What Really Worked in 2016?

Spark Consulting

Beth Brodovsky, who hosts the Driving Participation podcast (and if you haven’t checked it out yet, what are you waiting for?) recently asked a bunch of her former guests this insightful question for a year-end episode. Here’s my answer: One thing that really worked for my clients was talking to their members. I know that sounds obvious, but associations tend to – in my opinion – over-focus on surveying people to the detriment of other methods of learning about our audiences.

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29 Free Non-Profit Webinars for April 2016

Wild Apricot

expert-webinars free-webinars 2016 april webinars expert freeApril means spring, and what better way to celebrate spring than with free education? There is no better way! So, it's a good thing I've put together this super list of free educational webinars for nonprofits and associations.


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23 Free Nonprofit Webinars for October 2016

Wild Apricot

Lots of learning on volunteering this month, so if you’re looking for volunteer strategies, you’ve hit the jackpot of webinars! nonprofit webinar webinars

29 Free Nonprofit Webinars for November 2016

Wild Apricot

If your organization is struggling to fill events, looking for #givingtuesday tips, or building a corporate sponsorship strategy, this month’s free nonprofit webinars can give you a hand. november webinars nonprofit free

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24 Free Nonprofit Webinars for June 2016

Wild Apricot

Choose from among these 24 free webinars for June 2016. Looking to continue your non-profit education? We've got you covered. june free webinar

2016: An Association Blogging and Podcasting Odyssey

Spark Consulting

I’ve been blogging about association management since 2008 – and I was far from the first one into the pool. I remember participating in my first bloggercon at ASAE in a sunny plaza in San Diego in 2008, shortly after I’d launched Thanks For Playing, the precursor to the Spark blog, with about 30 other association professionals, sharing our thoughts about how to use this new platform to strengthen our industry and our community.

22 Free Nonprofit Webinars for July 2016

Wild Apricot

If your organization is struggling to engage millennials, one of the things you’ll learn from this month’s webinars is the best times of day to post your event social media messages and send emails

20 Free Nonprofit Webinars for August 2016

Wild Apricot

If you're organization is struggling to recruit volunteers, have you considered using social media to do the work for you? In one of this month's free nonprofit webinars, you'll learn how to recruit volunteers right from Facebook, Twitter, and even YouTube. august free webinar

36 Free Nonprofit Webinars for September 2016

Wild Apricot

If your organization is struggling to engage millennials, one of the things you’ll learn from this month’s webinars are 3 rules that will turn a new millennial member into a raving fan. webinars free september

12 Top Association Articles from 2016


Remember Cliffs Notes, the popular synopses of required reading and classic literature? For some of us, they were a go-to back in high school. They condense a tome like War and Peace into 25-30 pages, giving you the highlights along with a few symbolic references that high school English teachers eat up. Association Member Engagement Conference Management Social Media Tips

The 2016 Super Forum Community Expert Panel: Highlights

Higher Logic

We were honored to host four renowned community thought leaders at this year’s Super Forum. It was a vibrant discussion that included data versus passion in community, engagement as it relates to retention, the state of community management, and influencing community behavior. Here are some conversation highlights and insightful soundbites from the panelists: Vanessa DiMauro , CEO of Leader Networks. Rachel Happe , Co-Founder and Principal of The Community Roundtable.

24 Free Nonprofit Webinars for July 2016

Wild Apricot

If your organization is struggling to engage millennials, one of the things you’ll learn from this month’s webinars is the best times of day to post your event social media messages and send emails

CES 2016 Final Thoughts

Association Management

After a few days of walking the floor at CES , many things start to look alike. That’s because they are. There were dozens of quadcopter drones from different manufacturers. A sea of 4k televisions all with great pictures. And enough virtual reality glasses to make them stop being a novelty. In fact, at a conference known for introducting “wow” products, what seemed to be missing was true innovation. But Eureka Park—the startup area of CES —told a different story.

CES 2016 Report

Association Management

Yesterday I spent my day at the events that are held in advance of the floor opening for the Consumer Electronics Show—some research sessions and a keynote by the CEO of Intel. Some interesting things afoot for the world of technology: 1. Farewell to the upgrade cycle. I used to get a new PC every three years or so. Not because I wanted to spend the money, but because the feature set and need for more power warranted it.

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Six Social Media Trends Expected in 2016

Higher Logic

Social media continues to evolve, and if you want to leverage social media for your organization, you need to be aware of the current trends for 2016. Here’s a closer look at some of the top 2016 social media trends to watch throughout the year. However, 2016 is the year it will begin gaining some traction. According to The Motley Fool, live streaming is another big social media trend to watch in 2016.

18 Free Non-profit Webinars for May 2016

Wild Apricot

May means nicer weather and I know you want to go outside, but here are 18 great reasons to stay glued to your computer screen! nonprofit webinar free may


January Update: Getting Started with 2016

Wild Apricot

Can you believe that January is already over? January was a big month for us. We’ve confirmed a lot of our strategies to improve our software experience and already started acting on them. update january

What will 2016 bring for associations?

Aaron Wolowiec

From memberships to learning to partnerships, software and services provider Abila just released its predictions for associations in 2016. In fact, Abila predicts certification revenue will surpass membership revenue in 2016. As 2016 progresses, associations will increasingly use AMS for strategy – not just tactics. It’s a new year. New predictions. New trends. New goals. New successes.

Association Brain Food: Week of February 1, 2016

Reid All About it

The strong will survive, the smart will thrive. Even busy professionals must set time aside for reading, listening, and learning. Schedule it. Maybe 20 minutes a day, maybe an hour or two a week. You won’t evolve, and your organization won’t evolve, unless you’re regularly feeding your brain with new knowledge and ideas.

PREVIEW: Key Findings from the 2016 Community Benchmarking Study

Higher Logic

I recently previewed our 2016 Community Benchmarking Study, and the overarching theme is clear: effective community management can positively influence member behavior. The average EBS for the 2016 study is 79, up 19 points from 2015. Stay tuned for an interactive section and KPI worksheet in the 2016 Study – this will include a comprehensive list of our top KPIs with corresponding tasks and examples.

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12 Top Association Articles from 2016


So here goes – your summary of the best association articles on the web for 2016. The Association Industry’s Best Articles for 2016 Takeaway. Remember Cliffs Notes, the popular synopses of required reading and classic literature? For some of us, they were a go-to back in high school. They condense a tome like War and Peace into 25-30 pages, giving you the highlights along with a few symbolic references that high school English teachers eat up.

Focus in 2016

Robert M Barnes

2016 will be all about FOCUS. Doing less and doing it more deeply and meaningfully than ever before in an attempt to make an impact on things that matter. An impact that helps others make significant progress in their personal … Continue reading → A Dangerous Mind


The 2016 Nonprofit Benchmarks X Study is Here

Wild Apricot

This year's Benchmarks report is the most comprehensive yet and lets you know how nonprofits are stacking up on everything from email marketing to social media to donation campaigns. nten report mrx benchmar

Are Chapters Worth The Effort: 2016 Chapter Benchmarking Report


According the 2016 Chapter Benchmarking report , associations lean on chapters for member engagement, leadership development, membership. recruitment, marketing/communications and local resources – rating these elements as 'absolutely essential' to 'essential' roles. The rub comes in their ratings on effectiveness in those areas - all of which generated a gap between importance and effectiveness

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Experience Salt Lake City: You Can't Miss ASAE Annual 2016

Higher Logic

What You Can't Miss for ASAE Annual 2016. ASAE Annual is one of the biggest events we participate in every year, and we wouldn’t dream of missing it. It’s a great opportunity to join thousands of attendees to learn and collaborate on how to improve the association landscape. Check out the schedule of events – it’s chock-full of great sessions, guest speakers, vendors, parties and more. This year’s event is August 13-16 at the Salt Palace Convention Center.

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CMAD 2016: It’s the Year of Community Management

Higher Logic

The community management industry is making great strides and growing rapidly into 2016, thanks to innovative content and collaboration amongst community managers. We’ve been sharing our favorite resources and topics all month long, but here’s a quick wrap-up of our top CMAD posts: Our Top Four 2016 CMAD Themes. We'd also like to send a big (virtual) round of applause and congratulations to the CMAD 2016 Community Manager award winners.

The Top Customer Engagement Articles for the Week of February 28, 2016


The Socious Top Ten for the Week of February 28, 2016. Every week we aim to make your life easier by compiling the best customer community articles of last week right here on our blog. This week, our favorite articles focus on providing our readers with tips to increasing their customer engagement. Nominate an article, video, or blog post for next week’s Socious Top Ten by tweeting us at @SociousSoftware. Association Management Social Business Customer Engagement

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Website Accessibility at the 2016 ASAE Annual Meeting and Expo

Higher Logic

Have you finally caught up on email, sleep and the deluge of new networking opportunities from this year’s ASAE Annual Meeting and Expo? It’s one of the biggest association events we participate in every year - we wouldn’t dream of missing it. First - a few thank you's. We had a great time interacting with our customers, partners, and potential clients. Thank you for stopping by our booth to say hello (and play a little golf!).

Harnessing the web 2016 conference – early bird offer

Optimist Consulting

I am a supporter of Harnessing the web 2016 conference in October, the premier digital conference for the membership sector. About Harnessing the web 2016. Harnessing the web 2016 is the membership sector’s leading annual conference focused entirely on the web. The post Harnessing the web 2016 conference – early bird offer appeared first on Optimist Consulting.

2016 Benchmarking Study Reveals Association Communication Hurdles Remain

Association Adviser

While the 2016 study uncovered promising new trends, data revealed that associations face the same primary challenges that they faced in 2011, and the approach to tackling those challenges has not necessarily improved. Online career centers and Twitter jumped from ranking 13 and 14 in 2015 to tie for the seventh-most-valuable communication channel in 2016. The 2016 survey provided many more interesting points of interest to association executives.

Holiday Gift Guide 2016 (Association Edition)


Check out our 2016 holiday gift guide below! It seems like December just started, and yet Christmas is only two weeks away! Where did the month (and year) go?! Now we hate to bring it up, but…how’s your holiday shopping coming? If you still have a few (or more) gifts to grab, let us help! association management association leadership membership management Small Staff Chatter

The Four Writing Tics You Must Leave Behind in 2016

Higher Logic

Writing. We all need to do it -- in community postings, in email, and in the documents we create. Writing is like walking -- it’s so automatic that you don’t think about it. But you ought to. Because if you’re like most writers, you’re using extra words that make your documents and posts far less effective. In 30 years of business writing, I’ve identified four pernicious habits that are common to most writers -- and annoying to most readers.

What Do Your Customers Expect from You in 2016 & Beyond? A Guide Map


Your customers are logging into websites more frequently, signing up for new online services, and trying new apps every day. The well-documented consumerization of business product users is putting increasing pressure on companies. In many cases, companies can’t keep up with the evolving expectations of their customer base. Association Management Social Business Customer Engagement Customer Experience

The Best Customer Engagement Tips from the Week of February 21, 2016


The Socious Top Ten for the Week of February 21, 2016. Socious has some great news! Call it a late new year’s resolution if you will, but we have decided to bring back the “Socious Top Ten”. We know that you’re busy and that the internet is a big place, so we have done all of the heavy lifting (or should I say reading) for you and have collected some of the best advice from around the web and put it all in one spot! Do you know of a great article that should be featured?

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MemberClicks’ Year in Review: Highlights from 2016


Is it just us or did 2016 FLY by? In fact, here are some of our favorite moments and memories from 2016: association management small staff association membership management Small Staff ChatterWe can’t believe another year is almost gone. Either way, it was a remarkable year, and one we’d like to reflect on.

Customer Engagement Takes Center Stage at INBOUND 2016


“This is going to be very unusual advice from a guy who runs a sales and marketing software company, but take dollars from sales and marketing. Put it in products and services and customer delight.” – Brian Halligan, CEO and Founder of HubSpot. When Brian Halligan, one of the men widely credited with coining the term “inbound marketing” tells you to take resources away from marketing, you know there’s a major shift happening. Brian did just that last week at HubSpot’s INBOUND Conference.

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Community Takeaways We Loved from the State of Community Management 2016 Report

Higher Logic

Shared value is the name of the game in The Community Roundtable’s State of Community Management Report 2016 (SOCM 2016). Even though defining that shared value is so important for the community’s success, the SOCM 2016 found that only 40% of respondents said they actually did have a defined shared value for the organization and members. Here are three big takeaways from the SOCM 2016 for minding the gap and bringing everyone together: 1.

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Top Downloaded Membership Management Content of 2016


We were curious, so we checked our vault, and found the top downloaded content of 2016. If you follow our blog regularly, you probably know that we touch on a variety of topics - everything from remembering names at networking events to shopping for association management software. But do you ever wonder which topics resonate the most with people? Did you miss any of these?! association management membership management Small Staff Chatter

My Top 5 Blog Posts of 2016

Eric Lanke

As we end another year, here's a look back at the five posts on this blog that received the most page views in 2016. Stop Calling It Strategic Planning This has been on every year-end list since it was originally posted in January 2012, and keeps getting a ton of traffic, including as the page through which the highest number of people enter my site.

What’s Your Marketing Resolution for 2016?

Spark Consulting

We know it’s important, but we’re full of excuses for why we don’t do it (and no, by personalization, I don’t mean sending an email to “Dear Elizabeth” as opposed to “Dear Colleague”): we don’t have the data, our systems won’t support it, it takes too much time, our members respond to our “spray & pray” tactics so we don’t need to worry about it, we don’t know how… It’s 2016!