By Pam Sefrino, National Sales Manager
Do you really know what’s happening in your membership? What are your members truly interested in? What events or workshops have the attended in the past year? How long have they been a member for that matter, and why do they stay? And, how can you use this information to help improve retention and even generate new members sales?
Many business associations and chambers of commerce abandon what I like to call “member discovery” because it’s just too much work, it’s not automated and it requires a ton of data entry. Some associations may have the capability of automatically tracking member participation, subscriptions or interest groups through their web site integrated with their membership management software, but many more do not.
Also, those that do have the ability may still not have a process in place for effective information collection and use because the staff has not been adequately trained. More often than not, associations who are tracking this information actually have no idea how to get it out of their membership management system to help them achieve their goals.
Missed opportunities abound for demonstrating membership value and increasing retention and sales.
Here are a few things you should consider tracking if you are not:
- Reason(s) for joining
- Their interests (business and personal)
- Committees, groups, communications they would be interested in or are participating on
- Business goals, what they are looking to achieve
- Date the business started
- What events they attend regularly
- What, if any, events or programs they have sponsored
- What other groups and organizations they are involved in outside of your association
- Their social media outlets
How do these things apply to membership value? With this type of information being collected regularly, your association is now able to:
- Show members what they’ve invested in the association in terms of dollars
- Share with members what they’ve received…what’s in it for them!
- Show their participation at events, on committees, at workshops etc.
- Identify trends with individual or groups of members
- Show referrals and connections made between people
- Connect people based on activity, interests and relationships
And so much more.
And if you can show this to your members through one simple report that you can send them periodically throughout the year, even better!
Associations today need to take a proactive, ongoing approach to demonstrating membership value for retention, and it all begins with effective tracking and then sharing of results. Knowledge is power!
Pam Sefrino is the National Sales Manager for software and technology sales at WebLink International. With more than 10 years of senior level association experience, Pam, with the rest of the WebLink team, is focused on helping membership organizations to remain relevant and easily gain and use valuable member and customer "intelligence" to help streamline operations and communications and create long-lasting member value, increased retention, new member sales and non-dues revenue.