Association Brain Food Weekly: 11.15.19

Free professional development resources and events for CAEs, association staff and others in the association community

The weekly list of free educational events and resources for the association community…

Free professional development resources and events for CAEs, association staff and others in the association community

WBT Systems lists the integration issues you should consider before selecting a new LMS. They also suggest questions about integration to ask your shortlist of vendors.

Do you think all AMS are essentially the same beneath the bells and whistles? I did but now I know better thanks to this post from MemberSuite about the seven hidden costs of a pseudo SaaS AMS. I also didn’t know some AMS are not really SaaS and why that’s a critical distinction. Sounds geeky but it’s not.

Here’s one for my marketer friends from Jodi Harris at Content Marketing Institute about how to educate management or leadership about the value of content marketing. It’s a worthy topic if you want to distinguish your brand from the competition and get a head start on developing deeper relationships with clients and prospects.

Billhighway shares the story of an association that took a successful chapter mentoring program, worked with the chapter to scale it up and then offered it to other chapters. 

Quick hits before we get to next week’s free webinars:

  • Don’t assume younger employees are the most tuned in to cybersecurity. Per a new study, the cybersecurity awareness gap isn’t what you’d expect. (Ernie Smith, Associations Now)
  • 5 types of data you should request on your event registration form—and why. (Dave Lutz, Velvet Chainsaw)

Good eats:

  • The best dish all week: homemade lamb gyros from Serious Eats. Who knew you could replicate that satisfying late night flavor at home? I remember going to a little place in Georgetown back in my waiter/bartender days for my gyro fix after work—or after last call. For this recipe, I made my tzatziki without mayo and with the addition of dill. We added chopped lettuce and tomatoes to our gyros.
  • Another hit, this salsa verde from Taste. I swear the color and texture changed after adding the vinegar, so cool. Was it culinary magic or science? We had it one night on fish (wahoo) and another night on steamed potatoes.
  • Jim has a hunting trip coming up later this month, so we need to make space in the chest freezer for, hopefully, a bountiful venison harvest. Rummaging through, I found a forgotten three-pack of cauliflower rice from BJ’s in there. I sautéed red onion, a mix of peppers (sweet corno di toro, poblano and jalapeno), shiitake mushrooms and cabbage, and then added the “rice” to the mix. Very tasty.

Here are the educational events scheduled for next week. If you have any free webinars or events coming up, please send me the link. I’ll be happy to feature it as long as it’s not product-centric.

Mon 11/18 at 1 p.m.* – Chatting with Agnes & Cecilia

Check out this 15-minute web series covering hot topics and issues related to 501c organization management. A new episode is posted every Monday by 1 p.m. More info.

Host: Rogue Tulips LLC


  • Agnes Amos-Coleman, MBA, CMP, education, conference, event, certification consultant, Amos-Coleman
  • Cecilia Sepp, CAE, CNAP, principal and founder, Rogue Tulips LLC

*All times are Eastern Standard Time unless otherwise noted.

Tue 11/19 usually at 8:30 a.m. – Coffee Talks with Results Direct (usually in Alexandria VA)

Save the date and check their website for more information.

Host: Results Direct

Tue 11/19 at 11:00 a.m. – Tech Talk on Tech Tools

Join a free-wheeling discussion about some hot tools and topics, specifically: password managers – our favorites and how to integrate them into your life; Slack – what it is, why we love it, how we use it; managing documents in the cloud – how to organize your docs and collaborate with your colleagues; making remote staff feel part of the gang – video and other communication tools. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: Matrix Group

Presenters: Matrix Group CEO Joanna Pineda, CTO Maki Kato, Front End Developer Jaime Quiroz and Project Administrator Maria Lima

Tue 11/19 at 12:30 p.m. – Tracking Membership Renewal System Performance

Where are your renewal efforts most vulnerable? How do you know your membership renewal efforts are optimized? What can be done to find the leaks in the key activity supporting member retention? Learn about the components of a membership renewal tracking system critical to optimizing its performance. 0.5 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: The Next Steps LLC

Tue 11/19 at 1 p.m. – Check Scams and How to Safeguard Against Them

Scammers are getting more and more sophisticated in the tactics they employ to steal financial information; learn what to watch for so you can protect your organization’s assets. More info/register.

Host: MCI Group

Presenter: Kristen Hewlett, MCI USA’s Vice President of Finance

Tue 11/19 at 2 p.m. – Association Chat on Twitter (#assnchat)

The original #assnchat Twitter chat is back. Join an online tweet chat with fellow association professionals by following the #assnchat hashtag on Tuesdays at 2 p.m. More info.

Host: KiKi L’Italien, founder, Amplified Growth

Tue 11/19 at 2 p.m. – Anatomy of a Mission-Driven Website

Explore what makes for a successful mission-oriented website, from content to user flow to thank-you pages. Learn how to write clear hero messages that encourage your audience to take action. Find out how you may be creating confusion through your messaging, user experience and/or forms (and how to fix them). Take away tactical tips for quick website fixes that result in immediate improvements. More info/register.

Host: Mighty Citizen

Presenter: Mike Steckel, User Experience Director, Mighty Citizen

Tue 11/19 at 2 p.m. – Turn Your Conference into a Content Machine

Learn how to best capture content that will not only increase your revenue, but increase the value for your participants. Get your producer hat on as we consider content in new and fresh ways which lead to creating products and services from your conference content that users will see as a necessity. 1 CMP credit. More info/register.

Host: PCMA


  • Tracy King, MA, CAE, CEO and Chief Learning Strategist, InspirEd
  • Celess Tyrell, Director of Online Learning and Innovation, ANNA

Tue 11/19 at 2 p.m. – How to Design an Irresistible Website that Attracts the Right Members

Find out how to appeal to your potential members, so you can design a website that builds trust, surpasses expectations, and increases membership applications. Learn how to define your user groups and create an unforgettable user experience, 10 best website design practices to increase your membership, and the essentials you need for every nonprofit website page. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: Wild Apricot

Presenter: Sarah Henry, Content Marketing Growth Manager, Elevation Web

Tue 11/19 at 2 p.m. – Four Findings Why Face-to-Face Meetings Still Matter

A research study conducted by Hilton Hotels and Resorts revealed that respondents still believe that they can get more done in-person. This presentation will showcase the results of the study and how these findings could be integrated to elevate the attendee experience at your meetings. More info/register.

Host: Smart Meetings

Presenter: Nicole Tilzer, Director for Hilton Hotels & Resorts, and Signia Hilton, Global Brand Marketing

Tue 11/19 at 2 p.m. – Event Tech in 2020: Tools and Trends You Need to Know

Unless you’ve immersed yourself in the world of emerging event tech, it’s nearly impossible to see the possibilities available and how they can transform for your event. Hear about tools and trends you need to know for 2020. Listen to client case studies. Find out what attendees really want, and what the biggest names in the industry are doing at their events; uncovering fresh event tech ideas to increase your value and efficiency. More info/register.

Host: BizBash

Presenter: Joe Schwinger, CEO of MeetingPlay

Wed 11/20 at 12 p.m. – Experience Design Trends in 2020: Inclusion, Tech, Inspiration

Designing experiences in 2020 will go beyond meeting design and F&B. In this featured webinar, a panel of three experts on diversity, tech and production will outline the top trends that will shape the attendee journey in 2020. 1 CMP credit. More info/register.

Host: Event MB


  • Andréa Long, Global Diversity Events Manager at Twilio
  • Lenny Talarico, CSEP, CHE, founder, Design Lab, The International School of Hospitality
  • Joe Schwinger, Co-Founder and CEO of MeetingPlay
  • Julius Solaris (moderator), Founder and Editor in Chief,

Wed 11/20 at 1 p.m. – Beyond the Course: Content Marketing Strategies for Continuing Education

With countless ways to promote and package instructional content, what’s the best way to invest your time and budget? Learn how to prioritize fluid customer education needs, build a convincing business case, and choose effective tools and technologies. Take away tips for quick deployment and continuous improvement, successful “lifecycle” content strategies, and metrics to evaluate program impact over time. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: Talented Learning


  • John Leh, CEO & Lead Analyst at Talented Learning
  • Tiffany Mack, Sr. Marketing Manager of Careers & Education at Community Brands

Wed 11/20 at 1 p.m. – At Your Service: Free Ways CVBs Can Assist Your Meeting

Involving a CVB, or DMO, as they’re frequently called, at all stages of your meeting cycle is a sure way to save money. Learn about the specific services CVBs offer free to planners, how CVBs can help you negotiate with the various facilities and services you’ll require for your meeting, and how CVBs can help eliminate red tape for special considerations such as closing streets and reserving public spaces for events. 1 CMP credit. More info/register.

Host: Meetings Today

Presenter: Bonnie Wallsh

Wed 11/20 at 1 p.m. – Translating Customer Experience into Member Experience

Find out how an association turns CX into MX—Customer Experience into Member Experience, and what interactions with the association and on the website are important. More info/register.

Host: Engage Software

Presenter: Tammy Puyear, senior Operations leader, Engage Software

Wed 11/20 at 3 p.m. – 5 Security Tips to Protect Your Login Credentials and More

Account compromises are one of the top 5 threats facing nonprofit organizations and are perhaps the most impactful. Digital credentials, such as usernames and passwords, connect you and your employees to critical business applications, as well as online services. Unfortunately, criminals know this—and that’s why digital credentials are among the most valuable assets found on the Dark Web. Learn about tools and techniques that can be used to protect your digital identity including good password practices, adding Multi Factor Authentication (MFA), and monitoring to alert when a compromised account is found. Don’t assume your organization won’t be targeted – everyone is a target. More info/register.

Host: Community IT

Presenter: Matthew Eshleman, Chief Technology Officer at Community IT

Thu 11/21 usually at 8:30 a.m. – Coffee Talks with Results Direct (usually in Reston VA)

Save the date and check their website for more information.

Host: Results Direct

Thu 11/21 at 11:30 a.m. – How to be Both Profitable and Fulfilled in Business (Alexandria VA Brown Bag)

Hear proven strategies for increased productivity and profitability by pursuing fulfillment first. Learn how to discover your members’ hidden motivators, and why every association should make it a priority; the one shift that increases loyalty and member buy-in; the five secrets to driving and maintaining organizational culture and growth; and why honoring individuality is key to accomplishing the corporate mission. 1 CAE credit. Location: Alexandria VA. More info/register.

Organizer: Talisa Thomas-Hall, ACS ALB, VC5, The Association Whisperer

Presenter: Jason Shine, REAL Smart Consulting

Thu 11/21 at 12 p.m. – The Value of Transitioning from a Sponsorship to a Partnership Program (Partnership Professionals Network Idea Exchange: Washington DC)

Sometimes the terms “sponsorship” and “partnership” are used interchangeably, however, they can be very different programs for associations and not-for-profit organizations. Participate in an in-depth discussion about more than 15 key differences between sponsorship and partnership programs, and learn the value proposition of each difference. Location: Washington DC. More info/register.

Organizer: Partnership Professionals Network

Thu 11/21 at 1 p.m. – Jump-Starting Revenue for Your Learning Business

Most learning businesses need to generate enough revenue to cover their operations and, in many cases, subsidize other parts of their organization. Hear about the building blocks of successful revenue growth and explore a range of techniques your learning business can leverage to significantly boost revenue from its current offerings. Walk away with concrete tips and practices you can put to work immediately to jump-start revenue for your learning business. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: Tagoras

Presenters: Celisa Steele and Jeff Cobb, co-founders of Tagoras

Thu 11/21 at 2 p.m. – How Associations Are Enhancing Member Value with Data Analytics

See how easy it was for trade association 340B Health to set up member engagement scoring that included data from all relevant systems and in one year gain insights in the three areas that matter most to the typical association: member retention, new member acquisition, and conference registration. More info/register.

Host: .orgCommunity

Presenter: Rob Miller, CAE, senior vice president, Gravitate Solutions

Thu 11/21 at 2 p.m. – How to Increase Your Event Sponsorship Revenue in 2020

Event sponsorships are a great way to add revenue growth and ROI. Discover valuable ways to change your sponsorship approach and offer winning combinations for organizers, exhibitors, and sponsors. More info/register.

Host: Community Brands

Tue 11/26 at 12 p.m. – Creating Boards of Excellence (Washington DC Idea Swap)

Creating a board of excellence requires more than a once a year effort. It requires commitment, patience, making the organization a priority above personal interest, listening to others even when they don’t share your perspective, and the willingness to support a voice/decision outside the board room when the vote didn’t go your way. Learn how your association can create a board of excellence, and how to ask the hard questions, hear varied voices and opinions, and capture moments of connection to develop a board that leads better together. 1 CAE credit. Location: Washington DC. More info/register.

Host: ASAE Greater Washington / National Capital Community

Presenter: Lowell Aplebaum, CAE, CPF, CEO, Vista Cova

That’s it for now. If you can’t attend a live webinar, go ahead and register if the topic interests you. Most webinar hosts send registrants a link to the recording.

Association Brain Food Weekly is published Friday mornings. If your organization offers free professional development for the association community, please send me the link via email or Twitter before Thursday afternoon.

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Creative Commons image by Mathew Schwartz via Unsplash

Author: deirdrereid

Deirdre is a freelance writer for companies serving the association market, who after more than 20 years in the association and restaurant industries, is enjoying the good life as a ghostblogger and content marketing writer. Away from her laptop, you can find her walking in the woods, doing yoga, going to shows, journaling, cooking, or relaxing in a comfy chair with a good book and a glass of something tasty in hand.

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