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Hi Diane — Thanks for asking. I have added some minor updates to this piece. The basic information is still valid. The one mistake that I continue to see organizations make is viewing MGM programs as a total solution to their membership challenges instead of one additional tool to use in their recruitment portfolio. Tony
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Hey Tom, thanks for the comment.

I guess my feeling about the case you describe is about the same. And I’m with you in that I tend to have a fair number of tabs open at any one time.

If I (the developer) force the link to open a new window or tab you will be happy because that is what you would have wanted anyway. But for another person who only opens new tabs or windows when they choose to (via CTRL + click, for example) I have taken away their option of just leaving my site without a new tab being created. Unless there is a compelling business reason to do so, and I’m confident that opening a new tab accomplishes that goal, I prefer not to.

I feel that people who like lots of tabs (my boss is the champion of this) are probably pretty knowledgeable about how to do this, and relying on them to manage their own tabby experience is pretty reasonable. But this is just a feeling. Someone should conduct a study!!

If links never, ever, ever, open in new tabs, we will all learn how to make them do so when we want to. If some do and some don’t, you’ll be annoyed when they don’t (but you wanted them to) and I’ll be annoyed when they do (but I didn’t want them to). And neither of us will have any idea which it will be until we’ve already clicked and are both annoyed.

For me, the only exceptions would be when the page is in a state where data the user has entered in a form would be lost by clicking away from the page.

My co-worker Steve (who is way smarter than I am, by the way) disagrees with me about all of this and sides with you. I wonder if he’ll rise to this bait.

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What are your thoughts about having social media icons on a webpage open to a new window? (i.e. the Facebook icon on a page opens to the brand’s Facebook page).

In my mind, this could be a special use case as the user knows that he will be going away from the site. And I’m actually annoyed when I click on a social media icon and the action opens in my current window. I know my browser has a Back button, but I rarely use it and typically have 10-15 windows open in my browser. So, I don’t mind and actually prefer if a click opens to another window.

Thanks for your thoughts on this use case…

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The market is the perfect place for getting leadership and maintaining their product with customer. The membership is very important for making their position in their market.
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Over the course of the past 16 years of consulting, I’ve had the opportunity to work with hundreds of associations, ranging in size from zero staff (all volunteer) to over 700.

Clients and colleagues often ask me what the trends are in associations these days, especially as they relate to data management. Here are the trends I see across all sizes and types of associations. Click here to read the rest of the article.

Of course, if you’re already on my announcements list, you would have received notice of this new article right in your email box. Not signed up yet? Click here to sign up.

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