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MC Talks
The MemberClicks Blog

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Which of These Volunteer Trends Will You Try This Year?

Asking for volunteers and really getting the most out of their activity can be a struggle. Everyone feels the “there are only so many hours in a day” sentiment, your members included. It can be difficult for them to commit to yet another regularly scheduled activity - let alone give it their all when it comes after a crazy day at the office.

It becomes quite the conundrum when your association relies on volunteers to provide certain benefits, or even to function. If you can identify with these difficulties, it might be time to rethink your association’s volunteer structure. Take a look at these trends and think about how they could fit into (or even replace!) the ways you currently drum up volunteers:

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The Most Underrated Soft Skills You Need to Succeed

With March Madness in full swing, it starts to make you think: How can you stand apart from the crowd? It’s a jungle out there, and you need to compete to make sure you (AND your nonprofit) stay ahead of the pack. What better way than to take a quick look at how you can leverage your professional skill sets!

When it comes to work experience, it’s traditional to split up these proficiencies into two categories: hard skills and soft skills. A hard skill is typically defined as technical knowledge that is teachable and easy to measure, such as computer programing or accounting. A soft skill, often known as “people skills,” comes down to how you deal with personal interactions, such as clear communication or time management. Today, we’re going to focus on some of the key skills you should have in your soft skills “toolbox.” Check them out below!

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Moving Your Organization to a Tiered Dues Structure: Getting Started

Chambers and associations are a vital source of connection, but (just like many other industries) they’ve been forced to find ways to stay relevant in the age of the Internet. It’s become very easy for members to find each other and connect on their own time, use online tools to easily generate leads and market themselves, and access resources to learn more about their industry and how to advocate for it.

While organizational membership is still important, all benefits simply don’t apply to all members anymore: That’s where tiered dues comes in. A tiered dues structure virtually eliminates any loss of membership value, because you’re asking members to invest in a package based on value. Inviting members to have more control over their benefits ensures they will get the value they want out of their membership, which in turn will increase engagement, retention, and overall satisfaction.

I know - it sounds daunting, but the process for implementing a tiered dues structure can be totally painless with a little guidance and planning. And with any change, you’ll want to do some homework. Here are some “assignments” to get you started:

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The Ultimate Post-Event Checklist for Association Pros

‘Tis the season for event planning! And whether your event is in the spring, summer, or even early fall, chances are, you’ve already started prepping.

But as much time as you spend on event-related activities prior to the actual event, how much time do you spend on post-event activities, really driving it home?

You’ve heard it before, but we’ll say it again: The event isn’t over when people leave the room. To really ensure success - both with your current event and those in the future - several “next steps” have to be completed. In fact, here’s a little checklist:

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Mark Your Calendars! March Events & Training Opportunities

We know, we know - it’s been March for a week (and a few days). Thankfully, just about everything we’re up to this month falls in the same week. You know what they say: Another month, another busy schedule of trade shows and training.

And whether it’s online or in person, you can be sure that we’re looking forward to giving our customers some love! Check out our schedule below and be sure to let us know where we’ll be seeing you!

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Creating a Social Media Content Calendar at Your Association

By now, you probably know the importance of social media. But have you ever sat there thinking, “What on earth am I supposed to post?!”

Or…”Why does no one ever like our stuff?!”

Yeah, we’ve been there too. It can be frustrating, no doubt. But whether you’re struggling with lack of content or lack of engagement (or both), we’ve found there’s one tool that typically prompts some activity: a social media content calendar.

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Are You Getting the Most Out of Your Conference Experience?

It’s starting to be that time of the year: Conference season! With more and more available conference options on the market, it can be tricky to know where to spend your continuing education budget to get the most bang for your buck. And then when you do finally decide, you have all this pressure to make the most of your conference experience!

It pretty much comes down to this: “If I’m going to take time away from the office, this conference better be worth it!” We totally get it. That’s why we’ve outlined the best ways to get the most out of your conference experience. Check them out below!

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3 Types of Surveys That Actually Boost Membership Retention

Increased membership retention doesn’t just happen on its own. Various initiatives have to be implemented.

One initiative that we highly recommend: surveying your association’s membership. Regardless of how long your association has been around - or what your retention rate currently is - there’s always room for improvement.

Now one of the responses we commonly hear when pitching membership surveys is, “Our members just don’t respond to those! Is the effort really worth it?”

YES! The key, though, is conducting a variety of surveys - short, long, open-ended, close-ended, etc. - throughout the year to garner maximum interest.

In fact, here are three types of surveys we recommend sending your members to boost membership retention:

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Meet the Help Team!

Not all heroes wear capes. These Clickers are kind, patient, and so dedicated that they come in early, stay late, and work weekends with smiles on their faces. They always go the extra mile and collaborate so seamlessly, they notify each other before stepping away for even 5 minutes. All of this, in the name of ensuring that you receive a quick, effective solution and can get on with your day. (Humble brag alert -) With a current satisfaction rating of 97%, we do have a reputation to maintain!

Everyone, meet the Help team!

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3 Steps for Pitching a New Idea and Getting the "Yes"

Most of us entered our careers all bright-eyed, creativity flowing, ready to take on the world. And then, most of us quickly learned some universal truths - one of which being it can be very difficult to pitch an idea to upper-management that is new or “different” to your organization, and get the go-ahead. This can be especially difficult in industries that are more hesitant to change, like associations and other member-based organizations.

That being said, the biggest barrier toward getting the “yes” typically lies in how you bring your new idea to the decision-maker. It’s not that your idea is bad - it’s just different, and they can’t quite see your vision right away, so they’re more inclined to pass. With these three steps, you can easily take a step back and build a pitch that will resonate with your boss, CEO or board in a way that they’ll easily understand its potential for having a positive impact on your members.

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[Guest Post] Membership 101: Life Time Value

The following blog post was written by Elizabeth Weaver Engel, M.A., CAE, CEO & Chief Strategist at Spark Consulting LLC.

One of the questions I get asked a lot is: “How much should I be willing to invest to recruit a member?”

The answer is not obvious.

For example, let’s say you invest $1,000 on a recruitment campaign and bring in five new members. That means you spent $200 each to acquire those members.

(Don’t get distracted by: “But I contacted 100 people, so I only spent $10 per person.” No, you didn’t. 95 of those people didn’t join.)

What if your annual dues are only $100?

Was that campaign a waste of money?

It looks like it might be, but it’s not necessarily, because of something called the Life Time Value (LTV) of membership.

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