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Expert Advice: 5 White Papers Association Executives Need to Read

Looking for more reading material? Here are five awesome reports and white papers for association executives.
Looking for more reading material? Here are five awesome reports and white papers for association executives.

As an association executive, you have plenty of resources at your fingertips to make informed decisions for a smarter future. The problem is this: do you really have time to weed through all the sales-heavy material to find the real diamonds in the rough?

To solve the issue, we parsed through a bunch of white papers for you. The following five reports will give your trade or professional association the insights needed to improve member engagement, stay on a smart technology path and find a new generation of members.

What Association Executives Must Read in 2019

1 – “A Cloud Primer for Associations” — DelCor

It’s all about the “pure cloud” in both the association and for-profit spaces these days. But what is it? Why should your trade or professional association move major systems to the cloud? What are the terms worth knowing?

DelCor answers those questions and more in this 4-page white paper that can help you make sense of the software-as-a-service model.

Among the benefits of pure cloud systems that DelCor highlights, this one stands out:

“It can be scaled to deliver exactly what your association needs, when you need it, regardless of size.”

For associations considering the small handful of truly cloud-based association management software options, this is a great piece of content to download.

2 – “7 Business Impact Metrics for Associations from Your Community” — Higher Logic

You want an online community, but you’re having trouble justifying the expense to your board. In this short white paper, Higher Logic uses the cold, hard truth of math to help explain your opportunities to measure return on investment from an online community.

Of the seven metrics included, one that is definitely worth knowing for virtually all association executives considering an online community: percent change in event registration after the community is launched.

3 – “Getting More Bang for Your Buck: 8 Quick Tips to Boost eLearning Revenue” — WBT Systems

Simple. Flexible. Affordable. Those are among the eight tenets WBT Systems preaches to elevate ROI from association e-learning.

Each of the white papers and reports mentioned maintain a theme of efficiency for association executives. In this case, WBT Systems points out how webinars, professional development and other training opportunities can be more relevant and accessible?

Our favorite tip is to make all training courses available to non-members. As WBT Systems suggests, it’s a chance to widen your audience and create new opportunities to entice non-members to join.

A Colorado-based association did just that, allowing non-members to attend for a $99 fee, but making webinars free to members. Ultimately, this process led to a massive jump in webinar attendance.

4 – “Trochlil’s 7 Technology Principles” — Effective Database Management

Finding new tech solutions for a trade and professional association should be exciting. It’s all about finding a tool that will improve productivity for staff, and in turn provide a better experience for members. But it’s hard to fault anyone for being jaded after a less-than-fabulous software implementation.

Wes Trochlil’s report help organizations get more out of their new technology by asking association executives to consider a few simple concepts on the path toward selection.

Here’s something Trochlil posits that extends beyond tech purchases: “Just because it’s free doesn’t mean it comes with no cost.” With unfamiliar, unknown and low-cost options, it’s unclear how much time it’ll cost you to learn all the workarounds and quirks you’ll need to effectively operate the system. Plus, will it integrate with your current systems? It’s important to consider both upfront and hidden costs when reviewing solutions.

5 – “Ready or Not, Here Comes Z” — XYZ University

Anyone who’s discussed membership with association professionals recently knows that finding ways to engage a new generation of members will be critical in the years to come.

The focus often falls on millennials, but it’s already time to turn to Generation Z — those born from 1996 to 2009.

XYZ University surveyed 1,801 of these “Zs” to help associations understand and adapt campaigns to their next generation of members. The insights in this white paper can give any trade or professional association an edge when initiating conversations with prospective members.

Looking for more insights, including some from your peers. Download Protech’s free e-book, “Association Experts Share the Hidden Truths to Member Engagement,” to find out what six associations did to enhance their member experience.

Looking for member engagement ideas? Download Protech's free e-book today.
Looking for member engagement ideas? Download Protech’s free e-book today.