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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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The Non-Writer’s Guide to Writing

Posted by Callie Walker


We talk a lot about the importance of generating content, especially if you’re a professional organization. But what if you hate writing? Like, despise, loathe, and avoid-at-all-costs writing?

If that sounds like you, you’re not alone. But writing is important, and sometimes, it just has to get done.

If you’re a non-writer living in a content-driven world, let us help. Here are a few tips to help you master the technique:

  • Read, read, and then read some more - Writing will become a lot easier once you see how other people do it. The more you read, the more you’ll pick up on what you like (and don’t like) about other people’s work. You’ll start to learn new words and writing styles that you can then mold into your own.
  • Get comfortable breaking the rules - In school, we’re taught a LOT of rules about writing - but don’t feel like you have to follow those to a T. It’s ok to go off the beaten path a little. Write like you speak. Be friendly and informal (when appropriate, of course). This is what makes writing fun! And if you find enjoyment in doing it, you won’t dread it quite so much.
  • Don’t think, just do - When I first started writing, I used to get so caught up in every word/sentence. I used to think, “Is there a better way of saying this?” and it would undoubtedly slow me down. Don’t do this! When you sit down to write something, don’t think too much. Just do. Your first draft probably won’t be perfect, but that’s ok - it’s a first draft! Remember, when it comes to writing, focus first on what you want to say, then go back and improve how you’re going to say it.
  • Keep it simple - Another misconception about writing is that you have to use big words and long sentences in order to be “good.” But this is false. Sure, there are some great articles out there that are long and thought-provoking, but there are also some great articles out there that are short and to the point. Just do what comes naturally to you.
  • Incorporate pictures - You know what they say, “A picture is worth a thousand words.” So if you can find a picture that illustrates what it is you’re trying to say, incorporate it! Just make sure to always cite your source.
  • Practice - They key to mastering anything comes down to repetition. You may hate writing, but I promise, the more you do it, the better you’ll become.

Good luck, association professionals! And if you need ideas for what to write about, check out our post, 25 Blog Post Ideas for Your Small-Staff Association.

Topics: association management, association leadership, member engagement, Small Staff Chatter

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