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Are Your Vendors Engaged? Would You Like Them to Be?

Are Your Vendors Engaged? Would You Like Them to Be?

Rumor has it, in some association circles, trade show attendance is struggling. This could spell trouble for how vendor members find value in belonging to your organization. While some industries may be feeling the pain more than others, it is never a bad time to think about the ways you are engaging your vendor/supplier members. Read on for a handful of ideas on engaging your vendor-side members in effective and successful ways.

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Proving Your Association’s Value: Multimedia Style

Posted by Sarah Hill

 People absorb information all kinds of ways. All those different personality types out there could lead to a winning combination of success, engagement, and leadership for your association. The catch is all these different types of people learn differently. Some really love visual aids like Power Point presentations, some love a chart and a spreadsheet, some want to skip to the bottom line. So how do you diversify your programming and your recruitment efforts to encompass all of these different types of learners? One word: Multimedia.  

Proving Your Association's Worth 

For the visual person, you’ll need to show them the benefits of your association, obviously, but in a very distinct way. Pamphlets and information might do it, but a stronger message still will be sent if people come to an event and it’s well-attended with happy, engaging people. They’ll want to see dates on calendars, engagement on social media, and success stories.

For the analytical mind, facts and figures help a lot. Even though it may seem tedious to report, a simple fact showing association growth over the last year, number of college students mentored, some facts about the membership itself like career levels or dollars used for causes.

There is a whole set of people who need to hear something before it sticks. That means with those awesome visual aids and facts, you need someone emphasizing that information by saying it. Honestly, this is an easier group to reach because routine meetings are a great place to make announcements and share updates and information.

And finally, there’s a whole interactive type of personality that needs to actually participate, do, and see at the same time in order for it to really stick. This one is a bit harder, since you have to first get the member or potential member to participate. But once you do, your interactive, cool events and activities will no doubt hook a new member, or reengage an old one.


The bottom line is this: in order to reach a lot of people, you have to go multimedia. BUT if we’ve said it once, we’ve said it a million times. All associations are different. The very nature of your association may result in a lot of one kind of thinker, which may render an alternate form of marketing or programming a waste of time. Above all, it’s important for you to decide what works for your association, and go for it!

Topics: association leadership

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