Episode 99 • 07/11/2024

David Chavern, President & CEO of the Consumer Brands Association (CBA), on Storytelling and How the Trade Association Business Has Changed

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How do you tell the story of your industry? How do you gain the trust of your members so that they have confidence in your advocacy and services?

In this episode of Associations Thrive, host Joanna Pineda interviews David Chavern, President & CEO, of the Consumer Brands Association (CBA). 

David discusses:

  • How CBA members are the makers of almost everything that you buy in the grocery store and the drug store.
  • How even though it’s a mature industry, there are new CPG (consumer packaged goods) start-ups and new products coming out every day.
  • How David became introduced to trade associations through the U.S. Chamber of Commerce where he spent many years working; at one point he was Chief Operating Officer.
  • How as CEO of a trade association, you strive to get to a point where CEOs of your member companies trust that you understand what they worry about.
  • How David loves touring factory floors.
  • The importance of getting a depth of engagement from staff at all levels of member companies, so when the dues bill comes in, the membership renewal is a given.
  • How CBA membership is growing, thanks in part to their successful public policy work and their events.
  • How they hold a CPG (Consumer Packaged Goods) Summit every year, this is the premier summit for executives from the top companies in the industry.
  • One of the biggest challenges for CBA is telling the story of the industry, including sharing how they are the biggest manufacturing industry in the U.S.
  • How one of CBA’s goals is to pick out the hardest challenges that their industry is facing and then “run at those very hardest things.”
  • How the trade association business has changed because of the explosion of media.
  • How associations need to revamp their events and conferences every year or risk having stale events that people stop attending.
  • How members want authentic communications from their trade association.


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About Associations Thrive

Associations Thrive podcast is hosted by Joanna Pineda, CEO & Chief Troublemaker at Matrix Group International. Joanna’s personal mission and the mission of Matrix Group is to help associations and nonprofits increase membership, generate revenue and thrive in the digital space. 

We believe that every association has a unique mission and unique story that demonstrates how they’re serving their members, impacting their industry, and ultimately changing the world. Every guest is an association Chief Executive, Executive Director or President. We’re here to help amplify their stories so all associations can learn and thrive, together.

If you and your organization have a great story,  apply to be on Associations Thrive!