Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Invest in Your Future: Segmentation Recommendations

With Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) looming, many organizations are starting to re-focus their efforts on their data, and segmenting it so that communications sent to contacts are what they are looking for. We are bombarded by email messaging, and at times, tune out from what organizations are trying to tell us. What’s sad is that they are likely missing information that they should know, and want to know, all because it has become too much.

Here are a few examples/recommendations of possible segmentation best practices that may help:

  • Communication types: Make a list of all types of information you are putting out there, and then identify if there are certain types of members (based on company type, job functionality, etc) who would most likely be interested in receiving it. 
  • Offer corporate memberships? Do you have the main contact only (i.e. the one who writes the cheque)? Or have you assessed them early and obtained other contact names? Not every contact within the corporation will be interested in the same information; from C-suite contacts, to product designers, they have different goals, and value different information. Identify who should be on your list based on your types of communication, and make an effort to obtain their contact information.
  • Offer industry and supplier memberships? Segment them. Supplier members may not be interested in all aspects of your organization. It’s a best practice to find out why they became a member, and keep them informed with information on what will keep them renewing. 
  • For organizations that offer special programs or information to select portions of your membership, do not send information to your entire database. Those who cannot access it, or will not qualify, will only get frustrated that they are getting excluded.

There are several ways to segment your members. A best practice is not to assume, get them to tell you. Here are a few ways to help gather the information:

  • Send a communication, other than an email, advising that your organization is in the process of segmenting membership in order to provide effective, streamlined communication. In this communication, tell them to expect an email inviting them to provide their preferences.
  • Next step? Send the email. Prepare a landing page with all of their options, and ask them to select the categories that best suit their needs. Make sure that the information transfers easily to your customer relationship management (CRM) system.  
  • Did you not get responses from everyone? Follow up with a phone campaign to get their preferences captured over the phone.

I fully realize that you will not get everyone’s preferences this way, but it’s a start. You can continue this effort throughout the year (at renewal time, while they are in the process of registering for a conference or event, etc). All of this effort should increase member satisfaction, engagement, and email open and click through rates. After all, keeping them happy will give you a better chance of keeping them renewing, right?

This post was provided by Meagan Rockett, who is the Director, Client Solutions with Greenfield Services Inc. and was recently featured in the recent CSAE Ottawa-Gatineau Executive.

Friday, 22 November 2013

Latest #CSAE Ottawa Gatineau Executive now available!

In this issue....

  • Ottawa Rocks!  See who has won some of the awards at the September 2013 CSAE National Conference & Showcase from the chapter.  Congrats everyone!
  • Our Chapter President, Susie Grynol, writes about the "New Now" in her Presidents Column
  • Check out our re-caps on the September Kick-Off at the Brookstreet Hotel.
  • Engaging Younger Generations is as hot a topic as ever - and the chapter had a panel discussion about this in September.  Check out the re-cap available if you were not able to attend.
  • Are you thriving or surviving in your current work situation?  Alan Kearns of CareerJoy discusses Generational Leadership.
  • View our most recent grads of the CAE Program - congrats to everyone!
  • Carleton University Launches its First Master's Program in Philanthropy and Non-Profit Leadership - get more info here.
  • Daniel Brunette spoke with us in October at our lunch on Successful Fundraising Strategies - read the re-cap if you missed the lunch
  • Meagan Rockett talks about member segmentation and Canada's Anti-Spam Legislation in the "Invest In Your Future" Article
  • Do you work in (or, are interested in) Marketing & Communications, in the association space?  Our MarCom group may be just the thing for you!  Check out the line-up for discussions this year.
  • In October, we also had a 1/2 day session on association tradeshows and non-dues revenue.  A great set of roundtable discussions, with a panel of experts too!  If you missed it, read the re-cap here

Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Social Media & Your Association Event

The importance of social media and promoting your event is obvious, and there are several examples of organizations using it very well to ensure that the right conversations are taking place.  However, there are still many trying to figure out how to keep the conversation going (if it even gets started in the first place).

Be Prepared:  Create a calendar of posts to generate interest and excitement. This can include ensure that your exhibitors and sponsors are recognized, putting out a call for volunteers, looking for (and announcing) speakers, determining what content to have in the sessions, etc.

No matter how many networks you use (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.) you need to create and maintain your unique following, which includes your members, exhibitors, sponsors, and speakers/presenters participating as well.  Explain the unique benefits of including themselves on the conversation.

Other tools:  Prepare to be low-tech as well as high-tech.  Technology has its challenges, so ensure that you have a backup plan for power shortages, the password for the WI-FI, etc.  To do this, ensure that you have a hard copy of the program printed ahead of time.  Ensure you know the twitter handles of the people you will need to mention, and note them down (which will avoid accidental mistakes).

Whether you use your smartphone, tablet, laptop, etc. make sure that you bring your chargers for everything.  Some conferences have charging stations, but you cannot count on it – so prepare for the inevitable – when your battery is low, and you have only gone through half the day!

Keep it going:  Measure people’s opinion on the content after the fact.  How did they find the session?  Was it of value?  How did they like the speaker?  Were they knowledgeable?

The adage of quality over quantity could not be truer for social media. It’s not about an “info dump”, but having a conversation. It’s not only about making information accessible on the day of, but engaging with people who want to participate long after the booths are down.

Monday, 11 November 2013

Been There, Done That: Lessons Learned

When the Roundtable PACE committee came together back in August we began discussing what options we could bring to the membership to enhance the learning experience at the roundtable luncheon coming up on November 21st at the Minto Suites Hotel. This is our third luncheon event and we hoped to switch things up a little bit from having a presenter introduce a topic and let the discussion flow from there.

As we began talking to one another, stories of our experiences started to emerge; we were bonding, sharing our “been there, done that” points of view and learning from one another. There came the idea that we would utilize case studies as the format to get the table discussions going.

We asked our moderators to prepare a real life case study and to:

  1. Describe the business situation and challenge
  2. Identify the options that were considered
  3. Justify the decision they took
  4. And share the lessons learned 

Here is what they came back with:

Table #1
Strategic Planning: How the Institute On Governance translated a loosely-formed organizational vision into a successful, solidly established “think tank”.
Moderator:  Tim Plumptre, Tim Plumptre & Associates

Table #2
Membership Growth, Retention and Engagement: How the CBA identified a new target market, their needs and evolved in order to stay relevant.
Moderators: Sean Kelly, Canadian Bar Association and Cindy Bisson, ACART Communications

Table #3
Technology: Event Apps - Why do I need an app? What the planner needs to know.
Moderators: Patricia Pearson, Brent Moore & Associates and Allan Isfan, Fave Quest

Table #4
Strategic Marketing: How this Canadian based Association was able to build attendance and reach a new audience after the game was already in play.
Moderator: Meagan Rockett, Greenfield Services

Table #5
Risk Management and Contingency Plans for Conferences: How the CLA/ALA Joint Conference survived the SARS epidemic and how the CLA Conference worked around a Labour Union strike. 
Moderator: Judy Green, Canadian Library Association (CLA)

Table #6
Social Media: How the CDHA built 8,222 likes on Facebook and have 443 people talking about this.
Moderator: Angie D’Aoust, Canadian Dental Hygienists Association (CDHA)

Table #7
Human Resources: The Next Generation of Association Members at ‘Your Credit Union’ – A Millennial Audit
Moderator: David Coletto, Abacus

Table #8
Strategic Planning: Hosting International Meetings and Conferences – How CALA hosted 65 countries at their International Joint Annual Meeting.
Moderator: Charlie Brimley, Canadian Association for Laboratory Accreditation Inc. (CALA)

Table #9
Volunteer Management: How the ACA preserved organizational knowledge from their retiring long-standing leaders and members. 
Moderator: Duncan Grant, The Association of Canadian Archivists (ACA)

Table #10
Fundraising: When faced with a financial reduction, how did the Canadian Aids Society identify a new fundraiser that would successfully raise funds, awareness and be unique.
Moderator: Monique Doolittle-Romas, Canadian AIDS Society

Table #11
Cloud Computing: How an industry association transitioned and engaged its membership abroad into working from the Cloud.
Moderator: Jill Austin, Microworks

Table #12
Financial Management: Uncertainty, cash flow issues and no financial credit - How a national association with $2M in revenue was able to turn themselves around and focus on strategic objectives with meaningful financial reports.  
Moderator: Richard MacNeill, OTUS Group

Table #13
Governance – Corporation Act: The new Canada Not-For-Profit Corporations Act means that all federally incorporated not-for-profit corporations must transition to the new Act before October 17, 2014 or be dissolved. Are you ready?
Moderator: Georges Lozano, AMCES

For more information on these topics and to register, please click here.