Insights

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  • 8 Jun 2018 10:06 PM | Belinda Moore (Administrator)

    Associations and sponsorship go hand in hand. But developments in technology and changing brand requirements have seen these partnerships shift significantly in recent times. Julian Moore from Strategic Management Solutions (SMS) explains these factors … read more. 

  • 8 Jun 2018 9:56 PM | Belinda Moore (Administrator)

    Associations come in all shapes and sizes. A membership campaign that works for one will not necessarily be the right fit for another. When developing your association’s campaign, there are several factors that need to be considered. Belinda Moore of Strategic Membership Solutions (SMS) breaks membership campaigns down by type and approach … read more.  

  • 20 Apr 2018 10:09 AM | Belinda Moore (Administrator)

    A year ago, the Telecommunications User Association of New Zealand (TUANZ) was on the brink of bankruptcy. Now, they have refocused their operations and have a plan to return to health. TUANZ is a membership organisation that shares industry information and training. It also does a large amount of advocacy work on behalf of users of information and communication technology services, which includes a range of member businesses … read more


  • 31 Mar 2018 9:42 PM | Belinda Moore (Administrator)

    Two years ago, the Victorian Healthcare Association (VHA) had no high-value partnerships. Now it boasts more than $600,000 worth annually. This impressive turnaround is the result of the not-for- profit’s concerted effort to align with partners who share their vision and values. But CEO Tom Symondson admits that he wasn’t always convinced that corporate partnerships were appropriate for VHA … read more

  • 8 Feb 2018 10:24 AM | Belinda Moore (Administrator)

    One of my first jobs with an association was back in 1994 where I organised a study tour into China for a group of members seeking to do business in the region.

    When I mentioned this to someone recently it gave me a bit of a shock when I realised that was 24 years ago! Particularly as I still feel 21 on the inside! Things have changed so much (not just in the association sector) since then.

    Below are 4 that immediately spring to mind. Can you think of any? Feel free to add your own via my LinkedIn post.

    1. Faxes aren't cool anymore. In fact, a lot of organisations don't even have a fax number now. I used to love to hear the ring and then garbled beeps as a fax came in. Would it be a membership application? ... an event registration?... nope ... a random advertisement. And don't get me started on how quickly that thermal fax paper faded! RIP faxes. You were awesome while you lasted.

    2. Websites are expected, not special. I remember pitching the idea of a website at an association I worked in and getting a series of responses that included "It's a short term fad", "it's a waste of money as members will never use it", and "if everyone else jumped off a cliff would you?" (no, but if everyone else jumped into a giant pile of money I would). Today, people expect that any company has a website.

    3. Being "kept up-to-date" really means it. In the first association I worked in, we proudly told our members that we kept them up-to-date. What that meant was a magazine every quarter, a wages update letter once a year, and the odd bulk fax to members when there was something really juicy afoot. Today, if the news happened yesterday no one wants to know. The pressure is on to ensure members get the right information in a timely manner ... and in a way that they actually read the info (rather than get it, not read it, and complain that no one told them about it).

    4. Smelling the photocopies. When we used to remove a copy from the ditto copier with its bluish purple print you could smell the aroma of the freshly printed page (an aroma enjoyed by generations of school students and later found to be toxic). I can still remember it clearly. No double sided printing in those day. Today's photocopiers just make life way too easy.

  • 7 Feb 2018 10:50 AM | Belinda Moore (Administrator)

    SMS is proud to announce it is a founding partner of Answers for Associations. Answers is network of specialist suppliers to associations dedicated to facilitating the sharing of innovative ideas and practices amongst the Australia and New Zealand association community. Answers has a free hard copy newsletter available to associate executives interested in hearing case studies from local associations about the innovations that have made their associations more successful. If you would like your copy, please click here to subscribe on the Answers website. The first edition of The Association Report is due out in early March.  While you’re on the site, check out their calendar of events and make a note of the ones you'd like to attend.  The first one is the Great Association Meetings & Events Symposium (GAMES) which will provide attendees with practical ideas that will make your events massively more successful. 

  • 7 Feb 2018 10:49 AM | Belinda Moore (Administrator)

    In April 2015 SMS completed a 30-month project to successfully turnaround the Australasian Society of Association Executives. Over that time, Belinda took the organisation from just over 100 members to 876 financial members and built a community of over 10,000 subscribers. When Belinda started at AuSAE their turnover was just over $40,000 per annum, and there was no staff support. When Belinda left the association in April 2015, it was on track for a turnover of around 1 million dollars and had 6 full time staff working in the organisation. In the following article Belinda Moore, Director of SMS, shares the step by step process they apply when undertaking an emergency turnaround ... read the whitepaper.

  • 7 Feb 2018 10:48 AM | Belinda Moore (Administrator)

    Potential sponsors don't sit at their desks all day waiting for your proposal to arrive on their desk. For many, sponsorship is one part of a larger role which keeps them very busy. This means your proposal isn’t just competing with other sponsorship proposals (of which there will be many) but also with many other distractions for a share of their attention. Having a well-crafted, compelling partnership document is a critical first step in getting the attention of a potential partner... click here to read the whitepaper.

  • 7 Feb 2018 10:42 AM | Belinda Moore (Administrator)

    There are a number of great resources for association professionals wanting to understand more about how to make their organisation more successful. We recently compiled a recommended reading list for association professionals for the Answers for Associations. We are keeping this list up to date so we recommend taking a look if you are wanting a good place to start ... read the list.

  • 7 Feb 2018 10:41 AM | Belinda Moore (Administrator)

    A number of powerful generational, cultural and economic forces are colliding to create a perfect storm that will make the next 5-20 years some of the toughest ever faced by associations. Associations who don’t adapt face a slow decline into obscurity as they are replaced by newer, more innovative, less bureaucratically challenged, less change resistant competitors. While the idea of membership will continue, the antiquated models of recruiting, retaining and engaging members cannot survive in an increasingly challenging and ever-changing operating environment ... read the full whitepaper.

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