We hear this term quite often – “out of the box” solution. It sounds extremely appealing and convenient. To have something handed over, without any up front tinkering, and work from “go” just as you need it to sounds awesome. While it is undeniably tempting from a hypothetical standpoint, you shouldn’t plan for success in hypotheticals. What you really want is to command as much control over what you’re investing in – so you get exactly what you need. It’s not realistic to expect that your pain points will be solved by a system that has not been influenced by your association’s input. A standardized solution designed to be general won’t cut it. You need specificity to empower your success and support the way your association does things.
Articles tagged with: Membership
There are only so many in-person events your association can plan, manage and host in a calendar year. Conferences, meet-and-greets, lunch-and-learns, seminars, annual general meetings and all the other kinds of meet-ups your association can facilitate are not just initiatives that can be thrown together. They take considerable time and effort to be executed in a meaningful way.
One of the most important initiatives your association can take on is the annual (or bi-annual) event or conference. The events your association hosts are an incredible opportunity to impress upon attendees the value that can be garnered by claiming membership to your community.
If you want your association to be sustainable and to continually grow (and, it goes without saying, you do), you need to make your collective a community. Professional associations that build an identity, as opposed to becoming a paper tiger, will be propelled by their membership instead of being weighed down by it.
It happens… Sometimes the AMS solution you currently have falls short in empowering your professional administrators to manage your membership, and not your members. Fortunately, if you’ve come to this realization, you’ve already taken your first positive step toward availing your association of this bump in the road – you’ve concluded that you’re not going to allow your administrators and members to languish in a system that doesn’t meet their needs.
This is an important question and one that you may want to think about posing when interviewing prospective AMS providers. There are many motivations you will most likely have for making the decision to invest in an association management system, but the reasons that govern them all is to improve your efficiency and make life easier. So, the solution you choose has to accomplish these initiatives or, the reality is, it will only serve as deadweight.
When you invest in and implement an association management system, you absolutely should expect to be able to live inside that system indefinitely – or, at the very least, for a long, long time. However, as justified as you are in feeling that you are entitled to a solution that solves your current needs and grows with you, that is not always how it turns out. Despite the time you spent researching a solution that fits and the effort put in to transition to the system, sometimes it just doesn’t work out.
Your association has a strong presence on the applicable social media platforms, you’re frequently drawing the right people to your website, the content you are presenting is concise and accurate, and everything you are doing is positively convincing prospects that they want to become full-fledged, card-carrying members. However, despite all of the things you are doing right to convert, something is tripping people up at the eleventh hour. This stumbling block could be the way your association requires interested parties to pay registration fees. If the payment process is too restrictive or unduly clunky and confusing, the prospect can be scared off. Once that happens, there can be no redemption. This final step to membership (signing up) must almost happen unconsciously or the prospect will be lost for good.
Your association management system can provide members with value in different forms. The sky is the limit on the type of resources you are able to house on your AMS. Educational content may be among some of the best resources you can make available to your members. Whether it is plain text or video content, e-learning can be extremely beneficial to those who make up your online community.
One of the greatest features of a comprehensive AMS, is its ability to put administrators in the driver’s seat of their membership. As your association grows, the number of members can become too much for administrators to manage in a meaningful way. Or, at the very least, they may not be able to manage members efficiently.