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September 07, 2007

DTJ research associate responds to podcast

Clare Inzeo gets it.

She is an industry & market research associate at ASAE & The Center who emailed me to correct me and elaborate on a couple of points in my podcast. Here's the substance of her message:

I wanted to respond to several of the questions/comments you posed during the podcast.

The first is about the employer payment of dues concerning those who are self employed. If you refer to page 84 of the text, in exhibit B.14, you will see that there was a choice for the respondent to identify as self-employed. For the "current members," only .4% selected that answer choice. For the non-member survey, 5.6% of respondents identified themselves as self-employed when asked if they would join the association if their employer would pay (See exhibit B.20 on page 86). These people were eliminated from the analysis you see in the end of chapter 7 about employer payment of dues because they are really separate from the question we are considering. I hope this sheds some light on this issue.

Your other comment about Exhibit B-11 how people heard of the cosponsoring association is not exactly correct. This question was only about ‘first hearing’ which does not necessarily translate into ‘why I joined’. It really points out the importance of word of mouth in getting people to know about the association at all.

Finally, your comment about board vs. committee volunteers as promoters (exhibit 4.13) the difference between the 12.5% of governance volunteers being ‘detractors” and the 12.1% of committee volunteers as detractors is really not significantly different. That is, if we did the study again, it might come out the opposite way. In contrast the ‘promoter’ aspect IS significantly different with governance volunteers a lot more likely to be promoters (65.8%) than committee volunteers at 60.7% -- although both of these are much higher than either the ad hoc or non-volunteers.
My blog, my rebuttal. :-)

On the word of mouth thing, yes, at one point early in the podcast I did say that word of mouth leads to a decision to join. However, later in the podcast I attempted to correct myself to state that personal referrals are more directly tied to someone initially learning about an association. Regarding exhibit 4.13, I find it simultaneously curious, sad and understandable that upwards of 12% of committee and board members are association detractors. DTJ proves that engagement is the key to retention and member evangelism. Yet, when a member reaches the quote-unquote pinnacle of engagement, s/he is just as likely to be a detractor as someone a level below them on the volunteer food chain. Ideally the detractors should be a much lower portion of the board population.

Thanks a million for contacting me, Clare. I'm happy you made the decision to join this conversation!

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