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Cutting Through the Noise

2 min read

A few years back my mum suggested I use her art studio name ‘Noisy Mynah Studio’ for my business. I couldn’t see the connection, but as she explained it was, in fact, the perfect fit. “The Noisy Mynah bird is territorial, resourceful and makes a hell of a racket that no one can ignore – sounds like you!” she told me. “Noisy Mynahs attack larger birds such as crows and kookaburras with such vigour that most other birds are excluded from the area they occupy.”

Some three years later the synergy with my business continues. The key words are noise, vigour and aggression. It is about cutting through everything else so you are the only one being noticed. It is about ensuring that your territory is safe from attack and other competition.

Over the years I have seen some less than professional branding by the association sector. Lacking focus or drive and being utilised without care. The impression this leaves is forgettable at best.
Communicating your brand should be representative of your overall business philosophy. Your image as an association is intrinsically linked with how you communicate your association activities. Included in this communication should be your CPD’s (corporate professional development), annual awards, conference, networking events and SIGs (special interest groups).

Good design costs money, but bad design does too
Your brand design should look professional and above all be consistent.

Create templates so that you can drop the relevant information in as you need it. Your staff, in conjunction with your style guide should ensure that the message you are communicating is consistent for membership communication, newsletters, sponsorship documents, event invitations, website add-ons such as PDFs and registration forms, and lastly staff email signatures.

Are your board and/or council also communicating your brand message correctly? Are they armed with enough information about your organisation and its intended message to be good business development managers on a day to day basis? Are they building membership for your organisation?

Rather than the expensive option of creating business cards for each individual board member why not consider a generic business card that outlines who you are, what your association objectives are, member benefits and how to contact you. This provides your board members with an area to write their details and contact number but it is also a prompter about your organisation’s objectives and membership benefits.

As a result you have a communication card that you don’t have to reprint every time a board member resigns as the information they need to know about your organisation is there with a call to action to visit your website or contact you directly.

It’s important to keep your brand uppermost in the minds of your target market. How you do this need not be expensive but it does require some creativity and a planned approach. Ensure that all those involved with your organisation from staff to board members, existing members and volunteers have the opportunity and the understanding to assist you in building your membership and encouraging greater event participation.

Yvonne McClaren is the Director of Noisy Mynah Studio.

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