As you, your fellow executives and board members gaze into the future, you may be throwing around or even “test driving” ideas of new models to diversify your revenue streams and change how you monetize your content. This could be due to revenue declines, or just the need to adapt to new market drivers.
Whatever the reason, you're not alone. Over the last few years, a majority of associations have reported difficulties in membership engagement and growth, and have turned to innovation before degradation.
Associations, non-profits, and societies tend to find themselves in the perfect storm of resource-deprivation and program decentralization.
This equates to small marketing teams with lean operating budgets working as in-house agencies to a suite of program managers. The fall-out from this often comes down to inefficacy, lack of focus, and inevitable burnout among team members.
So what can marketing team leads and managers do to shore up scope with resource reality?
Breaking up can be hard. Whether you’re ending a romantic relationship or a friendship that’s no longer serving you, saying goodbye to something or someone that feels familiar is uncomfortable.
The same can be said for breaking up with data. Holding onto data, even if it’s outdated or ineffective, can feel familiar and comforting. Your mind might start racing: What if I delete it today and I need it two weeks from now? What if there is value there I just haven’t found yet? What if I delete too much and then I'm left with gaps?
If you’re feeling that way about parting with your data, you’re not alone.
"Our stacks are mismatched to our future," said Reggie Henry, Chief Information and Engagement Officer at ASAE.
The controversial albeit thought-provoking statement kicked off our HighRoad Spring VirCon 2021 virtual event last month, where Ron McGrath, HighRoad's CEO, interviewed Reggie in an exceptionally data-forward keynote.
In the talk, the two industry leaders riffed on the definition of digital maturity as it becomes more and more synonymous with organizational success.
Kate Hudson was onto something. And not because she did the 60s style purple sunglasses and cream-colored boa right in the year 2000 Almost Famous film. Rather, in the same film, she coined the phrase, "It's all happening."
That's what comes to mind when I think of virtual event shift.
Whether we're prepared for it or not, virtual events are happening. They're here and they're not going away. While in-person conferences will start to crawl back out of the cave, the sheer flexibility, potential cost savings, and, yes, data traceability afforded by virtual conferences will undoubtedly turn hybrid event models into the norm.
You buy a Yeti—a bicycle built specifically for mountain riding. The bike itself touts a light-weight body, trail-friendliness, precision-riding, nimble climbing, among a number of other features that make it ideal for trekking in the mountains.
You have all of these grandiose ideas of riding with the wind against your face, conquering heavy mountainous terrain and immersing yourself in the outdoors.
And then you buy it.
And suddenly, your entire vision seems unachievable and overwhelming. So, you take it for a spin around your neighborhood block and bring it home. It's safe, easy, and you need the exercise, so you rinse and repeat every weekend.
That's what it's like when you buy a marketing automation platform and use it as an email tool. You use a sliver of its functionality and don't necessarily achieve your goals.