Making the Most of Events-Part 1 + Tips from ASAE

Annual Meetings, Conferences and Capitol Hill Days: The Oscars, Golden Globes and Grammys of the Association and Nonprofit World

It’s show time!  Now is when you and your members want to shine, to put the spotlight on your issues, the camera on your spokespeople, and win the support of leaders and the public.

For nearly 20 years, PRofessional Solutions, LLC has been providing communications professionals to temporarily assist associations and nonprofits with annual meetings, conferences and Capitol Hill days.  As a matter of fact, it’s one of the largest segments of our staffing business, so we understand the importance to your organization of a successful outcome.

Our associates can help prepare for, manage and wrap up a meeting that will leave you carrying the winning statuette:

Preliminary Tasks

  • Write press releases, key messages and talking points
  • Create web content
  • Identify highlights among the educational sessions and speakers
  • Build media lists and perform online research
  • Make pitch calls and send e-pitches to reporters
  • Develop bios for speakers
  • Contact Congressional offices to arrange meetings for members or donors
  • Use social media platforms to engage reporters and members
  • Work with sponsors to promote their messages
  • Create PowerPoint presentations
  • Arrange for the press room resources

While planning for your next event, consider following the advice of Sabrina Kidwai, senior manager of public relations at ASAE: The Center for Association Leadership, “To keep your meeting format fresh, consider small, incremental changes each year. Change just one thing, see if it’s successful and determine if you want to keep that change for the next program.”

An example of that type of change would be ASAE’s IGNITE sessions which they added to their meetings last year. Presenters share their personal and professional thoughts in just five minutes, using 20 slides that change every 15 seconds. I call this the elevator speech of presentations.

Kidwai reports the IGNITE format was so successful that there was standing room only in these sessions. ASAE has included this type of offering at successive programs and it will be ASAE MM&C Conference 2012a part of its upcoming Marketing, Membership and Communications Conference scheduled for May 23-24, 2012 in Washington, DC.

To learn more about the MM&C conference or to register, visit the meeting website. For more details about ASAE’s IGNITE sessions, visit their Acronym blog.

About Melanie Jordan

Melanie Jordan is Managing Director of PRofessional Solutions, LLC, a public relations temporary staffing firm located in Washington, DC.
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