Technically speaking, 2012 was the year of instant gratification. Readers couldn’t seem to get enough of our instapolls about technology and related digital communication topics. Even if they didn’t always agree with our findings, they continued to enjoy the instant feedback feature of our reader polls and the ability to see how they stack up to their peers.
Top 10 Association Adviser Instapolls of 2012
|1.||Which of the following best describes how you think your members use smartphones on a regular basis?|
|2.||For what purpose is your organization using Quick Response (QR) codes the most?|
|3.||What type of system do you use for membership management?|
|4.||What is the biggest selling point of your annual conference or convention?|
|5.||Is your association using online video to enhance communication and education?|
|6.||How quickly after a show should you follow up with important new contacts made there?|
|7.||Which of the following describes the most advanced way you use LinkedIn?|
|8.||Which technology investment would have the most impact on your organization?|
|9.||What is your association’s single most valuable membership benefit?|
|10.||Are you surprised association members still place a high value on print communications (i.e. magazines, directories, show guides, etc)?|
Source: Association Adviser and Naylor, LLC 2012-2013 | N=3,250 (as of Jan. 7, 2013)
Nearly 700 readers responded to our poll about their members’ smartphone usage. We learned that members still use their smartphones for voice conversations, but NOT as often as they do for downloading videos and texting. Almost one in four (24 percent) respondents felt their members were using smartphones to download videos, compared to almost 16 percent who believed smartphones were being used for talking, 15.3 percent for texting, 15.1 percent who said for social media and 14.9 percent each who said for app activities or scanning QR codes.
Which of the following best describes how you think your members use smartphones on a regular basis?
Speaking of QR codes, that was our second most popular reader poll. More than four in five (81 percent) readers who responded said they were using quick response (QR) codes for at least one purpose, with more than one in four (26.6 percent) using them to help members register for webinars or other online learning opportunities, and another 20 percent indicated they were using QR codes to add value to their advertising and sponsorship programs.
As members get more demanding and increasingly sophisticated in their needs, fewer associations feel they can get by with good old-fashioned spreadsheets to manage their member databases. A host of both fully loaded and “light” membership management tools have flooded the market to help association collect online dues, manage their online communities and membership websites, gather valuable business intelligence and provide members with increased value. But, there’s no clear market leader according our third most popular reader poll.
As NaylorNet Vice President Marcus Underwood observed, the market for membership management systems is “very fragmented.” The so-called Big Three: AVECTRA, ImIS, and TMA “own the large association space,” and everyone else fights it out for the small- to mid-size association.
Other technology or digital communication-related polls in our 2012 Top 10 were:
No. 5: To what extent is your association using online video to enhance communication and education?
No. 7: Which of the following describes the most advanced way you use LinkedIn?
No. 8: Which technology investment would have the most impact on your organization?
2012 wasn’t all about digital and technology, however. Some legacy topics remained top of mind with our readers.
In June, we learned in our fourth most taken poll that professional networking remains the biggest selling point of our readers’ annual events. And in July, our fifth most popular poll indicated that readers are very aggressive about following up with new contacts they’ve made within one week of a live event they’ve attended—including nearly one-third who follow up within three days!
Other polls rounding out the Top 10 in 2012 include:
No. 9: What is your association’s single most valuable membership benefit?
No. 10: Are you surprised association members still place a high value on print communications (i.e. magazines, directories, show guides, etc.)?
Have a burning question we can help you with in 2013? Send it here and we’ll do our best to get it in front of your 7,000 peers who read, watch and engage with Association Adviser every month.