0314122 marketing meeting report v2 032112


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0314122 marketing meeting report v2 032112

  1. 1. Marketing Meeting ReportMeeting Date: 3/14/12Location: Frost Miller GroupParticipants: Dave Carrithers, Jackie McMahon, Grady Phelan, Liz Johnson, Katie Tolerico, Barb Myers and Kevin MillerOverview:The purpose of these meeting was to: 1. Reset the overall corporate message 2. Determine strategy as of today forward 3. Prioritize the corporate marketing and promotions efforts 4. Develop a list of all marketing communication activities and assign responsibilities and dates 5. Cover major items like: ASAE events/activities, product launches, etc. 6. Create a clear understanding of what needs to be created by when.In addition, marketing was discussed in a prior meeting Monday, 3/12 between Giulietta andDave, and in subsequent meetings including an overall ACI team planning meeting on 3/15, anda sales meeting with Dave, Bill and Pat on Friday, 3/16.Goals:1. 120,000 active AchieveLinks users out of a pool of 1.8 million members by March 30 20132. Issue 1.4 billion Links Reward Points by March 30, 20133. Generate operating income of $72 million by March 30, 20134. Secure 300 Association clients with an average of 5,000 members5. Sign up 10 key industry-specific partners for each association at launch6. Start working with up to four AMC’s by October 20127. Develop campaigns and efforts to generate qualified association leads for sales3-21-12 Version 2 1
  2. 2. Positioning 1. We are selling AchieveLinks – not ACI. AchieveLinks is front and center, with all other products and services (credit card, gift cards, rewards, marketing and promotional support, etc.) supporting it; 2. AchieveLinks is the first member engagement and benefit program of its kind built solely for associations. A key marketing communication and sales objective is to supersede association executives’ perceptions of affinity programs (discounts) by educating and exciting them about the membership advantages of our rewards program; 3. AchieveLinks is a business tool 4. AchieveLinks is about building and strengthening community 5. The least priority of AchieveLinks is every day shopping 6. AchieveLinks is about co-branding, web buying, redeeming links, and supporting associations from launch to beyondTarget Audiences:The target audiences for ACI’s corporate marketing communication efforts include: 1. Associations A. Executive Directors and C-level executives with membership and/or marketing oversight B. Small or Mid-sized associations with fewer than 30,000 members C. Located primarily in these major metropolitan areas: Washington DC, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Chicago, St. Louis, California, Boston and Texas) D. Construction, facility management and restaurant and catering ndustry associations E. State or regional associations of larger national associations (like AGC) F. Associations with members who have concentrated purchasing power G. Leaders with a strong desire to bring new thinking and offerings to their members, a desire to be perceived as creative and forward thinking, and with decision-making authority H. Associations that will support ACI’s communication to members with active participation3-21-12 Version 2 2
  3. 3. From a sales perspective, prospect associations and customers are put into three buckets: “A” associations – those who will put a champion on the programs and really own it. They understand the affinity partner side and what differentiates AchieveLinks from other affinity programs, plus members with Concentrated Purchasing Power; “B” associations – they kind-of get it. They have the same qualifications as “A” associations but don’t invest the same amount of time; “C” associations – they don’t have concentrated purchasing power Generally speaking, selling and communicating to these associations can be viewed as a bell curve: the “A” associations will find a way to make the program work and the “C” associations are relatively worthless to us. Getting “B” associations moved up to “A” thinking and actions is where we put the majority of our effort. They need a little push in order to succeed. 2. Association Management Companies (AMCs) AMCs are professional service firms that provide executive, administrative, and financial management; strategic counsel planning; membership development; public affairs and lobbying; education and professional development; statistical research; meetings management; and marketing and communication services, typically to smaller associations. The associations they manage would share the same demographic and psychographic characteristics of the associations that are directly targeted by ACI (see above). 3. Affinity Partners B. Product or service suppliers to the association industries targeted C. Also, product or service suppliers to the specific association customers D. Most likely already have a reseller or commission-based selling structure for others outside the organization E. Most likely do not have a loyalty program and could not warrant developing one on their own, but see the value of such programs F. Most likely a regional or second-tier player in their marketsIn addition to ACI’s corporate marketing effort, the company will work with association clientsto promote the AchieveLinks program to members, through an integrated and coordinatedcampaign of direct marketing (digital and print), advertising (digital and print), web and socialmedia engagement, and promotion at association events.3-21-12 Version 2 3
  4. 4. BenefitsThe benefits of AchieveLinks—for associations and AMCs, Affinity Partners and members—need to be better communicated. 1. For associations and AMC’s A. Increase member engagement B. Membership recruitment tool C. Co-branded credit card with increased share-of-wallet D. Co-branded website. E. Non-dues revenue generating opportunities based on the success of the program F. Ongoing promotional and member marketing support for holidays, association specific activities and other programs including association conferences and events G. Gives small associations access to programs and opportunities previously available to only larger groups 2. For Affinity Partners A. Increase sales opportunities with members B. Solidify relationship with association C. Increase frequency of purchasing D. Increase the total purchasing amount by consolidating purchasing E. Rewarding loyalty customers F. Upselling opportunities G. Gathering additional purchasing behavior trends data H. Low risk, only pay when there is a sale 3. For members A. Exciting and valuable industry partners to earn Links loyalty points both for business purchasing and everyday spending B. Ongoing membership in the fastest and richest earnings reward points program – double, triple and greater earnings potential, plus bonus earnings allowing members to earn points faster and rewards sooner C. Visa platinum credit card that earns Links Reward Points for everyday purchases and bonus links when purchasing from Affinity Partners via the AchieveLinks program website. D. They can use links to pay for association products – dues, events, etc. along with travel, merchandise, gift card and more rewards.3-21-12 Version 2 4
  5. 5. Marketing Communication ProgramsMarketing communication programs to support corporate marketing efforts were discussed indetail and prioritized into A (immediate), B (intermediate) and C (less urgent) categories.(Member marketing was also discussed, though not in quite as much detail.) A breakdown ofeach follows, along with notation of who is responsible for each item and its approximatedeadline. “A” Priorities 1. Success Guide for associations (including one-pager and PowerPoint). This tool will help the sales force present the benefits of AchieveLinks to association executive prospects and act as a leave-behind for associations to share with key staff, Boards and committees. The guide will be produced in print and digital versions. The version used will be decided by the presenter and to address the needs of the prospect. The guide will be roughly divided into three sections: 1) an explanation of the AchieveLinks programs and its benefits to the association, its members, and its sponsors and supplier members; 2) the association’s role in the program’s success; and 3) the Fast Track program. FMG will work with Jackie to develop these materials. The goal is to have temporary Success Guides finished by March 30 with printed, more permanent versions ready by mid April. 2. Website (www.affinitycenter.com). The website must be refocused to promote the flagship product AchieveLinks, with different features and/or program highlights changing on a roughly monthly basis. The graphic approach will be simpler and cleaner, along the lines of Apple’s website. The three targets for the website are associations, AMCs and Affinity Partners. The website should be laid out in a way that it is easy for these target audiences to self select where they can get the information they need (with three menu boxes beneath a main visual). A scrolling list of Affinity Partner logos will be displayed to demonstrate the credibility and buying power that the program represents. FMG will revamp the website with oversight by Grady. Work will commence immediately with a detailed schedule to come by March 21. 3. ASAE MMCC conference 90-day campaign. Much of the tactical marketing communication plan is focused on communication around the events at which ACI is speaking, exhibiting or sponsoring. The first of these is the ASAE Marketing, Membership & Communications Conference May 23-24 in Washington. The campaign will include theme development, booth design and construction, pre-, at- and post-show promotion, and attendee engagement strategies. Grady will direct the theme development and overall design of the booth and work in concert with FMG to develop pre-, at- and post-show promotional materials. FMG will provide on- site support. Work will commence immediately with theme and booth design taking place now, with pre-show emails and updates to product fliers started in mid-April.3-21-12 Version 2 5
  6. 6. 4. Prospect development campaign. A campaign is needed to continually feed prospects to the sales team. This effort will include development of lists of association executive and AMC prospects, both within and outside of ASAE membership; and tactics that may include advertising, direct marketing (digital and print), advertising, face-to-face, webinars and eNewsletters. FMG will coordinate this effort, first by researching and renting databases, then developing a campaign strategy, and finally by executing tactics. Templates for eNewsletters and webinars will be designed so they can be ready as soon as needed. 5. ASAE sponsorship engagement. ACI and ASAE have entered a three-year corporate partnership developed to provide maximum exposure for AchieveLinks and create alignment between ACI and ASAE. The sponsorship represents a bundled package to help build and maintain a relationship with ASAE members and the association community as a whole. In order to ACI to get the maximum possible benefit from the sponsorship, a proactive effort of engagement is needed. FMG, along with Dave C., will work closely with ASAE to ensure that ACI is getting the absolute most possible from its sponsorship. This will include regular phone meetings, as have been occurring since the partnership started. 6. Rollup campaign. ACI’s sales team has identified a solid opportunity in promoting AchieveLinks to other state and local associations of national associations to whom they have already targeted a state or local chapter. A good example of this is the Associated General Contractors. ACI is already working with the Washington and St. Louis chapters. A rollup campaign is needed to promote the program to other AGC chapters. This program could include elements of video, face-to-face (at the association’s annual or leadership events), targeted messaging and landing pages. Other associations that have similar profiles to AGC include ABC, IFMA, and specialty contractor associations like NECA and MCA, among others. FMG will develop a strategy and then execute marketing communication materials for ACI. Strategic development is underway and once completed, a suggested plan with due dates will be presented to ACI. 7. ACI message laddering. Grady will develop a visual representation of the messaging that could be used to promote ACI and AchieveLinks to associations and members. This is under way now. 8. Membership marketing campaign (three). A marketing campaign needs to be developed to be used to promote the AchieveLinks program to members. The purpose of the campaign is also to demonstrate to associations that ACI can do the work for them. It will also be developed in advance so that it can be shared as part of the Success Guide (at least in future iterations of it). Grady will develop a strategy and then execute marketing communication materials for ACI. Strategic3-21-12 Version 2 6
  7. 7. development is underway and once completed, a suggested plan with due dates will be presented to ACI. “B” Priorities 1. Canned events. An overall event marketing strategy needs to be developed with a series of situations planned and designed in advance. These would primarily be targeted to association members with different themes and designs used depending on the makeup of the association membership and would include booth design and construction, talent options, messaging and promotional materials. Grady will develop a strategy and then execute marketing communication materials for ACI. Strategic development is underway and once completed, a suggested plan with due dates will be presented to ACI. 2. Video donuts. Video donuts are typically 60-second produced spots with general promotional information at the beginning and end with a ‘hole’ in the middle for customization. They would be used for promoting to associations – specifically as part of the association rollup campaign where one executive director can tell others about the benefits of using AchieveLinks, and to members – where executive directors would endorse the program and encourage participation. Grady and FMG will work in concert to develop themes, storyboard and produce the donuts. They will then identify people to fill the donuts, script and record their segments. Theme development and full schedule will be presented to ACI shortly. 3. Association advertising campaign. A campaign of three ads spinning off the “It’s all about members” ad needs to be designed and created in advance so that they can be used as needed for different situations and target audiences. The ads will focus on the primary benefits of the program. Preparing the ads in advance will help maintain consistency in positioning and branding. FMG, with oversight from Grady, will develop the ads. A schedule will be given to ACI by COB Wednesday. 4. Public relations campaign. The PR effort has floundered with the lack of content and direction, but Dave and Giulietta will constantly feed Liz with ideas and content for press releases and feature article pitches. FMG will work closely with Dave and Giulietta to develop story ideas, and refine its strategy for FY 2013 and present it to ACI by COB Friday. 5. ASAE Annual Meeting 90-day campaign. Similarly to the ASAE MMCC 90-day campaign mentioned above but on a grander scale reminiscent of ACI’s launch at the ASAE Annual Meeting and Expo in 2011, a campaign will be developed that includes theme development, booth design and construction, pre-, at- and post-show promotion, and attendee engagement strategies for the 2012 annual meeting August 11-14 in Dallas. Grady will direct the theme development and overall design of the booth and work in concert with FMG to develop pre-, at- and post-show3-21-12 Version 2 7
  8. 8. promotional materials. FMG will provide on-site support. Themes will be developed by May 1 with booth design commencing immediately thereafter, with pre-show emails and updates to product fliers started in mid-June to launch in early July. 6. AchieveLinks Facebook and Twitter campaigns. Because one of AchieveLinks main selling points is its ability to create communities of buyers and strengthen the communities already established by members, ACI needs to have a robust social media presence and be active participants in its association member social media sites (whether public like Facebook or proprietary to the association). The social media pages are set up; they just need to be promoted on the AchieveLinks site and we need to start getting content that is geared toward members…product news, promotions, etc. In addition, we need to get to members right away- when they enroll, we should make it a visible option for them to like us on FB and Twitter. FMG will work closely with Dave and Giulietta to develop content. Once technical glitches are rectified and the Facebook and Twitter links on the AL user site are working, FMG will begin an active campaign of engagement on those social media sites. 7. Success Guide for Affinity Partners. Similar to the effort targeting association executives, and Success Guide for Affinity Partners will be developed that includes a print and digital leave-behind, a one-pager and a PowerPoint presentation. FMG will work with Jackie and Jeff/Joe to develop these materials. A detailed schedule will be provided to ACI shortly. 8. Promotion campaign targeting Affinity Partners. A more proactive marketing effort is needed to attract Affinity Partners to the program. Most of this effort will be specifically targeted toward companies that sell to the members of specific associations who are ACI clients, as well as those that sell to the targeted industries as a whole. An important aspect of this campaign is that is can “plug-and-paly” by the associations to target their corporate sponsors and supplier members, as well. Elements of this campaign could include direct marketing (digital and print), advertising within industry trade publications, and a more robust and sales-oriented web presence. FMG will develop a strategy and then execute marketing communication materials for ACI. Strategic development is underway and once completed, a suggested plan with due dates will be presented to ACI. 9. Ongoing social media content development. It is essential that the social media campaigns remain consistent and interesting in order to promote community and engagement. To that end, ACI will provide more content and ideas to FMG and team. In addition, responsibilities and subject focus for Blog writers needs to be addressed so that they can presented in a more consistent, regular fashion. FMG will work closely with Dave and Giulietta to develop content and continue posting to the Facebook page and tweeting with the goal of actively engaging users, and get direction from Dave on enhanced Blog use.3-21-12 Version 2 8
  9. 9. “C” Priorities 1. Product demonstration videos. An important objective of the marketing communication program is to simplify the program in the eyes of ACI’s target audiences. One key way to do this is through product demonstration videos that clearly and powerfully show how AchieveLinks is used and how the program is managed by associations, members and Affinity Partners. FMG will begin developing estimates for these demo videos. Grady and FMG will work in concert to develop themes, storyboard and produce the videos. FMG is in the process of gathering production estimates. Theme development and full schedule will be presented to ACI shortly. 2. White papers. The first white paper to be developed will focus on “The Science Behind Member Loyalty,” which will become the basis of ACI’s ASAE Meeting presentation. Subsequent subjects are to be determined. FMG will begin working on this white paper as soon as time allows. FMG will begin gathering information for the first white paper and work with Dave and Giulietta to develop ideas for additional papers.3-21-12 Version 2 9