Welcome to the Marketing Impact Vlog!
If you are looking for some new associations or networks to join in the coming year, we’ve got some useful tips for you today.
Our topic today is How Leverage Associations, Councils or Any Other User Group to Improve Your Bottom Line (and Your Life!)
Here’s a startling statistic for you. The average person spends more than 90,000 hours in their lifetime at work, and (naturally) it affects their personal lives.
That’s a lot of hours!
Your time is extremely valuable, so making sure that you are spending time with people and associations that are actually going to help you get ahead both professionally and personally is key.
We’re going to share First: What to look for when joining a council or association and Second: use your membership connections to generate quality leads and overall improve your bottom line.
First up: What to look for
1) Look for Groups and associations whose mission aligns with your professional goals or with the products and services you are marketing.
Inquire about member portals and opportunities to interact with the member community both face to face as well as virtually.
Look for networking and interaction opportunities that are designed to foster direct relationships with other members.
If it’s a huge industry association, be sure it has local chapters or focus groups to provide those 1-to-1 engagement opportunities.
2) Seek out your peers in other industries
Many associations are industry specific. Instead, pick associations that connect you to peers in your role or related roles.
The benefit of this is that you really can get specific when it comes to sharing challenges and success stories. One conversation with a peer in another industry can result in massive insights you couldn’t have gotten any other way.
So these are the really critical things to know when you’re picking your council or association that will improve your life both professionally and personally.
Tips for leveraging association memberships to generate leads and sales
Once you’re in, it’s important to know how to make the relationships work for you.
Creative ways to use your membership connections to generate quality leads and overall improve your bottom line.
- Learn first.
Since you are in a network of peers the person in front of you might not be the decision maker or even your target audience. So instead of seeing each person as a potential direct lead, ask people “what kind of person or company does your company do business with?” This will not only help you be a better networker, it takes the pressure off of feeling like you are trying to sell right away.
Naturally, most people will want to know YOUR answer to the same question, and often they end up qualifying their own company as a good lead or referring you to a company they know that fits the bill.
2. Solve problems using the network.
This is how you can improve your bottom line—putting your membership connections to work for you.
One company in a Frost & Sullivan Leadership Council avoided spending tens of thousands of dollars on an outside consultant because he first interviewed a handful of peer members and acquired insights and best practices to solve the problem internally.
Always have something free that you can invite new prospects to do.
When you meet someone that would be a great fit for a follow-up conversation about your business, be sure you have something to invite them to do. Maybe it’s a phone call, but it could be other things:
- A free webinar your company is doing
- A survey
- A beta-tester group on an upcoming service or offering
With these tips, you are sure to spend your valuable time fostering meaningful relationships through councils and associations that can lead to both your personal and professional success.