5 Membership Marketing Ideas for Succeeding in the New Normal

Updated: Dec. 8, 2020  |  Categories: Membership  

5 Membership Marketing Ideas for Succeeding in the New Normal

It’s far from business as usual when it comes to supporting your members. They’re unemployed, or maybe furloughed, working less than fulltime, figuring out how to pay their bills, etc. You’re probably also seeing more highly stressed association chapter members. Association chapter members can use your services more than ever, whether that’s your job board, forum, educational series, certification opportunities or networking events, to decrease that stress and make themselves more valuable to current employers or the marketplace in general.

How are you getting out your message and all you offer?

Membership marketing is even more important than usual to ensure the connection members have to your association chapter and your industry. Chapters should be reviewing their current association member engagement strategies and adjusting as needed, repositioning messages to remind current association chapter members and potential members how and why to take advantage of what the chapter offers.

Once you understand your audiences’ needs, determine the best ways to show you can meet those needs. Here are some best practices to consider incorporating into your membership marketing strategy to strengthen and expand your message.

5 Membership Marketing Ideas

Prioritize your website design and content. How should your navigation work, so visitors easily find what they need? What should be on the home page? What colors and formatting can you use to draw people’s attention to specific parts of a page? Don’t forget your content. What you say is just as important as your design; use the right language to describe all you offer.

Create email campaigns. Show, using engaging language, graphics, and examples, the value of your organization and what you want them to know about your chapter or an upcoming event. Include reminders of similar events (see below) and links to member stories (more below) to further engage readers. Consider segmenting your audience to decrease email fatigue by sending specific groups only the content they’ll respond best to.  

Showcase past events. Even though the format of your events may change, showing members and potential members what you’ve offered is a great way to engage right now, especially if your topics and speakers are relevant in our current environment. Take networking, for example, which could, right now, be more valuable to members than your monthly meetings. Discuss previous networking events, while also describing how your association chapter members network in our current environment, such as in your forum, event breakout sessions or socially distanced and outdoors.

Utilize member stories.  What better way to engage than having your association members talk about why your association chapter is a great fit for them, even during the COVID-19 pandemic? Provide questions for members to answer in a video you could post on your website or send in an email communication. Ask why they joined or what they enjoy being on your board. Since most chapters are not meeting in person, give association members the details they need to successfully record themselves.

Gamify your recruitment. Turn association chapter recruiting into a challenge for your current members, by providing small, easy things they can accomplish in return for points. The person who brings in the most new members in a month, for example, or the one who shares the most about a particular topic in a forum thread or on social media, gets a prize, such as a chapter sweatshirt, a discount to a future meeting, or a review of their resume by a board member.

There are many ways to better connect with members and potential members. Figure out what will work best for your audience right now and incorporate some of those new ideas into your pandemic association member engagement strategy.


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