Associations Now - May/June 2019


  • Cover Story: Artificial Intelligence: A New Tool for Member Service
    By: Tim Ebner
    Automated technologies powered by artificial intelligence—tools like chatbots and voice-enabled devices—offer speed and efficiency, but they also require careful planning, testing, and integration. Here’s how a few associations are putting them to good use to improve member service.
  • On the Fast Track to Fast Data
    By: Allison Torres Burtka
    Associations have found ways to get more business intelligence out of their data and use it to inform their decision making. The next challenge is to do it faster.
  • 25 Tech Terms Every Association Pro Should Know
    By: Rasheeda Childress
    With tech terms bandied about every day in association life, all staff need a basic level of technology literacy to communicate effectively and work efficiently. Need to get better at talking tech? Use this glossary to study up.
  • New Power and the Future of Engagement
    By: Mark Athitakis
    Associations can’t function like they used to, laying out a few rigid ways in which members may participate in the community. Now, members want to define the terms of engagement—or they won’t join at all. Jeremy Heimans and Henry Timms have a vision for what next-generation nonprofits look like in a “new power” world.


The A List

  • Do You Have the Right Payment Methods for Your Global Members?
    By: Mark Athitakis
    If you have members outside the U.S., pay attention to how they prefer to pay for products and services in their home countries. You may need to expand the payment methods you accept.
  • Ask the CEO: Society for Simulation in Healthcare
    Jennifer Manos, executive director of the Society for Simulation in Healthcare, answers questions from an SSH member about strategic leadership, getting started in associations, and “balance in all things.
  • Members Collaborate to Spread Wiki Wisdom
    By: Mark Athitakis
    At conferences and other gatherings, members of the Linguistic Society band together at “editathons” to make Wikipedia a more reliable source of information about their field. One key to editathon success: a little training.
  • A Credential for Newcomers
    By: Mark Athitakis
    To give new entrants to the retail workforce a boost and fuel the pipeline for employers, the National Retail Federation Foundation’s RISE Up credentialing program helps thousands of entry-level workers build skills for retail careers.


Money & Business

  • Don't Let Your Meeting Minutes Land You in Legal Trouble
    By: George E. Constantine III
    Reduce your risk of running afoul of state requirements, government investigations, or lawsuit document requests with these best practices for meeting minutes.
  • Get the Most From Your Email Metrics
    You probably have a wide swath of email data at your disposal, but how do you use it to meet member needs? Jared Loftus, chief revenue officer at, shares advice on where to start when analyzing your email marketing metrics.
  • Tap Member Enthusiasm in Peer-to-Peer Fundraising
    By: Rasheeda Childress
    Using the power of peer-to-peer connections, the Alzheimer’s Association increased fundraising results by 34 percent in just one year. That translated to an additional $2 million for the mission.


  • Keep Your Member Directory Cyber-Safe
    By: Tim Ebner
    Email and telephone “spoofing” scams, which mimic a legitimate person or business, are on the rise. Often these attacks target online member directories where members’ contact information can be used to deceive.
  • Website Users' Top Five Frustrations
    A few user experience (UX) mistakes may be the reason your website has a high bounce rate—the percentage of visitors who leave after viewing only one page. Do your best to minimize these five user frustrations.
  • With a Customer Experience Focus, You See Like Members
    Customer experience, or CX, has emerged as a vital business strategy for all types of organizations, including associations. Adrienne Bryant, CAE, account executive at IntrinXec Management, Inc., explains what associations can do to keep the member point of view in mind.
  • I Can't Live Without
    A simple online service can help you track invoices and payments both in the office or out.


  • Modernize Your Membership Cards
    By: Tim Ebner
    Lots of members still love their old-school membership cards. In the digital age, it’s probably time to make some changes, but even small ones can take time.
  • Connect With Your Slackers to Engage Members Online
    The office collaboration tool Slack can double as a way to reach members online. But first, it helps to know a few techniques for how to engage effectively.


Brain Power