It’s officially fall. Bathing suits and shorts are going into storage and sweaters are coming out. Social media is buzzing about fall premieres of their favorite shows and good-looking new ones. Let’s face it- people have been waiting all summer to find out what happened to their favorite SVU agents, music stars, and quirky families.
How does your association get that kind of buzz?
Fall is a time for getting refocused. Think about it: the New Year is all business and goal-setting. The spring carries on those goals but some of the steam may dwindle because of the changing weather and the preps for summer. Summer is still plenty productive, but the focus goes from the boardroom to the beach and vacations are encouraged and accepted.
Fall is when people get back into a routine. Kids are back in school, so the whole routine of wake up, daycare, school, dinner, and bed is back in place. Same with working professionals without kids: wake up, commute, work, come home, favorite entertainment, bed.
Your association can benefit from that switch in thinking! While people are refocusing on career goals and professional success, you will be there to help them out. Here’s how:
1) Get your association into a similar routine
If there ever was a time to pick back up with regular check-ins, meetings, conference calls, and events, it’s the fall. Try to work regular meetings onto the calendar and make sure things like newsletters and social media updates are scheduled. Your members are likely looking at their calendars far in advance; September and October are when travel plans start coming together for the holidays. (Eek!) Start planning things to help them fill out their calendars!
2) Tap into popular culture if it’s a natural fit
As we mentioned earlier pop culture is back on an up-swing. People are more likely to pay attention to current events, celebrities and popular entertainment because they can’t necessarily get out the same way they did all summer. Is there anything going on in the world that your association can work into the water cooler conversation? When you’re consuming your own pop culture on your own time, try to keep your association in the back of your mind. You never know what will create a stimulating and unique conversation!
3) Be consistent, but forgiving
You will probably naturally conclude that if a person misses one meeting, give them another chance. If they miss two, they’re probably never coming. That might be true for now, but you never know what’s going on in the member’s life. He or she might be on a huge project or life change that requires constant attention. If you have a habitual no-show offender who suddenly pops up and volunteers to head up a big project be suspicious but forgiving. You’re right to hesitate to put a whole lot of responsibility in his or her hands, but embrace the opportunity. Going back to the pop culture reference, our society is getting used to doing things on their own time. You don’t need to be on the couch every Wednesday to watch “Law and Order” anymore. You can catch up with your DVR or online!
Fall is a great time to get your members recommitted, reengaged, and energized. Go for it! We’ve got your back.
If part of your engagement strategy involves Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, check out our free guide to association social media engagement!