Recently, my family took a vacation to Walt Disney World in Florida. On our last day at the parks, we had been at the Magic Kingdom for about 11 hours and we decided to get ice cream to celebrate our last night at Disney.
My daughter was just starting to eat her Mickey premium ice cream when it fell off the stick and landed on the ground. She was devastated and began crying. (Anyone who's enjoyed one of these treats knows how great they are.) My wife and I were already headed back to the concession cart to get her another one when something magical happened.
A Disney cast member saw her crying and asked what was wrong. We explained what had happened, that she was mostly tired, and she would be fine. The cast member told us to wait right there for just a couple of minutes. She returned with another cast member who promptly gave us a voucher for two ice cream bars.
The two cast members made my daughter feel incredibly special with the extra attention and she perked up right away. They talked to my daughter, asked her questions, made her feel better and helped us end our vacation on a high note.
The ice cream falling was not Disney's fault, nor did the cast members have any obligation to ask what was wrong, let alone offer free ice cream. But they did. And they cared.
They saw an opportunity to make a difference and took advantage of it.
What unexpected gestures can you do for your association's members to show them that you care?
- Call them to thank them for coming to your big event last week
- Send them a thank you note for commenting on your blog or Facebook post
- Email them a link to an interesting article that pertains to their business
- Stop by their office and drop off a treat or a free ticket to an upcoming event
- Write a blog post about a member when they receive an award or expand their business
- Connect them with someone who can help them solve a problem
- Congratulate them on being featured in your local business publication
- Introduce a member to other members or potential customers at events
- Ask them questions and look for opportunities to make a difference for their business
Your association is in the service business. Small gestures can genuinely surprise your members and blow them away.
These gestures will have a big impact on your members and can help you increase member retention and generate new member sales.
Of course, make sure you record your interactions with members in your association management software so your entire staff can review previous discussions and help you deliver great service to your members.
Just like I've shared my family's experience at Disney World with you, your members will share their experiences of being a member in your association with their friends and colleagues.
Give them something magical to talk about.