantly soaking up stories about new trends, PR disasters, crisis communications and more. Years ago, PR (which used to be more focused on media relations) and marketing didn’t always mix well. Fast forward: The line is fuzzy – if it exists at all. Event marketing took the No.

Navigating Extreme Association Trends

Aaron Wolowiec

ASAE held its annual Great Ideas Conference in Orlando, FL last month. During that conference, Scott Oser and I had the pleasure of presenting a session titled, “Under Pressure: Navigating Extreme Association Trends.”. More than 50 association executives hailing from across the country attended our session. They are as follows: Membership is dead. The demise of face-to-face meetings. wants).

Bonus Content – Event Garde e-news – June edition

Aaron Wolowiec

Amanda Toy, associate director of sales, Greater Lansing Convention and Visitors Bureau. Q & A with Amanda Toy, associate director of sales, Greater Lansing Convention & Visitors Bureau. Q: It’s a beautiful summer day in Michigan. What would we most likely find you doing? . A: I hear it is supposed to be nice, mild weather this summer: my favorite! You Summer taste?

Community management is about strategy

Aaron Wolowiec

Although still relatively new, online communities are quickly becoming popular platforms for engagement, discussion and membership. Happe said communities are the most effective way to deliver learning and change – much better than social media platforms, which are inundated with advertisements. The Higher Logic report contains data from 339 community programs from a range of industries.

Celebrating two years

Aaron Wolowiec

Two years ago, Aaron Wolowiec had a vision. Strategic planning. Instructional design. Meeting management. They were all in his wheelhouse. But it was time for something new. And so, on Dec. 8, 2011, Grand Rapids-based Event Garde was born. Wolowiec, a wordsmith at heart, chose the name carefully thanks to a little help from The Image Shoppe. Event Garde:  A clever play on words?

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Vote for us for best meeting planning company!

Aaron Wolowiec

As you probably gathered from our recap of 2015 , it’s been a pretty awesome year for Event Garde! And it shows. Again this year, Event Garde has been nominated for the best meeting planning company for the Michigan Meetings + Events 2016 Best of Michigan Awards. We’d love your support, and ask that you vote for us! Click here to vote. Write-ins are an option. Voting closes Feb. 2. Metro Cars.

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3 E-learning Myths It’s Time to Put to Bed

Aaron Wolowiec

Jeff Cobb, co-founder of Tagoras Inc. This month’s guest blog post is by Jeff Cobb, co-founder of Tagoras and co-host of the annual Leading Learning Symposium , a high impact event for leaders in the business of lifelong learning, continuing education and professional development. It was originally published on the CommPartners blog. 13-14]”. online or classroom) matters relatively little.

Start with the last first?

Aaron Wolowiec

Ethan Edwards. We’ve written about successful e-learning programs in the past and those of us in the industry often singing the praises of such modules. But from an instructional designer’s viewpoint, what’s the secret to creating a program that works? How can designers help students retain knowledge and then transfer that knowledge to their workplace? This may go against how many of us learn.

Tips 33

Bonus content – Event Garde e-news – July edition

Aaron Wolowiec

Allison McClintick, CEO/leader development specialist, FlightLead Consulting. Q & A with Allison McClintick , CEO/leader development specialist, FlightLead Consulting. Q: Would you rather sky dive, bungee jump or climb to the top of the Golden Gate Bridge, and why? A: If the goal is to put myself into cardiac arrest, I would say all three! That would be incredible!