Top Questions Asked About the Association Value Trigger Point Concept

Smooth The Path

One of the best ways to engage members early is by ensuring they have contact with your Association’s Value Trigger Point. How do you identify your Association’s Value Trigger Point? Many times staff don’t know if their association has an Association Value Trigger Point (AVTP) or what it might be. In phone conversations, I ask 3-5 year members this question: when did you first realize the value of this association?

Overcoming the association value gap: part I

Principled Innovation

This post originally appeared on the Associations Now Leadership Blog on March 7, 2013. In a recent post , Associations Now blogger Joe Rominiecki shared what both he and I regard as a startling fact: 53 percent of associations surveyed in 2011 had raised their dues in the previous three years. To put it another way, during the most severe economic decline in most of our lifetimes, more than half of associations surveyed still moved forward with a dues increase.

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Overcoming the association value gap: part II

Principled Innovation

This post originally appeared on the Associations Now Leadership Blog on March 28, 2013. In Part I of this series earlier this month, I identified the association value gap as an underlying structural problem within membership-centric business models. Put simply, associations are unable to drive profitability solely by delivering on the membership value proposition and must find alternative ways to monetize membership to maintain their existing business models.

Overcoming the Barriers to Association Innovation

Smooth The Path

Innovation is a difficult strategy for any organization past the startup phase to adopt, and associations are no exception. When association executives talk about innovation, we talk about the possibility and how much more we can help members.

Overcoming the Association Value Gap: Part II

Associations Now

Building sustainable business models depends on association leaders adopting a 21st-century sensibility as they imagine and co-create new forms of value in collaboration with their stakeholder networks. The problem for associations is that the member market does not really exist.

I am Not a Fan of Most Membership Structure Change Projects

Smooth The Path

The association landscape has been slowly changing for at least the last decade. Associations with individual membership see the opportunity to reach more members with organizational membership. Navigating each association’s two-way trust street.

When to Make Innovation a Priority for Your Association

Smooth The Path

All of these member focused indicators should tell us when the value of our offerings is not quite valuable enough and when we should make innovation a priority. If not in our data, how do we know when it is time to make innovation a priority in our association?

Why You Might Want to Add an Online Summit to Your Association Innovation List

Smooth The Path

Which means that 70 to 90 percent of our members do not experience one of the top benefits the association has to offer. Instead, let’s talk about how we get a conference-like value to members who never attend. And Association Success is gearing up for SURGE Spring 2018.

Our Careers Are a Big Part of Our Identity

Smooth The Path

Navigating these challenging transitions is another way associations can help members. How can associations help? What are associations really selling? . Understand the three professional stages to improve the value.

How to Exponentially Improve Member Engagement at Any Association

Smooth The Path

At some associations, members do feel this way, and your members can feel like this too. The good news is size is not holding associations back. We become better and better at creating value and experiences they want. My sleep study illustrates the problem with association data.

Associations Please Help Fix Time-Poverty

Smooth The Path

From university presidents to CFOs, to fundraisers, to engineers, to financial planners, to association professionals, none of us have enough time. Being involved in an association usually takes time. But what if our association could give back time to our members?

Who is Solving the Member Engagement Problem?

Smooth The Path

”, an association CEO and big thinker in our industry asked me yesterday. Many indicators point to a member engagement problem for associations. But I do see some association professionals addressing the member engagement problem for their organization.

Every Professional Feels Very Alone Sometimes

Smooth The Path

Association Innovation Association Value alone belonging leader lonely member experience mentor new member new-to-the-profession sponsorMost professionals in most organizations feel alone some of the time. They are right; they are alone. They are the only person like them.

Mismatches Between New Strategies and Problems Happen at Associations

Smooth The Path

An association’s board had been talking about how young professionals were the least engaged of all the member segments. In fact, offering a free first year of membership has unintentionally created more problems for the association and its newest members.

The Hidden Problems in Membership Marketing That Are Stopping You

Smooth The Path

Related: Storytelling is the new association marketing. Member strategy, marketing and innovation are not… The post The Hidden Problems in Membership Marketing That Are Stopping You appeared first on Smooth The Path.

The 40 Year Old Association Problem

Smooth The Path

Some associations are busy solving the problem their members had 40 years ago. But the innovators in your industry or profession will want to solve the new challenges, and they will work on addressing these new problems with or without the association.

How to Get Members to Do What You Want Them to Do

Smooth The Path

Related: Potential members do not hear about associations anymore. The 40-year-old association problem. Association Value association innovation delivering value member value membership value new product development process perception of value value propositionHave you ever noticed that members often do not do what we think they should do?

Developing My Dream Association

Smooth The Path

If I were to build an association, I would pull the most significant insights from all of the research I have conducted. Here is what I would focus on as I created my dream association. One of the core staff values would be to be intensely member-focused.

Big is Good, but Small is Better for Associations

Smooth The Path

Huge associations have found that when you serve everyone, you end up helping no one. Recognizing the benefits they provided were too generic, these large associations divided their organization into smaller groups with each group serving a particular member type.

Who Are the Stephanies in Your Association?

Smooth The Path

Related: Identifying innovating members. The post Who Are the Stephanies in Your Association? Association Value Member Experience association strategy association value first impressions forward thinking member experience member value new members thoughful

Mini-Course for Association Professionals: The Optimization Trap Many Associations Face

Smooth The Path

Associations tend to lean toward optimizing. Learn how to avoid this trap in the newest mini-course for association professionals: If the embedded YouTube video is not working for you go directly to YouTube. Associations that only optimize are in danger of not being future focused.

Your Members Want Your Association to Do the Hard Work of Forecasting Trends

Smooth The Path

This leaves associations in a bind because predicting future trends is tricky. So what role should association’s play? What if we extend this framework to associations? Often, associations report on what the average member is doing or the processes of most members.

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Mind the Member Gap

Smooth The Path

When I talk to relatively new members there is almost always a 3-5 year gap between when the member started in the profession or industry and when they actually became a member of the association. Well, solve the value equation and the rest will take care of itself.

Case Study: In-depth Member Interviews Feed Association’s Strategic Plan

Smooth The Path

What else should the association do to support members during these extremely challenging times? This was the nagging question one association VP had. If you became the CEO of the association tomorrow what is the first thing you would focus on?

Most Associations Are not Solving the Problems of Long-Time Members

Smooth The Path

Members long in their career will rarely come to your association asking for help. They do need help, and they will find great value in whoever helps them. Related posts: Is the association providing enough value to long-time members?

Do Members Feel Like They are Coming Home?

Smooth The Path

Associations can reduce the anxiety caused by networking. Association Value Conference association innovation association strategy conference creative problem solving problem solving risky safeRelated: Making conference networking more inclusive.

Association Blunders Make Us Want to Stick Our Heads in The Sand

Smooth The Path

I could have been a politician, organization, group of people, CEO, or even an association. If you have ever been inside an association during a public blunder you likely saw that it was just thoughtlessness. How to set a new tone at your association.

Teaching Whole Life Skills to Our Members

Smooth The Path

In these conferences a how-to-rapidly-innovate session can live right next to a how-to-perform-radical-self-care session. Related posts: The 4 skills associations should be teaching. A big opportunity: associations can help members with emotional support.

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Common Trap for Association Professionals

Smooth The Path

” This happens all the time in association leadership because we are coming at everything with a different perspective than our members. ” “Every year my membership is becoming less of value,” thinks a member. He should be grateful.

Why Long-Time Members Are Reluctant to Leave Your Association

Smooth The Path

They say there’s a lack of value for them. The association is not covering topics they care about or the issues that apply to them at their level. They say the association is getting stale. They fondly recall the value they once received.

Industry Study Brings a New Way for Association Professionals to Think About Member Engagement

Smooth The Path

It was that members who engaged very early in their membership were more excited about the association than members who reported that “the association just grew on them.” These special associations have what I call an Association Value Trigger Point (AVTP).

People Like Me Join an Association Like This

Smooth The Path

The same goes with associations. Each association is for some professionals but not for everyone. In fact, the association is not for everyone in the profession. It is harder, but maybe more useful, to say this association is for the innovators.

Rethinking What It Means to Be a Member

Spark Consulting

If you’re tracking what the association values and not what your audiences value, your data is likely to return false positives in looking for triggers for behavior. Associations are “elective community,” not just a series of transactions.

Engagement: It’s Not About You

Spark Consulting

People talked about engagement being the core of the association value proposition. I might have missed something, but nearly all the talk about engagement I hear was about scoring, tracking, and rewarding what the association values. We value committee service, so we give it a high score. We value spending money with the association, so we give it a high score. value about their interactions with us.

Engagement: It's Not About You

Thanks For Playing

People talked about engagement being the core of the association value proposition. I might have missed something, but nearly all the talk about engagement I hear was about scoring, tracking, and rewarding what the association values. We value committee service, so we give it a high score. We value spending money with the association, so we give it a high score. value about their interactions with us. member engagement innovation membershi

Big Ideas for Association Professionals

Smooth The Path

An idea so big, I wish I could personally tell everyone in our association community. Last year, because of the Association Industry Innovation Study , I was consumed with the continuum of innovation. We talk a lot about value and rightfully so.

Is Your Association Providing a Quality Digital Experience?


Rob ’s in-depth session offered suggestions on how association management software (AMS) and content management system (CMS) integrations can improve your nonprofit’s online engagem e nt and brand awareness. . The post Is Your Association Providing a Quality Digital Experience?

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Building Buy-In for an Online Community at Your Association

Higher Logic

You don't have to be a hypnotist or a master of persuasion to build support for an online community among your association’s board and executive team. Instead, you need to align your new online community with the mission and priorities of your association's leadership.

2018 Building Associations Momentum Award Winners


The GrowthZone AMS 1st Annual Association Momentum Awards Competition for Construction Trades and Building Associations yielded extraordinary results, with entrants submitting details of their most inventive and forward-thinking programs.

The Hourglass Blog: Diagnosing the Problem

The Hourglass Blog

This is part of an on-going dialogue between Eric Lanke and Jeff De Cagna on the work of the WSAE Innovation Task Force and the status of innovation in the association community. For Jeff’s first post on why innovation is critical to the future of associations, go here.