According to Nielsen, 50 percent of global consumers say they would be willing to reward companies that give back to society by paying more for their goods and services. This also applies to organizations and associations. When a company or AMC gives back to society themselves, associations are more likely to choose them as their partner because of their commitment to always thinking about instituting positive change.
Association-led events and programs can be a significant influencer for change, raising the organization’s global status and boosting its economic, knowledge and social development.
So how can associations, organizations and nonprofits drive positive change?
Make your meeting meaningful- Regardless of where the upcoming annual meeting is being held, there is a need in the surrounding area. There are homeless shelters that could use a few hours of someone’s time; animal rescues that would love for volunteers to come and walk the dogs for 30 minutes; a food bank that is in desperate need of food to be sorted-all are asking for time, not money. Ask your meeting committee or even just your general membership for ideas of places in the area surrounding your meeting that could use a few hours of volunteer time. Have chapters? Reach out to the host chapter and ask that they organize a day of service that will coincide with the annual meeting. Members are already there-take advantage of them and what they are willing to give.
Partner up! Partnerships with like-minded organizations, companies and sponsors are beneficial beyond the expo hall. They often have lots of connections, larger budgets and the ability to promote a cause to a wide audience. Ask a partner to consider hosting a fundraising event for a cause chosen by them or-even better-your members at the upcoming annual meeting. Considering giving back to local organizations in the meeting area? Ask a sponsor to arrange for buses to get your members to various places with the area in order to serve multiple causes on the same day, at the same meeting.
Use social media for good. Social media, when used for good, is a great way to spread a message. Events can be costly and your meeting may not allow for time to offer the community outreach program but multiple social media platforms and various programs allow for money to be raised for whatever cause chosen. Survey members to see what/who they want to support the most and take it from there. Encourage engagement by asking members, partners, supporters, CVBs-whomever-to help spread your message by sharing posts and links. Use your blogs, emails and other forms of communication to get the word out. Thanks to social media and technology in general, the possibilities are endless.
Driving positive change is easier than you think; you just need to hit the gas and go.