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Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) reports:

2012 has been the first full year in the implementation of our Strategic Plan, which set a bold new direction to enable the Association to best serve its members and the industry now and in the future.

The first three initiatives to achieve the Key Result Area (KRA) goals of the Strategic Plan have been developed, approved and launched. The implementation of these initiatives has refocused Association activities and programs to meet the objectives of the Strategic Plan. We have announced many of the programs under these strategic initiatives. As we go forward you will be hearing more about this dramatic change in direction and the progress made to achieve the KRA goals, and ultimately the long-term strategic objectives.

As we near the end of 2012, let's look beyond the current activities to examine the impact of these first strategic initiatives on our future planning and the objectives of the next wave of initiatives to continue our momentum and achieve all the KRA goals.

New Financial Model

The new financial model puts the Association on the path to achieve and maintain a sustainable and balanced financial model. It reduces our reliance on exhibition revenue, while establishing schedules to bring dues rates and program fees up-to-date and in line with the Consumer Price Index to provide the services members have requested. Looking ahead, the model will generate additional revenue to invest back in the association and its expanded services for the benefit of the membership.

The first $870,000 in additional revenue from the new financial model will be generated in 2013. Staff is developing a report to identify the needs and opportunities to apply this revenue, including:

New services of value in response to the needs identified in the member survey

Investment of greater resources in our priority area of advocacy, including grassroots

A plan to lower costs and increase ROI to members in AEM exhibitions

Rebuilding the net asset reserves

We need to take a long-term view and recognize that an investment is needed to support and improve existing programs while establishing additional services of value.


We have identified advocacy as a top priority and invested significant resources to take a leading role to represent our industry and protect the interests of our members. Our new two-year advocacy plan builds on our successes to date and sets more ambitious goals to more deeply engage members at the grassroots level. To achieve our advocacy goals, resources will be invested to meet one-on-one with members to grow our grassroots support and list of industry advocates. Look also for much more to be done in Ag advocacy leadership in 2013.

Member Engagement

Member engagement is the focus of our membership efforts. It's not about how many members belong to AEM. It's how involved these members are in benefitting from our services, supporting the industry, contributing to standards development, hosting Congressional visits and joining statistics programs, for example. More participation means improved data and value in our programs.

Less time will be spent growing the membership for the sake of growth. Our new membership engagement plan will feature an extensive outreach program to meet with members to understand their needs, match their interests to programs and get them involved at all levels of AEM.

We initiated member orientation meetings on a limited scale for the past few years with impressive results. Members with limited involvement in AEM before our meetings are now among our more active supporters. More than ever, we have an exciting opportunity to improve the effectiveness and relevancy of AEM with this outreach effort.

The early success to implement these strategic initiatives is encouraging, but much work still needs to be done. With the direction and support of our leadership and all AEM members, we are ready to take the next step in 2013. I look forward to working with each of you to get there.

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