Associations need to deliver on a few key things to satisfy member expectations. Also: what the surge in virtual events means for the future.
Members join associations for a variety of reasons, including professional development, networking, advocacy, and continuing education. But all members share a few underlying expectations, says Callie Walker of MemberClicks.
One of them is a seamless online user experience.
“People are used to interacting with sites like Amazon and eBay—intuitive and highly personalized,” Walker writes. “That said, when they go to other websites—your organization’s website included—they’re expecting a similar experience.”
More specifically, members want easy navigation; it shouldn’t be difficult for users to find what they’re looking for on your site. They also want a simple and secure online purchasing process. If they have to enter all of their information every time they make a purchase, you might be discouraging them from completing transactions.
Members also want to be up to date on the latest industry news. They’ll likely look to their association to provide it, so be ready to deliver timely information across your communication channels.
“The easiest way is to send out a weekly or bi-weekly newsletter with curated content from your particular industry (think news articles and blog posts),” Walker says. “How do you find that type of info? Follow thought leaders in your industry; like their pages on social media and/or subscribe to their blogs.”
Will Virtual Events Last?
Virtual events have grown in usage exponentially as a result of the pandemic. But will the trend stick around in the years ahead? We take a look at the possibilities. https://t.co/qZmZHWCuGQ#meetings #eventprofs #assnexec #assnchat pic.twitter.com/Qa9RLoij5E
— Michigan Society of Association Executives (@mymsae) July 14, 2020
Online events have surged in the last few months, but are they here to stay? While it’s hard to predict, consumers are getting more comfortable with virtual events and organizations are saving money, says Wes Sovis on the Michigan Society of Association Executives blog.
“In-person events require travel, lodging, and dining reimbursement, which means that the investment in sending staff to events can quickly balloon out of control from smaller associations,” Sovis says. “Comparatively speaking, registration for online events is usually very affordable. Eventbrite says the average ticket price for a virtual event is just $29.”
Other Links of Note
A safe return to live events? Event Manager breaks down what events could look like in the near future.
Zoom is expanding into hardware, The Verge reports. The company announced a $599 touchscreen device for remote workers.
Need to move your desktop PC? Lifehacker’s David Murphy shows you how to do it safely.