Posts tagged ‘membership’

21 Reasons Web Video is the Key to Your Association’s Future

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By Stuart Meyer

In many ways, the history of associations up to present day has been built upon information.  Think about it, trends, best practices, education, professional development, standards, research data and more.  For many decades our members and the rest of the world has looked to our association for information.

Today, information is everywhere and associations often find themselves getting lost in the ocean of noise.  The future of associations will be assured not merely by our highly credible body of knowledge, but most importantly by our ability to be a visible constant in effectively communicating and connecting our knowledge to our crucial audiences.

Of all the traditional media communications channels, video presents the potential to be the most engaging of them all.  Yet most associations are ignoring it’s powerful importance and long-term potential.  Ready to catch up?  Here are 21 crucial opportunities you are missing out on if your association is not currently planning it’s web video and web TV future:

1)  A Deeper Level of Engagement:  Compelling video-based content can evoke emotional-based economic decisions in ways few other mediums can accomplish as it helps members identify with the faces and stories behind the association’s mission, reflecting upon their own professional belief-system.

2)  Advocacy from the Front Line:  Creates a more powerful medium for stakeholders to not just hear about issues, but to immerse them in the experience, the lives and stories behind the issues.

3)  Rise Above the “Noise”:  As with advocacy, original programming creates a window into the public-interfacing side of the association’s mission which can capture attention like no other medium

4)  Increase Brand Visibility and Equity:  A story-driven association internet TV network can become a powerful branding platform for associations given the ability to inspire hearts and minds with compelling video content and create a quasi-“celebrity” good of the order feel.

5)  The Next Best Thing to Human Interaction:  The only communication medium more powerful than compelling multi-sensory video is recurring one-to-one human interaction.

6)  Traditional Media Regularly Searches Web Video:  Original programming creates a cross-over vehicle for direct use or heightened attention from traditional media networks.

7)  The Most Powerful Integrated Media Channel:  Compelling video-based content can be the primary communication medium and used as a secondary reinforcement/supplement  to other types of traditional media.  For example, video-based point-of-view (POV) stories could be used to illustrate a publication or journal article bringing the association mission “to life”.

8)  Build Targeted Channels Around Audience Segments:  Based upon member segmentation, an association internet TV broadcast network creates the opportunity to group narrower content into a series of channels with content focusing on each audience segment, such a student-focused channel.

9)  Capture the Heart… and Mind:   Member research almost always reveals a commitment to the higher association purpose in the decision to join and retain.  Beyond practical value, utilizing compelling video-based content can strengthen members’ emotional connection to the association in a way few other mediums can accomplish.

10)  Cross-Marketing:  Channel-based series and  programming creates an enticing “entry-point” for cross-promoting all other benefits, activities and opportunities within the association.

11)  User-Controlled Interactive Video:  Video-based technologies enable content producers to embed links and additional content within the viewing experience allowing the audience to “take additional action” or engage in transactions or conversations while still watching the primary video content, including the launch of web browsers.

12)  One Minute of Video is Worth 1.8 Million Words:  The mass medium of video enables associations to make compelling connections with hearts, minds and belief-systems like no other.

13) A Conversation Starter:  Compelling video-based content storytelling is a great conversation starter for ongoing dialogue via social media channels OR media-integrated interaction.

14)  Mobile Reach Beyond Association Walls:  Channel-based video content can reach the full spectrum of members and stakeholders via minimal investment of time/attention.  Further, internet-based programs become portable for easy aggregation across a wide spectrum of platforms and sites.

15)  A Long Media Shelf-life:  Unlike the limited shelf-life of publications, journals, earned media and other media tools, channel series and programming can be utilized repeatedly over time.

16) Watch Anytime, Anywhere:  From living room internet-equipped TVs to tablets, smart phones and PCs, it’s never been easier to build media channels and distribute video-based content.

17)  Non-Dues Revenue: The association broadcast TV network, channels and programming generates new opportunities for advertising and sponsorship.  While programming requires a one-time expense to produce, it has the potential to generate revenue for years to come.

18)  ROI (Return-on-Investment) & COI (Cost-of-Inaction):  With an internet-based broadcast channel’s ability to cross-promote the entire spectrum of activities within the association, ROI models should be set up to measure corresponding activity across the spectrum, well beyond the ability of traditional PR, paid advertising and collateral… all in addition to direct response measures and video platform analytics.

19)  New Strategic Sponsorship Opportunities:  Partner with sponsors to offset or cover the entire cost of development/production and creates an unprecedented level of brand-integrated positioning for strategic sponsors.

20)  Reasonable Production Costs:  With the rise in passionate creative talent and the decrease in technology cost, production and development is affordable by comparison to print publication, PR and advocacy programs.  Internet TV broadcast network creates the opportunity to group narrower content into a series of channels with content focusing on each audience segment, such a student-focused channel.

21)  Search Engine Optimization (SEO):  YouTube is the second largest search engine on the web and Google owns YouTube.  The Google search algorithm presently prioritizes YouTube video content on page one of search results.  I have one client who received a total of three page one Google search results simultaneously for an important keyword based on a video series we produced for them.

 

SM_12-4-12_edited-2With 14 years of association experience matched by a lifetime of creative experience in music and film, Stuart Meyer is President and Founder of Social Frequency Media Communications.  Social Frequency provides turnkey broadcast digital media development, platform and production solutions for associations, non-profit and business organizations.  Stuart can be reached at stuart(at)socialfrequency.net or by visiting www.socialfrequency.net 

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January 11, 2015 at 10:20 am Leave a comment

Social Media’s Impact on the Lifetime Value of Non-Members and Lapsed Members

For years, associations have been contemplating and calculating the lifetime value of a member.  In other words, the measure of the tangible value of a member who maintains her membership over a period of time minus the cost of servicing that membership. 

As we continue to move rapidly through the not-so-new frontier of the social web, we need to also look at another important lifetime value measure… that is the lifetime value of non-members and lapsed members.  The truth is we should have been looking at this particular measure even before the arrival of the social web years ago. 

Why you might ask?  First, because word-of-mouth marketing has been around since the dawn of spoken language.  An individual need not be a paying member, or customer, to create or detract value from your association. 

If favorable impressions about your association resides within the hearts and minds of non-members and lapsed members alike, there is always a higher likelihood that they would have favorable perspectives to share with their friends and colleagues that may influence tangible behavior.  Likewise, if unfavorable thoughts about your association occupy that expanse between the skull and the chest cavity of lapsed members and non-members, then there is an even higher likelihood that word-of-mouth communication will take place… the brand of communication that keeps association executives up at night.   

Enter, stage right, the social web.  Given the expansive reach of communication and interaction offered to virtually anyone with a computer and Internet connection, the sphere of influence impacting our association’s subject-matter has grown well beyond the walls of membership.  As such, the traditional notions of value creation has moved well beyond the tangible contributions of loyal members into the intangible, yet influential sphere of the social web.

Members are no longer the only game in town when it comes to value creation and influence.  While members are the cherished core of our associations,  we must expand our perspective and reach and engage the many influencers and, yes, detractors that are out there talking either directly or indirectly about our associations.  Remember, legitimate detractors most often complain because they care enough to participate and want to be heard.  With that said, be careful to not confuse reasonable detractors with incoherent crazies.

There is also the layer of lurking participants who may not be out there creating content, but are certainly tuning in. 

Your association’s social media strategy should factor in the tangible and intangible value of those lapsed members and non-members who are both visible and active out on the social web.  Even more, if you make the right connection you stand to gain even more than the value-generating relationship, conversation and content… you might actually win them back or bring them on board for the very first time as members as well as their followers.

By now, I’m sure some of you have already asked the inevitable question… “Sounds great, but how do you measure the lifetime value of lapsed members and non-members?”.  The answer depends on your association’s defined measures for success relating to social media strategy.  It’s not always immediate dollars as social media is relationship and conversation-based marketing by its very nature.  Put another way, it’s like planting seeds to fertile soil which you nurture and cultivate. 

However, there are measures including:

– Web analytics, links, demographics, ratings, Technorati ranking of content sources, qualitative comment analysis, content timing and more..

COMPARED to:

– Membership growth, inbound web traffic, conference registration, product sales and much more. 

Another way to measure offline value creation would be to develop benchmark snapshots of membership and customer geography (city, county, state, region, country) and track increasing/decreasing trends over time.  While the social web is universal, we all have a geographic point of origin which is our physical social sphere.

Don’t forget that you can actively track re-captured members.  Further, you can create “customer” records in your AMS for key social web influencers/participants and run periodic anlaysis to see who has joined. 

There’s still the good old-fashioned means of asking new members and customers how they first learned about your association.  Beyond the generic social media sources (such as Twitter, Facebook, etc) to specific blogs or other social communities run by key influencers.

The most important consideration is to be creative, experimental and open-minded as you fight off the temptation to become paralyzed by the illusion of perfection.

May 5, 2009 at 10:50 am Leave a comment


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