How to Leverage Your Association’s Super-Members

Smooth The Path

The trouble with association boards is they tend to be populated with super-members. Super-members are members who are so engaged, so seasoned, so advanced in the profession or industry they are not like most members. Don’t ask them to guess what new members need or want.

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The CEO’s Guide to Association Innovation

Association Adviser

When I say the word innovation to you, what feelings does this word evoke? In a recent research study association professionals reported that innovation is synonymous with risk, big expectations, large investments, long commitments and failure. At the same time, we are seeing that our professions and industries are being turned upside down by changing technology, regulations, public perception, member expectations, budgets and more. Innovative projects fall on a continuum.

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Whose Feedback Matters Most to the Future of the Association?

Smooth The Path

Related: Identify innovating members. We should value the members who value the association the most. Is the association providing enough value to long-time members? Member Experience Member Insights association change change management future focused member experience member feedback member insights riskThe post Whose Feedback Matters Most to the Future of the Association? appeared first on Smooth The Path.

Our Members are Self-Centered

Smooth The Path

Our members are self-centered. Our members have… no time. Only organizations that solve our member’s problems, speak their language, and understand them will get their time and attention. Can you stand in your member’s shoes and do this? Related: Member Engagement Research. Better member retention from frictionless experiences designed for your association. Our point of view is not our member’s point of view.

When Members Believe the Association is Their Cause

Smooth The Path

From the outside, this association is very much like many others; there are members, chapters, special interest groups, and conferences. When the association needed a new website a member lead the refresh. A team of members is putting together a new product plan.

Differentiating Between Member Feedback and Member Criticism

Smooth The Path

Each time you offer members something new you have a choice. You can listen to the feedback from those members who are all in. Member feedback helps the new change or product reach its fullest potential. What is your association’s take on member feedback? The post Differentiating Between Member Feedback and Member Criticism appeared first on Smooth The Path. They are trying their hardest to give you thoughtful, useful feedback.

One Thing We can do to Prepare for Change

Smooth The Path

Related: Members need association help when they face change or start something new. The award-winning process for association innovation. Did you know that member surveys can be risky? Association Strategy Member Research change innovation member insights member problems risk strategy technologyThe post One Thing We can do to Prepare for Change appeared first on Smooth The Path.

The Award-Winning Process for Association Innovation

Smooth The Path

When we are tired of the tension it may help to borrow the playbook from an innovative company. IDEO, the innovation experts, have a process that makes for a good example because it not only works but also because it has been extensively shared so we know the method behind the magic. For now this outside-in approach only cares about the end user or in our case our members. What are our members’ most pressing problems? Or small innovative events within bigger events.

Is it Day 1 or Day 2 for Associations?

Smooth The Path

True customer (member) obsession and high-velocity decision making are the most critical but also the most difficult for associations. Think about your members. Think about your best members. Not board members but regular members who are highly engaged. We can develop offerings members love. We can attract high-quality members with our improved marketing. Related: How to exponentially improve member engagement at any association.

A Cheaper, Faster Way to Conduct Your Member Listening Tour

Smooth The Path

Imagine what you can learn by listening to your members share their thoughts, ideas, goals, and problems. The post A Cheaper, Faster Way to Conduct Your Member Listening Tour appeared first on Smooth The Path. Association Innovation Member Research listening member insights member problems member relationship member research qualitative member research starting relationships

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. This is why younger members don’t join our association: Awareness – They don’t know about the association. Value – They know about the association and they know it is for them but they just don’t see the value of being a member.

Why We Might Be Interpreting Our Association’s Data All Wrong

Smooth The Path

Our assumptions about our members can be wrong. We see the data footprints members leave in their wake, the renewals, the ways they engaged, the content they read. The only way to overcome this bias is to find out what is driving our member’s actions, goals, fears, and challenges. It is not enough to look at the data and see what our members are doing. It is time to discover your members’ stories. Do you know that member surveys can be risky?

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. “I am upset because I can’t drill down and see the benchmarking data from the 15 companies just like mine, the association should have made this study more robust,” members say. We think, “man, we killed ourselves to get as many responses as we did, this member should go out and recruit more respondents like her.”

Members Who Share Their Opinions Expect Action (here is what we are going to do!)

Smooth The Path

Our members won’t want to give 45-minutes to hour of their time for an interview is a common worry among many association executives. But I find that members actually do. And there are two caveats: first, the association has to be so valuable or so important members want to give feedback and second, the members who actually want to give their feedback are almost always the best members. Members expect us to act on their insights.

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. One of the core staff values would be to be intensely member-focused. We would talk with members often, conduct listening tours, and interview them.

Turning Our Members’ Problems into Opportunities

Smooth The Path

Members want us to solve problems that they can’t solve for themselves – Greg Melia , Director of Membership for ASAE at MASAE’s 2015 mid-year conference. We solve the problems that nag our members, problems that no one else cared to solve or could solve. The trouble is, many associations are losing members because they are no longer solving problems that members can’t solve for themselves. The trick is to start thinking of members first.

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? In preparation for other strategic planning processes the association conducted quantitative member surveys but found the results were not all that actionable because there continued to be so many unanswered questions. Based on this input we outlined two goals for the research project: Understand member’s current challenges. Listening to members.

Association Brain Food Weekly: 6.13.16

Reid All About it

Hear how the National Association of Tax Professionals used Google Universal Analytics to uncover insights they previously only made assumptions about, and how the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association streamlined their business processes with Google Tag Manager. Find out with Jeff De Cagna, Chief Strategist and Founder of Principled Innovation. – Measuring: Using Digital Metrics to Gain Member Insight.

Association Brain Food Weekly: 6.6.16

Reid All About it

Learn how to apply event design thinking using the #EventCanvas, a practical visual language and innovation process to describe, challenge, and design high-stakes events. Join AENC affiliate members to discuss: How are you marketing your company and/or yourself? – Best Practices: Using Digital Metrics to Gain Member Insight.

Association Brain Food Weekly: 3.22.19

Reid All About it

Your new member onboarding shouldn’t just be show and tell , says Billhighway. They suggest working with your chapters on an onboarding plan that helps you learn about new members’ needs, introduce them to the chapter and association, and guide them onto the most relevant membership path. Tue 3/26 at 8:30 a.m.* – Improving Member Engagement (Coffee Talk – Alexandria VA). Your focus is on your members and it can be challenging to compete for their time.

3 Ways to Get Members to Read Your Marketing Communications

SocialFish

Same with your members they think much of what you send to them does not apply to them. Here’s why your members may not be responding to your marketing communications: Use their words. When I’m working with clients I’m often surprised by the difference between what the client calls things and what their members call things. Not using your member’s words sets you apart making trust that much harder. But member marketing is much harder now.

We Should Value Members Who Value the Association the Most

Smooth The Path

Here’s an unpopular view: association staff should focus most on those members who value the association the most. These companies define arch-types and use that arch-type when talking about new strategic, marketing or innovation plans. But here’s the problem, we don’t have the resources to serve every type of member with every type of problem, often competing problems, really well. Welcome everyone but partner with the best members.

How Are Associations Using Twitter?

SocialFish

While all of these things are important for our members to know perhaps pushing all of the time is not so engaging. Instead of just pushing messages through Twitter here are some other ways to use this social media channel that may help you serve your members. Build relationships with members, vendors and industry influencers. Use your feed to highlight member’s awards, member milestones and great work done by members.

The Marketing of Marketing is not Telling Us The Whole Story About Member Research

SocialFish

Technology promises to give us unprecedented access to our members’ hearts and minds but does it really deliver? When you first step into a marketing role at an organization with few member insights, start with the data. Perhaps you have the tools to segment your audience to figure out who the organization’s biggest champion is, or the biggest user, or most profitable member group. We may start to repel members instead of attracting them.

The Marketing of Marketing is not Telling Us The Whole Story About Member Research

SocialFish

Technology promises to give us unprecedented access to our members’ hearts and minds but does it really deliver? When you first step into a marketing role at an organization with few member insights, start with the data. Perhaps you have the tools to segment your audience to figure out who the organization’s biggest champion is, or the biggest user, or most profitable member group. We may start to repel members instead of attracting them.

Association Brain Food Weekly: 9.13.19

Reid All About it

What a member (or anyone) says they need isn’t always what they really need. At Association Success , Chris Beaman explains why you have to dig deeper and keep asking Why to fully understand how to meet member needs. Digital Strategies to Engage Members (Coffee Talks with Results Direct – Alexandria VA). Hear about the insights and campaign experience that have led to hundreds of viral crowdfunding campaigns. good data for every stage of the member lifecycle.

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