Use Competition to Boost Membership, Revenue, and Attendance

Updated: Oct. 12, 2018  |  Categories: National Perspective  

use competition to boost engagement

Creating competition between chapters of the same organization is an effective way to increase engagement, boost loyalty, and spark creativity. As competition for your members’ attention and time increases, maintaining loyalty by providing value becomes crucial to the chapter’s overall well-being. A high level of engagement is one of the qualities that attracts new members.

Here are some ideas to help integrate this technique into your organization’s upcoming chapter events:

Referral contest


Increase membership and encourage current members to reach out to their circle of friends, family, and colleagues to find people who could bring new talents and energy to the chapter.

Increase chapter engagement among current members by encouraging outreach activities like open houses, networking events, and by participating in community philanthropy events.

How it works

Each chapter is assigned a goal that represents 10% of their current membership. New members that join between the pre-determined contest dates count toward the chapter’s goal.

Chapters can encourage their current members to invite prospective new members to meetings or events as guests. Hold brainstorming sessions to discuss ways to attract and create value for new members.


Present the overall winning chapter at the yearly conference as the Referral Contest Winners. Recognize quarterly winners on social media as the fastest growing chapter in the area.

Attendance Contest


Boost current member engagement by encouraging attendance at meetings and events.

How it works

Each chapter resolves to increase attendance at meetings and events by 10-20% over a predetermined amount of time. Create engagement by holding a meeting about innovative ideas regarding how to increase meeting attendance.


All chapters that meet their goal receive recognition at the yearly meeting. The chapter that increases their attendance by the highest percentage receives the designation of “Most Engaged Chapter” for the year.

Here are a few more tips for creating engagement within your chapter:

Send feedback surveys via email after an event, meeting, or contest.

Keep the survey short, and lead the email with “please help us improve by taking this 3-question survey.” Ask for suggestions about future meeting content or contests, request constructive criticism, and be sure to make it clear that all survey responses are anonymous.

Build from success

It’s easy to focus on the negative and spend a lot of time trying to fix the things that require attention. It’s also crucial to build on the successes of your chapter. Pay attention to complimentary survey responses and use those ideas to inspire and motivate members.

Establish a reputation for starting and ending meetings on time

Respecting your chapter members’ time is a sure way to maintain and increase attendance. Set clear expectations for communication and decision making within the meeting. Keeping conversations on track and tabling discussions that require more attention are important parts of facilitating a pleasant and productive meeting.

Harness the power of social media

Motivate chapter members by recognizing their efforts on social media. Take photos at meetings and events to increase the visual appeal of your social media channels. Videos can be very short and still be effective. In fact, people spend about one-third of their online time watching videos.

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