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Engaging First-Time Conference Attendees

Engaging First-Time Conference Attendees: 4 Tactics to Try

Of course you want to provide an exceptional experience for ALL of your conference attendees, but ensuring that happens for your first-time attendees is particularly important. Their decision to attend future events (and possibly even renew their membership) depends heavily on that first experience, so going the extra mile for those folks, in particular, is certainly worth it.

What does “going the extra mile” for your first-time attendees look like? Here are a few tactics worth trying:

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Association Basics: Blogging Tips for Non-Writers

Posted by Krissy Conant


For some people, writing comes naturally and effortlessly. But for others, it can feel more like nails on a chalkboard.

Fret not! If you’ve always described yourself as a “non-writer,” let’s change the script. Take a look at these four basic tips to get you started on writing for your industry and becoming a thought leader!

1. Know your Audience

Before you begin thinking about writing material, you need to have an idea on who wants to read your blog. Start by imagining who your ideal readers would be and build out a buyer or member persona. Ask yourself questions like:

  • What are their passion points?
  • What are their pain points?
  • Why would they be looking for your blog?

The more you can identify these answers, the better vision you’ll have of your blog audience. That said, don’t feel like you can only build your reader personas from your imagination. Try reading message boards relating to your industry to better understand your readers motivations or try speaking directly with fellow professionals at industry events.

2. Research your Topic 

After you’ve determined your audience, it’s time to pick a topic you think would draw these potential readers to your blog. While your ideas will vary depending on your industry, it’s a good idea to pick a couple of topics and start researching what others have discovered. Now, we aren’t condoning stealing others ideas, but rather seeing if some industry information provides you with a fresh point of view or sparks an idea of your own.

In addition, researching your topic will stop you from being one of those folks who state their opinion as fact. As great as it would be to always be right, unfortunately that’s just not the case. One of the first steps to being a good writer is to always fact check yourself. Trust us: Your readers will thank you for it.

3. Create Three Sections

There is little worse in the blogging world than reading a post that goes all over the place without any direction. To become a more efficient blog writer, start by dissecting your posts into three chunks to tell a story to your readers. Some people call these sections your introduction, your body, and your conclusion while others say beginning, middle, and end.

While we recommend going with whatever terms resonate best with you, the typically format usually goes like this:

  • 1 - Start by sharing why they should have interest in your post.
  • 2 - Give them easy bites of information that they can easily implement.
  • 3 - Sum up why this information is going to provide them value.

If it sounds simple, that’s because it is. Yes, even you dear non-writer can do it! You’d be surprised how big of a difference your readers will feel with a little built-in structure.

4. Include a Call-to-Action

Lastly, to make the absolute most out of your post, you should try to include a call-to-action at the end. Why? A call-to-action is a way to motivate your readers to make an immediate response to your website, such as making a call, clicking a link, or signing up for your organization!

This will hopefully keep your readers longer on your site and allow them to have more interaction with your organization. So, what does this look like? Try including any of the following links that can connect to your present post:

  • A contact us form
  • Another one of your blog posts
  • An upcoming event
  • Your membership page

At the end of your post, you want your readers to feel like your blog content resonated with their needs and provided them value. This connection is a win-win for your organization as it will allow them to seek you out in the future and build your reputation as a thought leader in your industry.

Becoming a better blogger is just one way to increase your marketing efforts for your organization. In all reality, people can’t join your organization if they don’t know you exist! Now we understand, you’re just an association or chamber professional, not a necessarily a marketer. Take a look at our guide, The Small-Staff Guide to Association Marketing, to build a stronger marketing strategy for your organization!

The Small-Staff Guide to Association Marketing  How to spread the word about your association Download this guide

Topics: association management, member engagement, Small Staff Chatter

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