Use Incentives to Increase Association Chapter Member Participation

Updated: Dec. 8, 2020  |  Categories: Membership  

Use Incentives to Increase Association Chapter Member Participation

You may be finding it harder than usual to get people to engage with your chapter. Association chapter members aren’t as focused on your chapter as you’d like, potential members don’t seem to be interested in joining, and you’re working harder than ever to make your chapter appealing to both groups.

There are so many things going on in people’s lives right now that your chapter may not hold the importance for them it has in the past or that it should. Have you thought about how you can creatively focus them back on the chapter and all it can offer them?

What if you could increase member participation by turning engagement into a game, with easy things members can do that don’t take a lot of time, for them, or you?

Using gamification to increase association member participation

The concept is simple:  suggest things members can do to win points. In a month, or however long you decide, the one, or ones, with the most points receive a prize, perhaps chapter swag, a resume review, or free admission to your next conference. 

Choose activities strategically, to help remind members all your chapter offers. They’ll remember what they love about your chapter to reengage themselves and perhaps bring in new members.

5 ways to increase association member participation

Provide the most comments on a forum thread. What relevant, interesting questions would your association chapter members find the time to answer? Avoid questions that can be answered with a simple yes or no. Instead, ask questions that make them think, like:

  • What do they wish they’d known when they first started their career?
  • How do they stay organized and focused when much of their daily lives is online and virtual?
  • If they could have lunch with one person in their field, who would it be and why?


Share events on social media. Association chapter members are some of your best marketing channels. Ask them to share your monthly meetings, educational events, member stories, and more, on social media. Have them tag your chapter, so you can easily follow what’s being posted.

Bring guests to events. Even right now, where the majority of what we do is remote, members can still invite guests to attend. Include space on the registration form for guests to note who told them about the event.

Get guests to join. What better way to bring in new members than have existing members ask them?

Provide micro volunteering opportunities. Consider breaking larger tasks into smaller ones and giving members points for completing them, such as writing a blog post about a sponsor, fundraising for your chapter scholarship, or researching golf courses for your hybrid golf event. Activities that get members involved but don’t take much time can be just what your association chapter members have time for.

Give them the details they need. Whatever you choose, if it involves providing information, give your association chapter members the details they need to tell the right story. Provide a website link or create talking points that include details describing why these events are important to members and guests.

Even with all your members are experiencing right now, it’s likely they still want to help and engage with your chapter. Give them multiple, easy-to-manage and track options, and you’ll be surprised at the connections that result.

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