Member engagement requires a consistent and proactive strategy that helps connect members with relevant content, people, and the benefits they want and need at any given time.
Regular communication with your members will help them see the value in their membership. Email, social, and even phone calls are great ways to keep your members up-to-date with your association. But how often are you reaching out to your members?
How often should you be reaching out? According to the Marketing General Inc 2022 Membership Marketing Benchmarking Report, nearly 50% of associations found that email marketing was the most effective for recruitment and 98% of associations use email marketing for membership renewal. With that in mind, your members receive more than just your email in their inboxes. Limiting the number of times you reach out to your members to 4-8 times a month may be just the sweet spot to keep your association on their minds without overwhelming them. If you're using an email marketing software like Constant Contact or Mailchimp, the built-in analytics dashboard will help you determine your association's ideal number.
If you're looking for more frequent communications with your members, social media may be the proper outlet for that! Posting daily on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and even Instagram is a great way to share insightful articles, event announcements, and appreciation posts. Reaching out by phone has shown to be a successful tactic, especially when it comes to membership renewals.
Creating a communication or content calendar will help keep your association organized and allow you to preplan well in advance. Preplanning themes or following your association's yearly calendar will get you started on building an effective communications calendar that you can use and modify for years to come!
Every member has different expectations from your association. Using marketing analytics when crafting your content and communications will ensure your members get the most out of their membership and are served up the content they want to see! When marketing to your association members, consistent and relevant messaging helps your content resonate further with your audience.
Networking is an equally important part of any professional's journey- especially a young professional. Virtual, in-person, or hybrid, you pick! You members long to meet with one another and network at events. Getting to know other experts in a field of work can help younger professionals learn and discover where their career path can take them, as well as give them advice on how to get there.
Hosting an annual meeting will get members excited each year to gather together, learn, and celebrate the reason they've all joined your association in the first place! Members can also share their incredible experiences with people they know (and on social media). After all, word of mouth is the best form of recommendation! This is also a great way to get members involved in important matters like what type of sessions they'd like to see and choosing a theme for next year's event.
Sense of Community
Creating an online member community has many benefits. Not only can it save your association time and money, but you'll also create a dedicated platform for your member base to interact without getting lost in the digital noise of outside influences. Providing a secure and authentic online platform is an excellent solution for associations looking to build a better member community plan. Online communities are generally self-running, and the user experience is ideal because it's easy for members to interact and engage with one another.
You don't know until you know, and requesting feedback is a surefire way to find out how your members are doing and what they find beneficial from your association. Post-event surveys are a great way to gain valuable insight into whether or not your event was a big hit or a total flop. However, surveys don't just stop at events. Checking in regularly with your members with a Membership Satisfaction Survey is a reliable way to get authentic feedback straight from the source. Your members want to be heard, so give them that chance.
Enhanced Member Benefits
Using member feedback to improve member benefits will help make your members feel heard and valued. Win-win! Your Membership Satisfaction Survey will be filled with valuable data that can assist in assessing your association's member benefits. This is great because it helps take out the guesswork on your end!
Member engagement is critical to any organization. That means your member engagement strategy will be ever-changing. Still, with consistent effort and focusing on the value provided to your members, your members will be reminded why they joined your association in the first place.