Media outreach

Monday Buzz: How to Make Your Association a Media Star

Looking to bolster your association's media outreach? Take some advice from a pro. Plus: Brace yourself for the internet-of-things culture clash.

Want coverage? Understand whom you’re trying to reach.

Corporate communications expert Erik Sherman, writing for, outlines 11 steps to creating your own media stardom. And what’s the first and most essential step in getting your message out to the public through the media? Understanding how journalists work.

Your association already sells itself to members and nonmembers based on what you know they want—whether it’s information, professional resources, or other benefits.

“Sell yourself to journalists the same way—that is, understand them,” Sherman writes. “I don’t mean memorize the list of what reporters say they want, but understand why they want them. There are concerns about personal careers, the need to interest audiences, time pressures, distrust of all things PR, competitive considerations, and egos.”

But there’s more to it than just learning about journalists. You’ll have to put some work in to become a valuable source, providing earnest, spin-free contributions.

“If you want to be anyone’s go-to for some topic, you need to build a relationship,” Sherman says. “That means doing things that don’t directly benefit you, as is true in any real connection. Drop an idea, point out an interesting article, or, after you get to know someone a bit, ask about the kids.”

Report of the Day

Meeting-services provider Greenfield Services has released its annual report on the state of Canadian associations. So what did the firm find? Among many other management issues, association execs north of the border have their eye on monitoring member engagement.

“Association executives are well aware of the emerging need for member-driven management and customized service. Almost half expressed strong concern about their organizations’ inability to properly track or measure member engagement,” Greenfield’s Meagan Rockett writes.

For the full report, click here.

Other Good Reads

The internet of things is going to shake up entire industries as consumers, companies, advocacy organizations, and, of course, associations try to grasp the implications of a continuously connected society. Gigaom‘s Stacey Higginbotham takes an intriguing dive into the culture clash that this trend reflects between businesses that produce traditional physical goods and startups that focus on digital innovation.

Spending too much time on social planning? Then trim the excess from your schedule and free up time to focus on the most effective methods of outreach for your association with these four tips from Buffer’s Neil Patel.

The secrets of event planning, all presented in a little black book: Event planner Holly Krenek offers a checklist at Event Manager Blog for planning your association’s next big thing. Among the tips: Create an “aura,” which Krenek says is determined by “the venue, location, mood, and style of your event.”

(Mihajlo Maricic/ThinkStock)

Morgan Little

By Morgan Little

Morgan Little is a contributor to Associations Now. MORE

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