Guest post by Sig VanDamme, Chief Customer Officer, and Dan Stark, Director of Product Strategy, NimbleUser

“Innovation is a new or better idea that meets unarticulated needs, new requirements or existing market needs.” - Wikipedia

Innovation is critical to the success of associations and it is essential for association leaders to foster a culture of innovation. For many associations innovation is difficult and elusive because of:

Culture cannot be created but it can be cultivated. As leaders, you can put things into place to foster innovation. Here are a few “Innovation Rules”:

You may create new and innovative programs, but if you aren’t supporting them with innovative processes and technology you may not be as successful. “Race for Relevance” outlines 4 groups of technology efforts, one of which is “Emerging Technologies.” Associations need to experiment and explore new technologies to stay relevant. If you wait to see what is tried and true you will always be outdated and behind.

An AMS built on a true enterprise platform like Salesforce can spark innovation in a variety of ways including:

The primary benefit of an enterprise platform is the ability to “stand on the shoulders of a giant,” leveraging innovation of some of the largest technology and software companies on the market today.

There is a huge difference between a hosted application and a true enterprise cloud application (one that is a true multi-tenant application with unlimited scalability). To deliver speed, mobility, security and more at scale required an enterprise cloud (I.e., thousands of servers in multiple data centers around the world). A big indicator of the TRUE CLOUD is that all customers are on the same version. In the FALSE CLOUD, customers can be on multiple versions.

The network effect is a phenomenon whereby a good or service becomes more valuable when more people use it. A good example of this is the Salesforce AppExchange; developers build apps on the platform because there are so many customers (Over 160,000 with millions of users) using it. Conversely, organizations choose Salesforce because of the number of apps. The platform creates a virtuous cycle for Associations, partners, 3rd party apps and consultants.

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About Nimble AMS:
Nimble AMS is an enterprise association management system based on the world-class Salesforce App Cloud. Visit to learn more.