Lunchtime Links: Looking for Value in Unexpected Places

How Justin Timberlake helped make MySpace exciting again, and why you should care. Also: SlideShare’s untapped value.

Ever find untapped value where you were never expecting it? Say, after leaving an initiative for dead, you find some value in the second chance? Or, perhaps you tried reaching out to a group of unengaged members for the first time and got an enthusiastic response.

Some other thoughts on finding value in unexpected places:

If Justin Timberlake and company can do that to MySpace, what can you do with your sleepy association platforms?

The value of the reboot: Remember MySpace? It was the biggest social network long before Facebook and Twitter, but after years of decay, the site became an also-ran among tech users. Last year, musician and actor Justin Timberlake became an investor in the site, taking a lead role in pushing along a reinvention. Monday, Timberlake launched a video boldly showing a new vision. Granted, your members won’t likely hop over to a music-oriented social network, but don’t miss the lesson here: There is always room for a comeback. If Justin Timberlake and company can do that to MySpace, what can you do with your sleepy association platforms?

The value of event apps: Are you thinking about creating an app? Stop thinking and just do it, guest blogger Thorben Grosser explains on the Event Manager Blog. The advantages are simply too important to ignore. “An app will eventually become a fundamental element of your communications strategy,” Grosser explains. “But it does not need to be a burden. Apps offer you the flexibility that you always wished printed guides had.”

The value of SlideShare: Want to get in on the ground floor of a platform that is incredibly useful but relatively underutilized? Try out SlideShare, suggests Gregory Ciotti of the Content Marketing Institute. “It’s one of the greatest untapped resources for many B2B marketers,” he exclaims. “Few platforms can compete with such a professional audience. Instead of getting the often bouncy social media traffic from places like Twitter, on SlideShare you are getting in front of decision makers and other business-minded folks.”

The value of Generation Y: Shelly Alcorn, CAE, suggests retooling your efforts to reach transitory younger members — maybe your association needs to focus on being a stepping stone rather than trying to keep them there. “If a Gen Y individual is seeking a leg up on a career and moving faster than ever,” she writes, “then maybe… your strategy needs to be less dialed in to ‘specific member value’ and dialed out to, ‘springboard capability to address wider needs.’ Maybe instead of a ‘home’ your association is a ‘springboard’ to what’s next. Why not?”

Where have you found unexpected value lately?

(TMG archive photo)

Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

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