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  • Mentoring has been around since the dawn of time, and it certainly has been a central tenet within associations. Many of us can think of the one or two individuals we met through our professional association who provided important guidance as we navigated the early stages of our careers. Many associations have formal mentoring programs, where younger members are paired with more experienced members in the association in an official mentoring relationship (We’re also now pretty familiar with the...

  • Last week was chock-full of events and activities for 2015's National Volunteer Week. If you feel like it went by in a flash and you may have missed something great, head over to our Learning Series post-webinar page —it includes all sorts of volunteer tips, advice and reviews. In the meantime, we’ve pulled together our favorite volunteer tactics we learned from two leading innovators on the topic: Peggy Hoffman, CAE, of Mariner Management, and Elizabeth Weaver Engel, M.A., CAE, of Spark Consulting....

  • I’ve been in a lot of conversations recently with community managers and leaders who are feeling incredibly frustrated with the way their communities are (or are not) engaging and growing. As I dig down into what might be causing this frustration, I often run into the same problem over and over again: reality . So many community managers are wonderfully enthusiastic and optimistic about their communities. So much so that they begin to take an idealized view of how the community actually shows...

  • What you should know about Google’s new search algorithm On April 21 Google will introduce new search algorithm rewards for websites that are fully optimized for mobile platforms. Currently “mobile friendliness” isn’t a significant ranking factor in the mobile search algorithm. Tomorrow, mobile-friendliness will be. If you were to search for something on a mobile device today and then search again tomorrow (April 21), the results pages could look completely different. Considering the...

  • Carole Mahoney is passionate about inbound and engagement and has 15 years of experience working with commercial and nonprofit organizations, to determine how their buyers and audiences want to engage online, execute a content strategy to attract the right people at the right time, and measure results against real business goals. She is currently writing her first book, "Ingagements," to share the real world stories of how small organizations can grow and scale using an inbound engagement approach....

  • It’s National Volunteer Appreciation Week! 92.2% of association members reported volunteering with their association or another organization, according to ASAE’s Decision to Volunteer (2014), which published the results of a survey of more than 26,000 association professionals. So it’s no surprise that volunteers are an essential resource for any organization, especially associations. Empower your members to get involved by making volunteer opportunities easy to access and in a format they...

  • Many communities feel the pressure from committees, interest groups and other members to open new communities within their site (example: a Community for teachers has a lot of discussions on curriculum across the state, and members of a committee would like to start a separate community within the site). It’s a tall order if those groups aren’t prepared to develop a community plan, create seed questions and advocate on its behalf for support and engagement. These frequent requests can wear on...

  • Recent LinkedIn announcements reveal its interested in being much more than an online community platform. Between the acquisition of online marketing platform Bizo and its latest news on launching Lead Accelerator and the Network Display function, trends show LinkedIn is moving in a different direction. You could say this Borg-like movement (Star Trek reference—it’s too good to pass up) means the platform is now a greater entity that is not looking out for you or your best community interests....

  • We talk a lot about how social media has changed marketing pretty drastically, and we also talk about the Millennial generation’s use of social media and how much time they spend online and behind their screens. But we’re missing a more important point. When you look at the bigger picture, the real game changer behind social media has been the way it has transferred power away from central institutions and towards individuals. Remember when the only way to get video entertainment was at the...

  • As everything begins to thaw out, both people and communities crave activity after a long winter indoors, and perhaps a stretch of social hibernation, too. It’s time to open up the doors for fresh new events and meet ups. A common misconception for online communities is that it simply replaces in-person connections. For Lesley Lykins, the community manager at the Customer Experience Professionals Association (CXPA), not only has the opposite been true, but fostering those live interactions...

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