Personalizing the Experience Economy

By Carly Reisner, Chief Operations Officer, American Pain Society and Brianna Johnson, Education Manager, American Pain Society

In the late 90s, Harvard Business Review noted that “The Experience Economy” is demonstrated when “a company intentionally uses services as the stage, and goods as props, to engage individual customers in a way that creates a memorable event.” Likening the Experience Economy to a performance is as effective a metaphor today as it was then because it reminds us that we need to create connection to our products and services to engage our customers.

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Earning Your CAE? Remember These Important Steps

By Kelly Kellermann, Content Marketing and Editorial Manager, with Bruce Hammond, CAE

For association professionals, the Certified Association Executive (CAE) credential is a mark of professional development. Earning your CAE can make a positive impact on your career path and showcase your commitment to the association profession. Several AMC executives use the knowledge they gained earning their CAE certification to guide and support our association partners.

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Personal Touch: How Much do Your Members Matter?

By Brendan Sugrue, Membership and Marketing Coordinator

Ad campaigns about customer service are all the rage right now. Who doesn’t love “Jake from State Farm”, the khaki-wearing night shift worker turned meme? Or what about Discover and their commercials about how they treat you like you treat you. Because “I don’t have time for machines,” according to one Discover customer.

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3 Steps to Smoother Onboarding of Incoming Presidents

By Danielle Leber, Managing Editor

As leader of the organization and chair of the board of directors, an association’s president has a unique responsibility to guide the actions of numerous volunteers to ensure they make decisions based on the association’s best interests. Most often, this person is well-prepared to act as an advocate for members following many successful years of service. Most often, this person also has extensive experience acting as a leader within his or her field, experience that proves invaluable to their role as president.

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Asking Team Why it Clicks Reveals Surprising Word

By Clay Baznik, Executive Director, Customer Strategy

What makes a happy and healthy team? I could tell you what I think, but maybe it makes more sense to go directly to an actual team that fits the description. I asked members of our creative team to share their thoughts, expecting to hear about a “hardworking yet fun atmosphere” and buzzwords like “accountability,” “flexibility,” and “recognition.”

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Scrum: Build Teamwork and Drive Results

By Vish Kalambur, Chief Information Officer

In 2015, Association Management Center (AMC) was faced with upgrading Personify, its association management software, and realized there was a problem: The upgrade would not solve a number of challenges; however, the organization expected the new version to magically do exactly that! There was a misalignment of business goals and project goals, and the project, as initially planned, would have left us with many of the same usability issues, such as:

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Construct. Deconstruct. Reconstruct.

By Liz Giannini, Senior Account Manager

Your cab drops you off in the middle of a changing Chicago neighborhood…Fulton Market; once a gritty meatpacking district, is being transformed into a tech and foodie hot spot. The glimpse of the Google office and the new Ace Hotel flash past your window and you are delivered into the urban Morgan Manufacturing space – the location of Association Forum’s June 28, 2017 Forum Forward conference event. With one step in the door, you’re already excited about what’s ahead…

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Innovative Models Fund Product Development – Win-Win for Association Clients

By Sue Farrell Stock, Executive Director, AMC Consulting Services and Susan Vogel, Senior Grants Manager

The American Pain Society’s (APS) beloved educational program Fundamentals of Pain was initially developed to educate and engage early career practitioners and researchers in the field of pain medicine in order to meet the growing need for research and practitioner support for those in pain. The Fundamentals program was held annually as a preconference to the association’s Annual Scientific Meeting and included education, mentoring, and networking components. In the beginning, it was 100% funded by a singular corporate funder.  However, after nearly a decade, the sponsor’s funding initiatives changed, and they decreased funding for the program. At the same time Fundamentals attendance slowly began to shrink. 

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Thank you for your thank you!

By Carly Reisner, Chief Operations Officer, American Pain Society

Being onsite for conference is the best, isn’t it? Sure, the hours are long, your legs are tired from schlepping your bags across a convention center, and you’re breathing recycled air for about a week, but it is nearly unrivaled in building connection to our work and members.

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Building Inclusivity into your Association and Events

By Jamal Turner, MJ MSA, Manager, Education and Diversity Initiatives

An inclusive environment promotes continual reflection, opportunities for growth, and helps individuals feel welcomed. Most importantly, participants are able to be themselves. Do your members feel a sense of inclusion within your association?

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The Effect of Laser Tag on Board Performance

By Dave Bergeson, PhD, CAE

There I was, standing face to face with a large, bemused group of boys about eight years old. I had just emerged from an idling bus along with seven other members of our board of directors. These kids were staring at us like we were aliens emerging from a space craft. Why the stares? Because our board of directors – composed of nurses in their 30s 40s 50s and 60s - had just converged at a laser tag facility and this horde of eight year olds was no doubt not accustomed to being booted out by a group of people the age of their parents or grandparents.   

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Real World Lessons on Customer Experience

By Bruce Hammond, CAE

My wife and I are in the market for a new patio on the back of our house. It’s our one big purchase for the year and it’s important to us that it’s done right. Like most people in this situation, we want to get some quotes and determine who can do the job best. We reached out to three local companies to come out and give us a quote, providing each with the same request and specs for the job.

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I just got elected to the board of directors. Now what?

By Peggy Reilly, Director, Governance & Operations, the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine

Expectations of board members in the association world are high. Upon election to the board, members are expected to have a solid understanding of the association’s mission, strategic plan goals and objectives, financial status, programs and services, and governance structure. In addition, board members bear a legal and fiduciary responsibility for the health and future of the association. These expectations can be daunting. As a member of the governance team at the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine (AAHPM) it is our job to ensure board members are informed and prepared for their roles so that they can participate fully on day one.

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How Picking Up the Phone Drives Member Retention

By Beth Zemach, Senior Manager, AMC Consulting Services

Old news: Membership retention in the current millennium is a key challenge for organizations, especially for those not connected with mandated licensures or certifications.  

Bad news: There is no magic bullet to overcome this challenge quickly. You need a loooong term strategy.

Good news: There are a few short term tools that may help slow the rate of loss and stem some of the decline. 

Let’s focus on the good news. 

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Competency-Based Board Selection and Difficult Conversations

By Anne Cordes, Strategy and Governance Consultant

In the past, Nominating Committees started their work a few months before elections began by identifying those who were next in line for the open positions. This process assumed that the most qualified candidates for the governing board were those who had worked their way up through the ranks of committees and participated in other volunteer opportunities.

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Ramp Up Your Twitter Engagement: 5 Ways to Drive Event Social Traffic

By Allison Lundberg, Manager, Marketing and Communications, American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine

Social media has taken over our lives. It seems as though a new social network pops up each month, giving us one more thing to check up on each day. Associations are digging through social networks to study our members, find where their interests lie, and determine where our organization should target our efforts.

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Extra! Extra! Read All About APHON!

By Danielle Desjardins, Associate Managing Editor

If you’re one of the millions of Americans who read USA Today, you probably noticed an extra-special source featured in the March 31–April 2 weekend edition: Association of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Nursing (APHON) President Kathleen Ruccione, PhD. Her piece, “Nurses Create a New Paradigm of Cancer Care,” detailed the role of nurses in health care—and of oncology nurses specifically in the treatment of patients with cancer, helping readers understand the impact of these integral members of the medical team and the future of cancer care.

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Grassroots Movements: How Your Association Should Get Involved

By Jordan Wildermuth, MSW, Health Policy & Advocacy Manager

Regardless of political affiliation, the 2016 election played on the heartstrings of the American people. These emotions have given rise to several grassroots political movements, such as the Women’s March on Washington and those surrounding immigration and healthcare issues. With thousands of people participating in these movements across the country, as associations we must at least ask ourselves the question of whether or not our association should be involved with those movements that impact our members. 

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Innovative Microvolunteerism Encourages Member Engagement

By AMC

Finding new and exciting ways to engage members and inspire loyalty is the secret sauce for successful associations. Getting creative about the types of engagement opportunities—everything from leadership roles on the board to a few minutes of social networking on behalf of the association—allows organizations to reach members willing able to help despite limited availability. Associations everywhere are embracing microvolunteering as a means to engaging folks with the least amount of time to give, but a desire to contribute. And the concept is taking off! So much so that this Saturday, April 15, the U.S. celebrates National Mircovolunteering Day for the 4th year in a row.

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Five Reasons to Choose a Career in Association Management

By Karen Kramer, Executive Director of Human Resources

If you’re like most people, you likely didn’t learn about the association industry in undergrad. In fact, you may not know much about it today. But the truth is there’s a whole world of rewarding work in the nonprofit space, focused on helping organizations work toward the greater good.

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AAHPM Highlights  Conference through Daily Video

By Allison Lundberg, Marketing Manager, American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine

As of this year, experts report as much as 74% of online traffic consists of video content. In our daily lives, we see countless videos on Facebook, in emails, and even on websites. According to a study done by Insivia, viewers retain 95% of a message when they watch it in a video compared to only 10% when reading it in text. In the association industry specifically, video communication is still considered a growing trend helping more organizations connect with members and prospective members like never before.  

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3 Membership Lessons from a Kindergarten Basketball Coach

By Bruce Hammond, CAE

My guess is you’re asking one of two questions right now… “What were you thinking when agreeing to coach kindergarten basketball?” or “What could that experience possibly teach you about associations?” Believe me, as this post formed in my mind, I asked myself the same two questions and what I’ve found is, kindergarten basketball coaching and association membership are definitely related.

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Virtual Advocacy = Real-Life Results

By Danielle DesJardins, Associate Managing Editor

One of an association’s most important responsibilities is to act as an advocate for its field. That’s why finding new and innovative ways to engage membership and communicate the needs of the industry to lawmakers and regulators is an integral part of operations for our clients.

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Associations and the Affordable Care Act (ACA)

By Jordan Wildermuth MSW, Health Policy & Advocacy Manager

The quote that best defines the current state of the healthcare debate came in a meeting with the nation’s governors at which President Trump exclaimed, “Nobody knew healthcare could be so complicated."  Earlier this month, the president delivered his remarks to a joint session of Congress where many were anxiously awaiting directives on how to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

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ASPHO Benefits Members with Successful Mentorship Program

By Carly Mangus, Content Marketing Associate

The mentorship program for members of the American Society of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology (ASPHO) began in early 2013 as an effort by the society’s professional development committee to engage members and provide a resource to early-career members on a variety of issues. Because of the complexity of the pediatric hematology/oncology profession, the committee created a mentoring system to customize the experience and serve member needs.

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Unlocking the Mystery of Meaningful Metrics

By June Pinyo, MA, Content Strategist, AMC Creative Media Services

One of the biggest challenges in the association space can be that, as staff, our business goals and daily tasks mirror those of the corporate world, only without the corporate-sized budgets and resource pools to help us get them accomplished.

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Event Planning: Why You Should Say Yes to that Last-Minute Addition

By Brendan Sugrue, NANN Marketing and Membership Coordinator

Picture this: There are 3 weeks until you leave for your annual meeting. Your schedule is finalized, the keynotes and speakers are accounted for, your marketing campaigns are starting to wrap up, and your staff is now shifting into the “hosting” phase of conference. But then you receive a phone call from a game-changing potential speaker.

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6 Signs Your Association May Need Consulting Expertise

By Susan Farrell Stock, Executive Director, AMC Consulting Services

Regardless of the size or focus of your association, you’ve likely experienced a situation in which you didn’t have the expertise required to tackle a goal in the most effective way. Eventually, most of us encounter situations that could benefit from professional consulting expertise. But how do you know when your association has reached that point? Here are six signs to look for that indicate bringing in external consulting expertise might be right for you:

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Infographic: Defining Transparency in Association Governance

By Kelly Kellermann, Managing Editor, Creative Media Services

How should association leaders respond to member requests for more openness, communication, and accountability from their board of directors? This is the question AMC governance and strategy consultant Anne Cordes and AMC principal Mark Engle, along with Jed R. Mandel, Esq, discussed in their 2016 article on the role of transparency in association governance. While there are several benefits from the policies and practices called for in the name of transparency, it can also do harm when applied without regard for board privacy.

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#Success with Social Media

By Danielle Desjardins, Associate Managing Editor

It’s no secret that social media has taken over the lives of millions—and our many association members are no exception! That’s why AMC clients use this low-cost, high-impact advertising and engagement tool to its fullest with innovative initiatives that truly are worth Tweeting about.

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5 Reasons for Associations to be Optimistic about the New Administration

By Jordan Wildermuth, MSW, Health Policy & Advocacy Manager

As the season of holiday gatherings winds down, I am sure that on more than one occasion a dinner was interrupted by unsolicited political banter. Around the association table, I would like to offer my gift of five reasons to be optimistic for the 115th Congress and the new presidential administration.

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Time to Make our Association New Year’s Resolutions

By Bruce Hammond, CAE

It’s that time of year again – time to light the menorah, decorate the tree, and celebrate the end of what was hopefully a fantastic year! It’s also the time when many people make resolutions for the coming year and plan how they’re going to do things differently to make it even better than the one before.

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Walking to a New Beat: Don’t Let Historical Conference Offerings Hold You Back

By Brendan Sugrue, NANN Marketing and Membership Coordinator

We all fall into the same trap. “This is what we’ve always done,” we say. These are dangerous words for associations. They lead us to complacency and we risk losing our ability to feel fresh to attendees. The National Association of Neonatal Nurses (NANN) recently ran into the same issue – and decided to approach it head on.

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 Ask the Management Team: What books have made a difference in your career?

By AMC

600,000 to 1,000,000.

That’s how many business books are published each year in the U.S. alone, according to a recent Forbes article. How in the world do you know which ones are worth your time?

Queue AMC’s Management Team members, who took the time to share their favorite leadership and business books and articles. If you’re looking for career-impacting reads, you’re in the right place! AMC asked:

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SEO, Marketing and Mohawks: 5 Takeaways from MozCon

By June Pinyo, MA, Content Strategist, AMC Creative Media Services

I’ll be honest. Conferences cause me great anxiety. Working for an association management company has provided me with an “out” in that I’m typically working at the there is a collection of coworkers, familiar faces with whom I’ve some sort of established relationship.

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Four Reasons Your Association Should Embrace Social

By Molly Anderson, NANN Senior Manager, Marketing and Membership

All good content marketers – corporate and nonprofit alike—dream of elusive viral posts and skyrocketing social growth. But how do you get there? How do you find and engage your audience and better yet, elicit likes, shares, and retweets beyond your wildest dreams?

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5 Steps to Special Interest Groups Revitalization

By Taylor Thomas and Amanda Duski, AMC Meetings Assistants

The association world is constantly changing and it’s key to make sure each segment of your association continues to expand and adjust with the current market climate. Special Interest Groups (SIGs) are an important part of any association, and it is essential to revitalize SIG meetings that have become stale over time. The Administrator/Coordinator SIG at Association Management Center recently went through this process and, by using the steps below, had amazing results. The SIG boosted attendance by 30 percent, had increased member engagement, received tons of positive feedback, and had much happier members overall. Consider the following to revamp your SIG today:

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Do This, Not That: Website Edition

By Monica Moore, Senior Web Manager

Better Solutions for Common Web Problems

There are a variety of ways to complete a task on the Web, but some solutions are better than others. While looking at items that are part of a typical Web update routine, I listed below some common web problems, possible solutions, and then much better solutions. Because there are so many ways to address items on a website, these certainly aren’t all the possible solutions, nor are all of the “poor solutions” always incorrect. The goal for any website is to keep things clean, consistent, and engaging. The “better solutions” listed below are recommendations with this intent in mind.

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Who Is Us?

By Bruce Hammond

When reading Seth Godin’s blog post from back in January, Who Is Us?, I got excited. In only four sentences, he spoke volumes about numerous issues associations have had for what seems like forever without ever mentioning our industry.

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How Do I Get Started in Video Marketing?

By Carly Mangus

Quick Tips for Video Preproduction Part 1

You’ve made the decision to start making videos, and now comes the scary part: where do you start?

Right now, the world looks like your oyster. You could go so many ways and do so many things in your new medium. The sheer number of possibilities can make beginning this process seem very daunting. Done properly, video marketing can add personality to your marketing strategy and grow a valuable connection to your audience, as you read in our previous post on video marketing. Before you begin, it’s necessary to narrow your focus by answering a few questions.

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Association Management Center’s Ask The Management Team Question of the Quarter

By AMC

It’s time for the next installment of Associational Management Center’s Ask the Management Team question series. This quarter, we reached out with a question about something everyone can relate to: BUDGET! But instead of focusing on the challenges related to limited budget, we wondered what our executives would do if they had more money to spend. We asked AMC leaders to answer the following question:

If your budget increased by $200,000 for the year, with the expectation all of it must be spent in 2016, where would you invest to make the biggest impact? Why?

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Why Video Content is Important for Your Association

By Carly Mangus, Assistant Editor and Resident Video Editor, Creative Media Services

 

It’s easy to feel lost when it comes to video marketing, especially when what first comes to mind is big-budget commercials produced by large companies. At first glance it looks daunting, but video is more accessible than ever and can be done on a budget.

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Five Considerations When Rebranding Your Association

By Louise Ristau and Liz Giannini, Awards and Personalization Association

Rebranding has been a hot topic in the association community for years, and 2015 is no exception. Associations regularly have been seeking to better understand tips and tricks for effectively rebranding their organizations. Here at AMC, our client, the Awards and Personalization Association recently went through the process and we thought we’d share our experiences with you.

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