I was recently asked by a volunteer, “What is the best way to grow membership?” My honest answer was there is no answer. There is no silver bullet to association membership development. It is the thousand little things you do to provide and articulate your value to members that will help you grow.
Here are some great ideas you can incorporate into your “thousand things” provided by ISAE membership professionals:
What is something you learned on the job that every membership professional should know?
- Talk to the “common” member, not just the very involved. They have different experiences and needs from the association.
- Talk to your members, not at them.
- People join people.
- Not joining is not a “no” to joining. It is just a matter of redeveloping your message and trying again.
- Provide value and they will renew.
- Know your members well.
- Not everyone is a fit for your association and that is okay.
- A handwritten thank you note is powerful.
- Show your members you are listening to and remembering them.
Essential Tools for Membership Recruitment and Retention
- People who are passionate about the association are your best recruitment tool.
- Your team. Everyone should be responsible for membership development, not just one person.
- Member satisfaction survey.
- Google Webmaster Tools.
- Segmenting your membership and communicating to the needs of each segment.
- Peer-to-peer personal phone calls.
- Continuous engagement efforts from day one.
Do you have any other advice for fellow membership professionals?