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5 Out-of-the-Box Ways to Engage Members on Social Media

When I first joined Twitter in 2009, I was a 19-year-old concert junkie who thought it was the COOLEST thing to have a direct line to my favorite bands and their members. That summer, the Vans Warped Tour production team used the social media network to ask concert goers to volunteer for a couple of hours, in exchange for a spot on stage during the set of their choosing. Um, excuse me? 28-year-old me is still reeling over how cool that was. And without a tool like Twitter, it would’ve been nearly impossible to pull off.

Using social media as a way to engage an audience in unique and unexpected ways has been a no-brainer to me ever since. These platform’s very existence depend on interaction. And as a member-based organization, fostering a sense of community is in your roots. That will always be true, no matter how communication channels change over the years. The real-time, highly visible nature of social media is just what associations need to create meaningful and continuous member engagement.

Here are a few thought starters:

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Friday Top Five: February 7, 2014

Posted by Sarah Hill

It's time for our weekly link lovefest, sharing the best news associations can use from around the internet! 

Friday Top Five 2/7/14

Volunteer Management: I Gotta Feeling by Aaron Wolowiec

"Whether volunteer, volunteer leader, staff liaison or some other essential component of the volunteer management continuum, we all know what a good experience “feels” like. The sense of accomplishment from a job well done, the delivery of a long-anticipated product or service, a new friendship or business contact and the list goes on."


CalSAE Association Executives Name 6 Big Trends for 2014 by Shelly Alcorn

"I am lucky enough to get to play along with the California Society of Association Executives (CalSAE) IDEAL(TM) learning laboratory.  Recently we sat down and spent five hours digging through 2014 trends, running a context map exercise and coming up with what these awesome association executives think are the top 6 association trends for 2014.  Read on!"


Is Unmembership the Future of Associations? by Adrian Segar

Unmembership? What’s that?” It’s a word invented by my creative friend Mitchell Beer during a wonderful ninety minute coffee break during the 2014 PCMA Convening Leaders conference a few weeks ago. Let me explain.

First, some definitions. In this post I use the term “formal member” to refer someone who has paid dues to be an association member, while “informal members” are those people who would currently consider themselves to have a significant connection with an association. Unlike informal membership, the exact number of formal members of an association can be quantified at any moment from an AMS report. Associations that have no formal members use what Mitchell calls an unmembership model."


Helping Conference First Timers And Solo Attendees Move Beyond Hello by Donna Kastner

"Technology advances have made it easier for attendees to find like-minded people, but we need to prime the pump and tap technology in smarter ways to help them. Here are a few tips to help warm up the conference networking experience:

1. Reach Out to Solo/First-Timers Before Your Conference

2. Power Up Your Mobile App as a Connection Accelerator

3. Embed Networking Conversations Within Education Sessions

4. Extend the General Session Experience with Follow-Up Chats

5. Speed Networking with a Purpose"


Is Your Nonprofit Content URGENT? by Caryn Stein

"If creating compelling content can help you make the case for giving and hold the attention of supporters, exactly how do you come up with the best stuff for your nonprofit? Creating content for content’s sake won’t do much for your cause and may have a negative effect when done poorly. A lot goes into making and effectively distributing quality content, but ideally your nonprofit content should be URGENT (Useful, Relevant, Genuine, Edited, Necessary, Tested)"


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