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Friday Buzz: Hillary's Last Association Speech Before 2016?

By / Mar 20, 2015 Hillary Rodham Clinton accepts a "Camp David" sweatshirt. (CNN screenshot)

Hillary Rodham Clinton recently capped her two-year run of association keynotes with a campy speaking engagement: addressing a conference for camp professionals. Plus: How the mechanics of content marketing differ for associations.

Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton got down to earth with thousands of camp professionals at this week’s Tri-State CAMP Conference in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

“We really need camps for adults,” she joked on Thursday with the audience at the event held by the New York and New Jersey chapter of the American Camp Association (ACA). “We have a huge fun deficit in America, and we need to figure out how to fill that fun deficit.”

For laughs, camp owner and moderator Jay Jacobs gave Clinton a “Camp David” sweater—a wink to the secured presidential military compound in Maryland—before she bid the group farewell.

It could also be her farewell to the world of professional speaking. The ACA presentation is the last paid event on Clinton’s calendar, which could suggest she’s switching gears to focus on a 2016 presidential campaign. However, questions linger about the price tag. Clinton’s usual speakers fee, on average, ranged between $200,000 to $300,000. The Washington Post reported that if ACA spent $200,000 to get Clinton to speak, that would account for “about 10 percent of the group’s annual budget.”

Some questioned whether Clinton, who has appeared at numerous association events over the past two years, would prove too divisive a speaker for a general audience. For the most part, though, there were no ruffled feathers.

Except, of course, for that shoe-throwing incident during her Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries keynote last year. Who could forget about that?

Content Marketing’s Association Evolution

Almost everything in the association world is different. And that includes content marketing.

In a post on LinkedIn Pulse, content marketing strategist Roslyn Atkinson notes that content marketing strategy differs significantly in the association space. That even starts with how it’s labeled: Most groups call content “member communications” rather than marketing or PR, she noted.

That member-first mindset defines everything, including advertising, budgeting, and overall goals. What is beneficially unique for associations is the “power of communities,” Atkinson said.

“Associations have a head start,” she explained. “They have a built in community. Their members aren’t just a source of funding for the head office to run advocacy, programs and events. They’re a group of people that can put together their collective brains to achieve outcomes that they couldn’t achieve on their own.”

Links Of Note

Surround yourself in association history: The former Chicago Athletics Association headquarters is near the end of a renovation project that will turn it into a lifestyle hotel. Developers expect to open the facility in June.

Conference attendance is down, but how can we get it back up? Group rates, deals, and partnerships with organizations may be the answer, Velvet Chainsaw Consulting’s Dave Lutz suggests.

A data breach can cost between $3 million and $5 million, CMSWire reports. Yikes.

Patrick deHahn

Patrick deHahn is a contributor to Associations Now. More »

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