Blog FPO

Hit the road: using roadshows to bring education to members

The following is an excerpt from Samantha Whitehorne’s story posted June 16 in Associations Now. Follow her on Twitter.

For the full story, click here.

We’re about to hit the peak point of summer travel season. While some may opt to fly to their vacation stop, others may go the road-trip route to take in the sights and sounds—and get some local flavor—on the way to their destination.

But summer travelers aren’t the only ones seeing the benefits of a road trip. More and more associations are hitting the highway to bring their meetings and education programs—often in the form of roadshows—to cities and states where their members are.

Roadshows are often both convenient and cost-effective for attendees, but I think they can also benefit the association hosting them. One benefit: The local stops can serve as testing grounds or informal focus groups. For example, an association could use a roadshow location to test out a new learning format or experiment with different speakers.

Second, roadshows could be a great way to recruit new members. If the education being offered on the road is current and relevant to the industry, nonmembers may be enticed to register. And getting them to attend a local event may make them more aware of your association and encourage them to become a member in the future.

Finally, roadshows could be a good place for associations to identify future leaders. When you get into your members’ communities, you’ll be introduced to new people and may find your association a new committee volunteer, chapter leader, or even future board member as a result.

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