The results are in!
Over the last year, we have held various round tables, an open discussion event, and sent out surveys. We’ve compiled the answers and sharing the feedback we’ve received on how we can better improve our chapter to meet your needs as an IIDA member!
Average demographic for the surveys:
What is the time you are willing to travel for an event & are you open to signature events (BLB, Gala, Annual Dinner, etc) alternating between city centers?
When asked about travel times to events. Most people indicated that locally, not more than 30 minutes. When it comes to signature events (GALA, Golf Outing, BLB), the majority of participants indicated that they would be happy with traveling 1.5hr to 2hrs for these events. This lends for signature events to happen at newer venues local to each city center, and alternating yearly between city centers. Most participants welcomed the chance of alternating between city centers for these Signature events because it opens up more venue locations, and opportunities to network with and visit alternate city centers.
What is the cost you are willing to pay for events:
Participants were somewhat mixed when it came to paying event ticket costs. While we understand the costs associated with one’s membership fees, there are additional costs that the chapter covers for events. These costs cannot dip into our normal chapter operating costs, and therefore must be covered for events. This is where ticket pricing comes into play. These costs include things such as venue rental, food & beverages, any supplies needed, travel costs for speakers, pricing for group sales of special tours & workshops, etc. We try to offset these costs and offer low ticket prices by obtaining sponsorships for the event themselves. Sometimes that is not always the case, and thus, we must price tickets accordingly to fully cover event costs.
When discussed with participants, they felt the following were appropriate event ticket prices.
What is the biggest reason for not attending an event:
We wanted to better understand the reasons for attending & not attending events. We asked survey participants what the biggest factors in not attending IIDA events. Most said that the distance to event venues and other obligations outside of work were the biggest reasons. We encourage all our members to attend our signature events. We understand the alternating city centers will be challenging with these events, but we are going to try our best as a board to offer various opportunities to be involved and attend events outside of preferred travel time.
What is the best day and time for attending an event:
To piggyback off the reason for not attending events, we asked what the best time of day was and the day of the week was for hosting events. While the time of day can vary, the second-most answered time of day was evenings. Thursday’s topped the list as the best day of the week.
What are some current favorite events of yours?
Topping the list of the survey participants favorite events were: Pop-up and Tours, followed by Educational (CEU’s, Lectures, Business Development, Advocacy, etc.)
What are some events that you would like to see more of?
Our survey participants felt strongly about providing more Pop-up & Tours along with Professional Development events.
What is the best way to keep you informed?
Participants were asked what the best way to be informed was. Topping the list at 44% was emails. We have just revamped our eblasts, now called “The Designer Download”, and we’re going to be providing links to all types of information you may need. Social media was next on the list, but we know with the different platform algorithms, we cannot guarantee you will always see our content. The best way to make sure we are on your feed is to follow us, interact (like, comment, and share regularly), and even follow the #iidavawv hashtag. These methods will ensure you see our latest social media posts! Next up we have the website; look, we get it, the 2010s are gone!. Did you know our current website was created in 2012?! WOW!
Well, lucky for you, we were just awarded the IIDA Catalyst Grant. What is the Catalyst Grant, you may ask? IIDA Headquarters created a program to support chapters however they need. IIDA wants to help fund programs that drive our chapter forward, enrich the organization, and promote our mission of advancing excellence in interior design. We applied for the grant back in October and were notified of the award before the holidays.
With a new website, we will be revamping our homepage and subsequent pages for easier access to information and upcoming events. We also will be providing an exclusive IIDA member-only side, which will help connect all of our members across the state to each other. This is going to be huge for our local community! This member-exclusive content will have a manufacturer and vendor database, easy to find links to industry resources and a chat forum for you to ask questions or post awesome pictures and links to industry-related items! Have a project in Baltimore but not sure of local codes or things to look out for? You can post on the chat forum and other members with experience in that municipality can help you get the information you’d be looking for!
Check out our proposal, which was accepted and awarded by headquarters!
How much advanced time do you need to be made aware of our events?
Are you free? That is the question everyone gets concerning events. We wanted to know how much time you need in advance to get our events on your calendar and coordinate with your busy schedules! Well, the results show that it’s pretty even across the board from 1 month to 2 weeks prior. We’re trying our best to get our event dates set so you can get them penciled in! The Designer Download has a graphic, which is constantly being updated, for you to save/screenshot/copy/whatever you need, to get some dates into your calendar. We keep our website as up to date as possible, but our NEW SITE, will be even better! We’re going to have this stuff right on the homepage for you! No more clicking thru web pages, that’ll be a thing of the past. Until we have the new site, save that graphic in the newsletter & lookout for the updated ones to be sent out!
What is the biggest value you see from IIDA & membership with our organization?
We have heard it time and time again. What is the biggest value that you get out of your IIDA membership? Networking was the top response from our participants. Network. Network. Network. The world has changed drastically over the last decade. We are more connected than ever through social media and the online world.
We are going to bring even more value to your membership by holding more curated events that you’ve asked for. Also, our new website will have an IIDA member-only log-in side to it where you will have industry resources at a click of a button. Not sure who your Koroseal rep is? We got you! We’ll have an online database for these contacts that you need to make your job more efficient. Also, we’re going to be rolling out a chat/forum feature for you to connect with the members throughout the state. Maybe you have a project in Baltimore and this is the first time you’ve worked with that municipality. Post on the forum to see if someone else has worked with the local government and they can either give you tips or send you links to what you may need for your project.
What would your interest level be for a mobile app, website, or chat forum?
Why did we choose to submit a grant for a new website? Well, you asked for it! We asked what the interest level would be for a mobile app, website, or chat group and over 2/3 of the participants were somewhat to extremely interested!
Hey IIDA community. You have been heard!
We, as a chapter, are forever improving and gaining the feedback we need to keep our community strong and growing. It takes a village. Spread the word about upcoming events, sign up for our newsletter (click this link and scroll down the page to “Subscribe to our mailing list”), send us an email to become involved or coordinate with us on either something you saw that was cool or an event idea you may have! Together we can grow and make our community stronger and more connected.
For full survey responses and questions, check out this link: 2019_IIDA VAWV Chapter Survey
If you have any questions or comments, reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org