Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Albert Einstein said it best...

It's the end of a decade, time to reflect on who I am, what I want, and what I want to be when I grow up. In my personal reflection, I found a wonderful quote that inspired me. I also found it relevant for association and membership marketers.

Albert Einstein is quoted as saying, "Try not to be a man of success, but a man of value." This axiom is vital for every association - membership, trade and everything between the two. No matter what your association's membership model may be, your success is tied to how valuable your members think you are to them.

We need to leave the build-it-and-they-will-come attitude behind us in this last decade. We now need to focus on the value that we promise and the value that we deliver to each individual member.

And boy is that hard! Every member has their own expectation and definition of value when it comes to their membership. That means we need to understand these expectations, prioritize them (some are more important than others), and do our best to deliver. And add on to this the fact that these expectations and definitions continually change based on any number of influencers that you have no contol over - economy, job, car trouble...you name it.

In looking at this, I'm reminded of the all-knowing Sales Funnel, where we establish specfic criteria to define niche-markets within a specific market. The wonderful thing about technology is that we can do this with our membership database and find those niche markets. We can then test tactics to engage our members and actually measure how well we are doing to satisfy those expectations. The ultimate measure of course is if they renew.

So, as we venture into the next decade, let's once and for all leave behind the idea that one-size-fits-all and embrace the variety and complexity of our members and work to not just satisfy a basic, group's need, but a group of select, individual's need.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Receives Direct Marketing Association of Washington Distinguished Achievement Award

The other night, Rick Whelan, President of MGI, received the DMAW Distinguished Achievement Award. Here is a link to the press release just in case you missed it:


Many of you know Rick at some level, either as a client, vendor, strategist. I've been fortunate enough to know him as this plus friend and mentor. He is by far one of the fairest individuals I've ever had the good fortune to meet and work with. I hope you all have the luck to work with him, or someone like him, someday. It will be blessing.

And as is the holiday spirit, I'm happy to count my blessings and include Rick among them.

Congratulations Rick! You earned it.