Sunday, April 29, 2012

7 Readings of the Week for Association Professionals

Here are some articles you and others on your association management team should consider reading and discussing. As you know, I believe we in associations can learn valuable lessons from others outside our nonprofit world. So, as always, please remember to substitute the word association for “company” or “business” or “marketer” in the articles to see how they might impact your association.

8 Core Beliefs of Extraordinary Bosses
From Geoffrey James in Inc. I interviewed some of the most successful CEOs in the world in order to discover their management secrets. I learned that the "best of the best" tend to share the following eight core beliefs.

  1. Business is an ecosystem, not a battlefield.
  2. A company is a community, not a machine.
  3. Management is service, not control.
  4. My employees are my peers, not my children.
  5. Motivation comes from vision, not from fear.
  6. Change equals growth, not pain.
  7. Technology offers empowerment, not automation.
  8. Work should be fun, not mere toil.
Career Coach: Advice for working with millennials
By Joyce E. A. Russell in the Washington Post. Millennials or Generation Yers — those born between 1980 and 2000 and currently 12 to 32 years old — are the largest generation since the baby boomers and they are expected to have a huge social and economic impact on the workplace. “They want a career and fun and a balanced life and to make an impact on the world,” said Liam Brown, chief operations officer at the hotel giant Marriott International. “They don’t want to give anything up, and they really want to do a lot of good things for the firm and the community.”

Gen Y Dissected: Six Types Of Millennials 
I’ve given a lot of presentations on dealing with the influx of Millennials in the work force or among association members and leaders. One of the big questions I get is “aren’t these generalizations?” Yes, based on research. Well, this piece by Sarah Mahoney in MediaPost News helps dig deeper. “Mountains of research can attest to what experts say Gen Y has in common, from passion for the environment to tech love. But new research from the Boston Consulting Group breaks this massive block of humanity, some 79 million strong in the U.S., into six distinct groups. And about 50% defy the stereotypes most marketers live by.” The six are: Hip-ennials (29%), Millennial Moms (22%), Anti-Millennials(16%), Gadget Gurus (13%), Clean and Green Millennials (10%) and Old School Millennials (10%). So, where do your members and potential members fall within these segments?

Agile Content Marketing: How to Grow an Audience that Grows Your Business
From Brian Clark of Entreproducer. You need to begin with the end (the result you want) in mind. This is where content marketing strategy fails … essentially when there isn’t a nexecutable strategy in place at all. Agile content marketing is the answer. Because no matter how wrong you get it at first, you can always make it right if you abide by this general philosophy. Once again, we can borrow methods from others that have been proven to work.

Webinars in 2012 - Where are They Going?
By Chris Urena, Director of Development at CommPartners, posted in
Webinars gained popularity in the early 1990’s when their primary purpose was to provide access to subject matter experts, hear a lecture, and have opportunities to ask questions. However, with such rapid progression in social media and collaborative learning, the webinar curriculum is in transition. Five essential modifications to accommodate the changes in 2012 are in this post.

How Asking “Why” Helps Us Get to Our Larger Story
By Robert Rose at the Content Marketing Institute. Our content marketing should be focused on delivering value to our audiences beyond the product or service we provide. It should ultimately answer the question of “why” our consumers care about us.

Membership Retention and Renewal Findings
By Tony Rossell in the Membership Marketing Blog. Findings from the 2012 Membership Marketing Benchmarking Report show a pretty consistent theme when it comes to membership renewals – renew members early and often. The average renewal rate for individual membership organizations this past year was 78% and the average renewal rate for trade or organizational memberships was 85%. Read the article to get more results.

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