ASAE’s Marketing, Membership, Communications Conference Gives Association Executives Digital, Content, Branding Strategies

May 5, 2017

WASHINGTON—During ASAE’s Marketing, Membership, & Communications Conference (MMCC), May 2-3, 851 association executives and industry partners took part in 24 learning labs, three keynotes, two preconference workshops, and networked in the exhibit hall at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center.

“The education sessions and keynote speakers this year really resonated with our audience. They provided attendees with insight on the latest trends, advice on how to strengthen their brand, and the best strategies for marketing, membership, and communications,” said ASAE President and CEO John H. Graham, IV, FASAE, CAE.

New this year, ASAE offered two preconference workshops on May 1. In “Strategic Talent Management for High Performing Marcomm Teams,” the six content leaders focused on culture and its impact on an association’s success in building high-performing teams. The second workshop “Membership Recruitment in the Digital Age” Shama Hyder, CEO of The Marketing Zen Group, discussed five ways organizations can grow their digital footprint and convert this to new member growth.

For the opening on May 2, there were two keynotes: Shama Hyder and Eric Kuhn, the Chief Marketing Officer at Layer 3 TV. Hyder kicked off the session saying how people are now the media and how organizations need to think about how to reach them effectively. She talked about three trends in digital marketing including: identity-based ecosystem, content curation and aggregation, and video has become device agnostic.

Kuhn discussed the best practices to bridge content and technology, utilizing the current social networks effectively, and preparing for what’s coming up next. The keys for great content include: understanding how your members use and engage with the different social media platforms, communicating the value of your association, and knowing that content needs to be compelling and tell a great story.

On May 2, ASAE also announced the 2017 Gold Circle for Overall Excellence winner — the American Society of Anesthesiologists: Protecting Safe VA Care. 

Here’s a full list of the 2017 Gold Circle Award winners, which is sponsored by HighRoad Solution.

A keynote from William Espey, brand voice lead at Chipotle Mexican Grill, kicked off May 3. He talked about brand value and how it’s important to showcase your personality, the association’s values, and create communities that benefit your customers. He emphasized that organizations should use psychology when facing a crisis and approach it from the individual’s perspective. The organization needs to apologize, be transparent, rebuild trust, and create a process for its members to reconnect.

ASAE thanks the following Alliance Partners for their continued support of the association community:

Strategic Partners
Atlanta CVB
Business Events Canada
Choose Chicago
Experience Columbus
Reno Tahoe USA
Visit San Jose

Corporate Partners
Visit Baltimore
DelCor Technology Solutions
Visit Dallas 
Greater Fort Lauderdale CVB 
Fort Worth CVB 
Louisville CVB 
Mexico Tourism Board 
Naylor Association Solutions
Visit Omaha 
Visit Orlando 
Visit Salt Lake

Event Partners
The Broadmoor 
Dubai Association Centre 
Hong Kong Tourism Board 
Johnson Lambert LLP and Vault Consulting 
Korea Tourism Organization 
Meet In Minnesota 
New Orleans CVB and New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center

MEDIA CONTACT: Sabrina Kidwai, APR, CAE,, 202-326-9505.

About ASAE: The Center for Association Leadership 
ASAE is a membership organization of more than 30,000 association executives and industry partners representing more than 7,400 organizations. Its members manage leading trade associations, individual membership societies and voluntary organizations across the United States and in nearly 50 countries around the world. With support of the ASAE Foundation, a separate nonprofit entity, ASAE is the premier source of learning, knowledge and future-oriented research for the association and nonprofit profession, and provides resources, education, ideas and advocacy to enhance the power and performance of the association and nonprofit community. For more information about ASAE, visit