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ISAE Blog

Sarah Rosenberger

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3 Ways an ISAE Shared Interest Group Can Grow Your Career

Posted by Sarah Rosenberger on Feb 27, 2014 11:58:00 AM

Show of hands: When you were little, did you want to be an association professional when you grew up? In college, did you choose to major in association management?

For most of us in the association management field, the answer to both of those questions is no. Most association professionals say they “fell into” association management and never looked back. And while there are certainly skills from other fields that translate well into this profession, we all know that this line of work comes with its own unique challenges. The member-based organization dynamic, board governance, membership growth and retention, providing education, volunteer management,  developing new products and services, serving as the voice of an industry… the list goes on and on, and association professionals are charged with doing it all (and more) with very limited resources.

That’s where ISAE can help.

New in 2014, ISAE launched the Shared Interest Group (SIG) program. The concept is simple: Association professionals who have similar interests and/or responsibilities can come together to focus on what matters most to them. A full list of SIGs can be found here: http://www.isae.org/learn/shared-interest-groups/

Here are three ways an ISAE Shared Interest Group can grow your career:

  1.  Shared resources. Many association professionals do not have the luxury of working in large departments with multiple staff members tasked for the same goals. Most likely, you’re a membership department of one; an event planning department of one; a communication department of one. Joining a Shared Interest Group gives you access to a network of other professionals who do exactly what you do day in and day out. Want to grow membership? Join the Membership SIG and you’ll likely find someone who is willing to share what their association did, provide samples and help you evaluate your own membership plan.
  2. Sense of community. It’s easy to think that your association is too unique, or the challenges too rare, to ever be able to find someone outside your organization who would understand. By joining a SIG, you’ll find that all association professionals tend to face similar situations—and want to help each other succeed. This outside perspective can help provide clarity to your organization’s issues while giving you the support system you need to tackle these challenges.
  3. Learn something new. Even the most seasoned association management professionals can benefit from a SIG. The peer-to-peer networking provides an invaluable opportunity to learn from each other’s successes and failures. Any association that refuses to adapt to current changes will not grow. The same can be said for the association professional leading that organization.

The SIG program is truly one of the most beneficial programs ISAE offers association professionals—but you’ll only get what you give. By joining a SIG, you’ll be able to reaffirm what your organization is doing right, learn what you can do to improve, and have a support network to guide you along the way.

Join a SIG now: http://www.isae.org/learn/shared-interest-groups/ 

Author: Shelly Pfenninger, Vacation Rental Managers Association

*The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Indiana Society of Association Executives (ISAE).

About Shelly Pfenninger

Director of Communication, Vacation Rental Managers Association (VRMA)
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Topics: Carreer, Networking

From Killing the Sacred Zombie Cows to Engaging Members: Top 5 ISAE Webinars in 2013

Posted by Sarah Rosenberger on Feb 19, 2014 7:28:00 AM

This past year, the Indiana Society of Association Executives (ISAE), offered multiple webinars ranging from topics about evaluating member programs (Kill the Sacred Zombie Cows was my favorite), to knowing how to engage generations X, Y and Z (The Decision To Engage was another good one).  These programs were only a few of the many favorites in 2013.

So, if you found yourself lacking in the professional development category last year,  don’t fret.  There are multiple learning opportunities available right now that you can access at your own pace, on your own time. And even better, we have selected the top 5 rated webinars from last year for you:

  1. Kill the Sacred Zombie Cows
  2. Mastering Purpose, People, & Productivity
  3. Stop Workplace Drama
  4. The Decision to Engage: What Your Association Needs to Know about X, Y and Z
  5. Work it Out! Demystifying the Male/Female Workplace Dynamic

The top webinars each received an overall average ranking of at least 4 out of 5 and are available on-demand. Now, you might be thinking… “can I still earn education credits through these on-demand webinars?” The answer is YES! Whether you are preparing for the CAE exam, adding more hours to your renewal application or just simply looking for top notch education to grow your career, ISAE’s self-paced online catalog is the place to get it!

To learn more about ISAE’s online education, stocked with 60 on-demand programs alone, visit: http://www.isae.org/resources/online-education/

What was your favorite last year?

 

About Sarah Rosenberger

Sarah is a marketing and communication professional for Raybourn Group International (RGI), an Indianapolis based accredited Association Management Company (AMC) who manages over 15 national and international associations. Currently, Sarah serves as the Director of Sponsorship for the Indianapolis Social Media (IndySM) Executive Board in addition to her responsibilities as the Communication, Marketing and Membership Coordinator for the Indiana Society of Association Executives (ISAE). Sarah is also affiliated with the Indiana Junior Chamber (JCI Indianapolis), along with the American Marketing Association-Indiana Chapter. You can follow Sarah on twitter @SarahIndyGal.
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Topics: Association, Members

Marketing Time Management: Respecting Your Own Time and Your Marketing Pro’s Time

Posted by Sarah Rosenberger on Feb 13, 2014 7:25:00 AM

There are a couple of very good reasons you’ve got at least one marketing professional to help promote your association: that person is an expert in marketing, and they actually have time to implement marketing campaigns.  But just because you are delegating some elements of your association marketing to somebody else doesn’t mean that you no longer have to manage your own marketing time wisely.

There are two elements to time management for online marketing. First, you need to figure out how you are going to maximize your working relationship with your marketing colleagues.  Here are some tips for making your arrangement productive:

  • Schedule and Stick to Meetings – You should be getting together in person or taking part in a dedicated phone call on a consistent basis. These meetings are the best time to bring up new ideas, not when inspiration strikes you at 4AM and you decide to dash off a text message. (Don’t do that.) Instead, come prepared with questions, ideas and assignments. Start and end on time. Make sure you’re focused on having a meaningful conversation, not just a todo list.
  • Use Collaboration Software – It can be as simple as free tools like Google Docs or DropBox, or as fancy as a document management system.  Just avoid the endless barrage of emails and instead update the mutual, virtual whiteboard. That way, everyone can see project status without the frustration of interruptions—and everyone can focus on advancing your association, rather than dealing with communication challenges.
  • Give Positive and Negative Feedback  - Make sure that you are always ready to tell what you do like and what you don’t like. If all you offer is either praise or criticism, your words may fall on deaf ears. Provide a range!

Second, your marketing professional needs resources from you in order to do their job. Whether you are working with an outside firm or someone who is sitting in the next office, they need information about how best to promote your organization.

All marketing is about storytelling. No matter the format (whitepaper, blog post, video, podcast, etc.) our ability to tell stories has some constraints and some advantages. We general reply on the written word and simple images, but we also have the tremendous advantage of knowing something about our members. You can insert their name in every post. You can localize the email message to their city or cross reference the campaign to past purchases. You can segment messages by employer or membership type. You can tell the story that makes the most sense for the audience at hand.

These are the types of information your marketing professional needs, and what you should focus on when providing content ideas or general direction. If you pay attention to these parameters you can churn out suggestions at incredible speak.

That’s not to say that working fast is everything. Just like running a marathon, the practice and the training are what help you to become healthier. Like taking a trip, it’s about the journey–not the destination.  When you are generating content or working on strategy, try and think about the long term impact. Ensure you have a process to meet your quality standards and deadlines. For example, as I write this post, someone else will double-check my work for errors and typos, add images, and make final preparations to schedule this blog post. The content will also be automatically picked up for use in email marketing newsletters by ISAE. There may also be offline uses as well, such as printed mailers, e-books, audio content, or other resources. If you’re thinking ahead, you’re not just working fast—you are working smart as well.

It is these procedures, however, that make marketing effective. By leveraging our time and our resources intelligently, we can offer useful, practical and powerful information to customers. We can share our stories over and over again and build a reputation among those who want to do business with our organization. Marketing, in essence, is storytelling to an audience for the purpose of making the business relationship a meaningful one. Use your marketing time wisely, and show respect for the time that your marketing professional is devoting to your association.

Those two themes together will make all the difference in your marketing endeavors.

Author: Robby Slaughter, Principal-AccelaWork 

*The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Indiana Society of Association Executives (ISAE).

 

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Topics: Association, Marketing

A Look Back: Top 10 Blogs in 2013

Posted by Sarah Rosenberger on Feb 6, 2014 7:22:00 AM

As most of America reflects back on the top 10 super bowl ads from last week’s game (mine being the cheerios commercial), we can reflect back on a huge year for the association industry too. Here’s a look at the top 10 most accessed or shared blog posts published in 2013- the year of ISAE’s blog launch. 

 

#10 What Attendees Experienced at the ISAE 2013 Convention (Originally published 7/31/13)

#9   Re-think Your Annual Report (Originally published 11/6/13)

#8  How to Build a Great Volunteer Marketing Committee (Originally published 7/24/13)

#7  Crisis Planning in a Changing Communications Landscape (Originally published 6/12/13)

#6  Evolving the Strategic Plan Process: Part 1 – Assemble the Right People to Design the Purpose that

     Inspires Your Plan (Originally published 5/22/13)

#5  Announcing Your Existence with a Clearly Defined Value Proposition (Originally published 5/29/13)

#4  Who’s In Your Network … and Why? (Originally published 5/14/13)

#3  Scaling the Social Media Mountain: A Trade Association Viewpoint (Originally published 10/9/13)

#2 Are You Too Busy for Work + Life Balance? (Originally published 9/4/13)

#1  Your Association Doesn’t Use Video? Five Reasons You Should (Originally published 8/14/13)

 

About Sarah Rosenberger

Sarah is a marketing and communication professional for Raybourn Group International (RGI), an Indianapolis based accredited Association Management Company (AMC) who manages over 15 national and international associations. Currently, Sarah serves as the Director of Sponsorship for the Indianapolis Social Media (IndySM) Executive Board in addition to her responsibilities as the Communication, Marketing and Membership Coordinator for the Indiana Society of Association Executives (ISAE). Sarah is also affiliated with the Indiana Junior Chamber (JCI Indianapolis), along with the American Marketing Association-Indiana Chapter. You can follow Sarah on twitter @SarahIndyGal.
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Topics: Association, blog

Mobile Readiness: Current Trends and Technologies For Your Association

Posted by Sarah Rosenberger on Jan 29, 2014 7:20:00 AM

In order to effectively engage your members, one must incorporate the most current trends and technologies to their communication strategies. Among those current trends of 2014 is the growing use of mobile devices. Due to the several advancements in technology, the increase in mobile adoption has also increased the opportunity to utilize the mobile medium to reach audiences. Similarly, it has given associations a new means to connect with their members.

Mobile utilization is a great way to better serve your members through tools and services that work to meet the individual needs of members. For example, your association may leverage mobile technology for advocacy, education, member communication and engagement activities. 

ISAE member, Results at Hand Software, has developed an informative whitepaper on this topic titled Strategic Mobile Trends for Associations in 2014 and Beyond. Within the report, relevant mobile tools and trends are explained for associations to use and achieve effective engagement with their constituents. Three of these listed trends are stand-outs for action this year: responsive design, mobile apps, and event apps as a service.

Responsive Design


Responsive design refers to a site or apps’ ability to visually adapt to any screen size and orientation. With the diversity of user devices accessing the internet, responsive design is a must. By using this technology, instead of building separate experiences for each media type, one code base is built that responds to the device being used, offering an optimized experience.

Mobile Apps


Enhancing your website to accommodate mobile experiences is a great way to start getting involved with the mobile trend. However, don’t stop there! While that is an important foundation, it may not be enough to keep your members engaged. Nielsen Holdings reports that:

“Between July 2011 and July 2012, mobile web users grew at 82 percent… but mobile app users grew 85 percent. Further, by the beginning of 2013, people were spending over 80 percent of their mobile time using apps. Anyone limiting themselves to an in-browser mobile advertising model is finding its customer for just a fraction of their mobile-screen time” (Nielsen: Getting Started with Mobile: What Marketers Need to Know).

This concept can also be applied to associations or any organization seeking engagement with mobile users for an extended amount of their mobile-screen time. Mobile apps offer improved user engagement and are now often expected by mobile users. According to Compuware, 85% of users prefer mobile apps over mobile websites and are perceived as more convenient, faster, and easier to browse.

Event Apps as a Service


A common trend among associations is to utilize mobile applications to create guides for events, such as conferences. The “event as an app” model alleviates the need for resident mobile technology knowledge or resources on the part of the association. Additionally, the use of event apps reduces the printing costs for events and increase engagement, as attendees of an event can interact with the information most relevant to them. Communication between attendees can also be increased through the integration of social media, audience response polling, and surveying.

Take Away Points


Responsive design, mobile apps, and event apps as a service are all relevant mobile trends for associations. Tools like mobile and event apps are great resources for member engagement and communication while responsive design ensures easy mobile navigation for users.

To learn more about all of these useful mobile trends and to share your own plans, go towww.resultsathand.com/mobile2014.

So only one question remains: have you included mobile as a part of your 2014 member communication strategy?

*The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Indiana Society of Association Executives (ISAE).

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Topics: Mobile, Association

The Gridlock in Washington: Looking for a Brighter Tomorrow

Posted by Sarah Rosenberger on Jan 22, 2014 7:18:00 AM

If you’re not frustrated with gridlock in Washington, raise your hand. OK, that didn’t generate much arm movement. But how much is the lack of activity in our nation’s capital costing Americans? The San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank tries to provide some answers.

 It estimates an unemployment rate 1.3% lower at the end of 2012 if federal fiscal, regulatory and health care policies were more clear. That would translate to about two million more people earning a paycheck. The lower unemployment rate (6.1%) would be just slightly higher than the 20-year average before the Great Recession.

 In addition, many current part-time positions would likely be full-time jobs. In July 2013, 8.2 million people were employed part time, nearly twice as many as a decade ago.

 Immediate prospects don’t look much brighter. Spending authority to keep government operating runs out at the end of the month and the legal limit on borrowing will be hit in mid-October. More short-term deals instead of long-term solutions are expected.

 The bottom line from Kiplinger: “The economy will suffer until Washington sends much clearer signals. Growth will continue to pick up, but only slowly. And businesses won’t invest big in new hires or new plants and equipment until they can see a brighter tomorrow.”

Author: Tom Schuman, Indiana Chamber of Commerce

Interested in the local issues that may affect your association this year? ISAE’s upcoming legislative briefing and networking lunch is the perfect opportunity to hear from legislators on the current issues that may affect various groups at the local level. Find out mere here.

*The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Indiana Society of Association Executives (ISAE).

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Topics: Association, Carreer

[Press Release] Indiana Association Industry Celebrated at the Indiana Society of Association Executives’ Annual STAR Awards Event

Posted by Sarah Rosenberger on Jan 8, 2014 7:15:00 AM

Contact
srosenberger@isae.org
317-513-7231

 

 

Indianapolis- Over 230 association professionals and their guests from around the state gathered to celebrate the accomplishments of the association industry and its professionals at the Crane Bay Event Center for the Indiana Society of Association Executive’s 12th Annual STAR Awards event Dec.12.

The awards program was designed 12 years ago as the state’s only awards event celebrating the association industry and the individuals who help make the industry in Indiana a success.

The evening featured a silent auction, networking and dinner, followed by the highly acclaimed awards program where individuals, associations and industry partners were honored for their work throughout the year.

Along with recognizing excellence, the evening benefited the Autism Society of Indiana. Since 1998, the Autism Society of Indiana (ASI) has worked to raise awareness about autism, to promote early diagnosis and early intervention thereby helping people on the autism spectrum have the fullest and most successful journey possible. Attendees bid on over 50 items in the evening’s silent auction raising over $4,000 for the charitable organization.

The 2013 STAR Awards of Excellence were presented to:

Awards of Excellence Over $750,000 Annual Budget
Impactful Community Philanthropic Program: Indiana CPA Society
Innovative Marketing Campaign: Kiwanis International
Outstanding Convention: Vacation Rental Managers Association
Outstanding Government Affairs Program: Indiana Chamber of Commerce
Innovative Membership Program: Organization of American Historians
Outstanding Newsletter: Partnership for Philanthropic Giving
Outstanding Non-Dues Revenue Program: Indiana Bankers Association
Outstanding Individual Program or Event: The Arc of Indiana
Outstanding Association Website: Sigma Kappa Sorority
Outstanding Magazine: Kiwanis International

Awards of Excellence Under $750,000 Annual Budget
Innovative Marketing Campaign: Indiana Music Education Association
Outstanding Convention: Society for Nutrition Education & Behavior
Outstanding Government Affairs Program: Indiana Academy of Ophthalmology
Innovative Membership Program: MPI Indiana Chapter
Outstanding Newsletter: Corporate Housing Providers Association
Outstanding Non-Dues Revenue Program: Indiana Music Education Association
Outstanding Individual Program or Event: Top Notch of Indiana
Outstanding Association Website: Indiana Commercial Board of Realtors
Golden Shoestring: Indiana Construction Roundtable

Supplier Awards
Outstanding Supplier Website: Visit Fort Wayne
Supplier STAR Service: Visit South Bend Mishawaka
Superior Supplier Marketing: Bartha
Supplier Industry Motivation: SpinWeb

Individual Awards
Executive of the Year: Robert Riggs, CAE
Association Professional of the Year: Laura Wilson
Rising STAR of the Year: Mark Lewis
Supplier of Year: Carolyne Wallace
Supplier Company of the Year: Caesar’s Entertainment
Volunteer of the Year: Erin Erdmann

Twenty-six sponsors contributed to the success of the event. The 2013 sponsors and event partners included: Vist Evansville, Markey’s Rental & Staging, Stevens & Stevens, LLC, Visit Bloomington, Radisson Hotel at STAR Plaza, Horizon Convention Center, Excel Decorators Inc., VonLehman & Company, Renaissance Indianapolis North, Blue Chip Casino Hotel & Resort, Marriott Indianapolis East, Markey’s Exposition Services, Willow Marketing, Indiana Convention Center, Meeting Services Unlimited, Caesars Entertainment, Grand Wayne Convention Center, Visit South Bend Mishawaka, TelSpan Worldwide Conferencing, Visit Indy, National Expo, Hamilton County CVB, Crowne Plaza, Omni Severin, Seasons 52 and SB Downtown Convention District.

To view or download pictures from the event, please visit the ISAE Facebook gallery.

# # #

The Indiana Society of Association Executives exists to support and strengthen association professionals’ success and provide the state’s leading educational and networking events designed specifically for the needs of association executives.

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Topics: Association

The Recipe to Successful Organizational Management

Posted by Sarah Rosenberger on Jan 2, 2014 7:13:00 AM

Everything in your company runs off of data, but the numbers can’t stand alone-they need to be combined for specific purposes before you can make strategic decisions. Below are the pitfalls to data consumption and the remedies to turn your data into the “secret ingredient” for your business:

It’s critical that you make sense of your data – integrating applications, providing more in-depth reporting across platforms, and ultimately making information more available and more “intelligent” for your business. It’s all about getting information into your hands timely so you can make better, faster decisions.

Everything in your company runs off of data, but the numbers can’t stand alone-they need to be combined for specific purposes before you can make strategic decisions. Trends develop, that if not analyzed can leave insights unseen. Information – a general, but powerful term, is about turning data into useful decision points. Whether you are measuring performance, flushing out waste in a process or cost structure, or ultimately just looking for more effective insight into how a process, department, or function within your company is performing – you are in need of better “business intelligence”. Below are the pitfalls to data consumption and the remedies to turn your data into the “secret ingredient” for your business:

1. Like Ingredients, Data Can’t-And Shouldn’t-Stand Alone

Having a data source or a metric is like having a bottle of cinnamon: super critical for dozens of uses, but pretty awful when you take it on its own.

And business professionals understand that a single point of data can’t stand on its own; that’s why we all have dozens of data sources spitting out numbers, metrics, ad KPIs for departments throughout the company. Unfortunately, having all of these numbers residing strictly in their respective departments is much like keeping your spices in their bottles and never using them to season a meal.

Where am I going with this?

If you’re not looking at all your KPIs together in real time on an executive management platform, you’re flying blind.

2. Great Data/Ingredients Don’t Always Equal a Great Outcome

Remember that time you tried to make dinner and the fire department ended up outside your house? There’s no doubt that you bought the highest quality meat, but things can go south quickly if it’s not put together right.

When you’re using your data, the context and interpretation is everything. With very little effort, an employee can use a very expensive data source to give you doctored, late, or just plain incorrect data. You start using that data to put together objectives, and poof! Time to bring in the fire brigade.

3. Timing Is Everything

Without the right executive management platform, you’re probably getting delayed information and reacting to outdated issues. It’s like paying for a nice restaurant and getting whipped cream on your salad and creamy Italian dressing on your gelato – good stuff, wrong place.

4. The Recipe Matters

If you’re comparing numbers from different platforms that are not set up to measure the right metrics, you may be trying to reconcile apples and oranges. Do you know what an apple pie tastes like when apples are switched out for oranges? If you can picture what that would do to your next dinner party, then you’re starting to get the idea of what the wrong numbers can do to your business.

Author: Nick Smarrelli, GadellNet IT Consulting

*The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Indiana Society of Association Executives (ISAE).

About Nick Smarrelli

Nick Smarrelli is the COO and Owner of GadellNet IT Consulting Services. GadellNet's focus is on small organization (1-150 people) supporting their IT infrastructure, applications and strategy.
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Topics: Success

Miss Manners Says Put Your Device Away at Work

Posted by Sarah Rosenberger on Dec 26, 2013 7:10:00 AM

Emily Post, the famed 20th Century etiquette guru once said, “Good manners reflect something from inside – an innate sense of consideration for others and respect for self.”

While Post might not have seen cellphones, tablets or laptops coming, these handy-dandy technologies can pose etiquette problems in the workplace (and at lunch with friends and at home with your families – but we’re just going to focus on the workplace for now).

A survey from Robert Half Technology of over 2,300 chief information officers (CIOs) around the country found that 64% of CIOs said the increased use of mobile devices has led to more workplace rudeness over the last three years. That percentage has grown from 51% in 2010.

These technologies can help with productivity, but also serve as major distractions in meetings and face-to-face conversations.

Robert Half Technology offers four suggestions to avoid breaching etiquette at work:

Don’t surf while talking. It’s just rude to check your email or be on the Internet while in the midst of a conversation with someone.

Keep voicemails concise. Get to the point, already.

Make smart communication choices. Use the available technology to your advantage: Need a quick answer on something? Try an email, text or instant message. Just make sure to pick up the phone or walk down the hallway if you’ve got a long request or need to have a difficult conversation.

Avoid intense multitasking. Be present wherever you are. Tablets and laptops can make meetings more effective and efficient, but surfing the web or Tweeting during meetings is just a distraction for you and everyone else involved.

One more thing: the Emily Post Institute has a whole section on business etiquette, as well as a guide, “Manners in a Digital World, Living Well Online.” Check them out when you’ve got some free time at http://www.emilypost.com/.

Author: Charlee Beasor, Indiana Chamber of Commerce

*The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Indiana Society of Association Executives (ISAE).

 

About Charlee Beasor

Charlee Beasor is the communication/PR specialist at the Indiana Chamber of Commerce. She is a mom, journalist, casual golfer, singer (in cars and showers), optimist, grammar nerd, country girl and lover of coffee, chocolate and wine.
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Topics: Mobile, Carreer

How Can Our Association Optimize Our Event Marketing Media Plan?

Posted by Sarah Rosenberger on Dec 18, 2013 7:08:00 AM

An association’s media plan consists of several elements such as the association’s target audience, its goals for reach (how many people) and   frequency (how many times), target CPM analysis (what is the cost per impression of reaching the target audience with different vehicles such as   direct mail, print ads, web banners, etc.), and timing (spreading out the impressions or bunching them together). You might think of a marketing   calendar as the simplified result of some solid media planning. 
  
Many associations tend to use the same media plan year after year for their   association events’ marketing. Rather than constantly test new media plan   options, the association focuses its attention on the marketing message and the offerings at the event. That’s smart, as the marketing message and actual event programs are critical to the association’s success, but it overlooks the potential for making beneficial changes to the media plan.
  
Certainly, associations shouldn’t change the media plan just for the sake of   change, because doing so is just as likely to hurt as help the association event marketing. Instead, it’s important to take small steps. 
  
One option for the association is to create tests using subsets of the target   audience, making single-variable changes. 
  
Another option is to stay with the association’s “proven” media plan and optimize it by carefully collecting and analyzing data related to the plan, or by adding low-cost elements to the plan.
  
For example, consider the fact that some association prospects will attend the association convention with even the smallest reminder. These tend to be the association’s best members and non-member enthusiasts.
  
You can usually determine who these best association convention prospects are by looking at who has attended your event for several years in a row, and who has registered early in the pre-show registration period. If your association isn’t keeping attendance and registration date information in your database, these would be good things to begin tracking.
  
If you know who these best prospects are, you may be able to get them to register simply by sending them an email with a link to download the association convention registration brochure in pdf format. The savings in postage and printing that you generate from these best prospects can be used to increase reach and/or frequency among other association convention prospects. The net result is that your budget remains the same, but your marketing effect is increased.
  
Alternatively, rather than comb through data and build profiles of attendees, you could simply begin your association event marketing plan with an email/pdf option rather than a printed/mailed brochure. Those who register based on the email/pdf would not need to receive the printed brochure. Even if the cost savings for printing slightly fewer brochures is not substantial, the postage savings can add up quickly. Again, the savings can be reinvested in marketing to other prospects.
  
Association media plans are often overlooked when it comes to optimizing marketing for your events. While it’s not smart to make major changes without thorough testing, your association can safely make smaller changes in the media plan by analyzing and acting upon data, or making low-risk adjustments through the addition of low-cost lead elements in the plan.

Author: Dave Stevens, Stevens & Stevens LLC

*The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Indiana Society of Association Executives (ISAE).

About Dave Stevens

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Topics: Association, Marketing

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