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Professional Organizations
nym_fan




msg:777563
 3:29 am on Jun 9, 2002 (gmt 0)

I have been looking at a variety of different Internet Professional Organizations and was curious if they are really worth the time and money! Is there one organization out there that one should belong to? Would joining one help with my credibilty?

FYI: I run two websites: a web design site and a web site promotion site.

 

Marcia




msg:777564
 3:45 am on Jun 9, 2002 (gmt 0)

Welcome back, nym_fan, haven't seen you around in a while.

Some swear by the local Chamber of Commerce, and I understand that some have monthly mixers that are open to non-members, too.

Another option to consider is checking into some local meetings of Toastmasters International [toastmasters.org], a great organization that develops important skills and is known for being effective for networking among business people.

I'm not sure about an industry-specific group, that seems a little like preaching to the choir, though with your dual skill-set you may find that you run into people who lack skills you have and alliances could be formed. Even that, I'd check into them on a local level.

Backtracking to your question about credibility, the mileage may vary with how impressed people may be, but it can't hurt to have an HTML Writers Guild logo on a site, and W3C validation shows a little extra effort; it's surprising it isn't seen more.

I'd think memberships that demonstrate participation in your local community might convey a civic-mindedness that could encourage trust. FWIW, my car mechanic isn't in a professional organization that I know of, but I've always been impressed that he's an active member of the local C of C, even to taking on organizing efforts for major events like parades. It makes him seem a cut above, having that level of community interest.

nobodyiswritingthis




msg:777565
 7:06 am on Jun 9, 2002 (gmt 0)

One group I really like is the IWA (international webmaster's association). They kind of remind me of Toastmasters, but are designed specifically for webmasters and web developers. They have local chapters in most US cities, and even offer certifications, and tech support. Also looks great on a resume.

nym_fan




msg:777566
 1:40 am on Jun 10, 2002 (gmt 0)

Thanks Marcia.

I have been so busy lately getting a new website up and running-that is why I was asking. I was looking for an on-line related organization. I know that words/actions speak louder than an official logo/icon on a website but there are folks who like to see "how professional" you are and I also want to network some.

FYI: When I am at my mechanic, I look to see if he has any certificates, but I go to him because of his reputation and word of mouth. I get the closest to word of mouth online is linking-which is what I am doing.

I will look into Toastmasters, etc

Marcia




msg:777567
 2:04 am on Jun 10, 2002 (gmt 0)

I'm actually a member of a couple on line, I just haven't gotten around to putting anything up. One of them gives me a PR5 link, which is nice, but not the reason at all. There's an excellent email group involved I like a lot. We can do site reviews for each other and exchange information about certain topics that can't be done elsewhere, simply because there is no other place dealing with that sector. Displaying membership isn't required; however, to do so would encourage clientele from one grouping and discourage others because of the nature of it. Associations can tend to brand us to a degree.

One consideration with displaying a membership logo is linking out from it. Some of us limit the number of outbound links we'll have on the index page of our site, and it's not a bad idea to have the graphic displayed, but have the links out on a separate site page set aside to give information about you, the company and/or affiliations and associations. It's a combination of a Page Rank consideration and also, not wanting to send site visitors off right away.

nym_fan




msg:777568
 2:25 am on Jun 10, 2002 (gmt 0)

Branding...something I did not think about. I was thinking more about the average visitor who might need a little extra nudge in say choosing my site/product over someone else's.

Good point about the link,had not thought about that either....

Total Hosting




msg:777569
 2:45 am on Jun 10, 2002 (gmt 0)

Marcia - What are some of the other online groups?

FYI - My company is a member of the Long Island Webmaster's Guild in NY.

It's good to network, as well as just let off some steam.

I am also a member of the local chamber of commerce. Which helps drive business through networking.

Pete

Marcia




msg:777570
 4:13 am on Jun 10, 2002 (gmt 0)

Pete, unfortunately unless it's restricted to the "majors" like HTML Writers Guild and Graphic Artists Guild, I think we'd have a problem with mentioning other organizations, simply to avoid the problems we'd have with the moderator needing to do edits on posts, with the potential that could exist for people dropping URLs to promote their organizations and/or publicize their sites - or their friends'.

nym_fan, the one I referenced happens to be a webmasters group of a religious orientation. Having the logo up could indicate I wouldn't work on "other" types of sites, which might be the case with some, but isn't with me. That's not why I haven't put it up, which is a time issue, but it could be branding when thought of that way, which could work for against depending on the particular webmaster's goals and preferences.

I think probably a good way to find them would be on webmaster sites themselves, and then checking further. Or better yet, checking the categories at Yahoo or ODP to locate organizations.

nobodyiswritingthis




msg:777571
 7:32 pm on Jun 10, 2002 (gmt 0)

Hey Marcia,
I was under the impression that the HTML writer's guild was part of the IWA. Could be wrong. No biggy. Have fun.

JayC




msg:777572
 8:28 pm on Jun 10, 2002 (gmt 0)

"Nobody" is right; the HTML Writer's Guild merged with IWA last year. They're still using the HWG name for those operations, but they're essentially one organization.

By the way, nobodyiswritingthis, I'd be interested in knowing it what ways the IWG reminds you of Toastmasters.

Marcia




msg:777573
 8:44 pm on Jun 10, 2002 (gmt 0)

>HTML writer's guild was part of the IWA

Merged, and HWG has been around for quite a while, they're not Joe's Webmaster Group at Tripod :)

I'm in a few that had no cost involved, but to be honest, I've never given thought to them regarding credibility. It might be worth considering. I've only had one person ask for references, which I gave, but now that the issue of credibility has come up, it might not be a bad idea to mention on a site that references are available upon request.

nobodyiswritingthis




msg:777574
 12:22 am on Jun 11, 2002 (gmt 0)

notariety and member loyalty mainly, thay's it.

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