Innovating Your Membership - Grow and GO
There is one constant in the association world. One thing that no matter what the industry, how big or small or where they're located; associations are constantly trying to grow their membership base. Associations have come to a point where there is a generational shift happening and associations have realized that they have to start recruiting a brand new, tech savvy generation.
There are three important factors associations should be focusing on when beginning on doing so. Those three things, if you were to ask Felisha W. Battle, formerly of National PTA, now consultant, are Message, Story, and Translation. You may be wondering how you can utilize all three of these things to grow your membership base.
Message - Consider Your Mission Statement
When was the last time you really looked at your mission statement? Do you even know your association's mission statement off the top of your head? In theory, your mission statement is supposed to be all encompassing of who your association is and what you are trying to do. If you don’t know your mission statement, how do you expect potential members to know it, or even care about knowing it?
Attempt to get your mission statement down to 140 characters. I know that sounds difficult, and you may be wondering how you're supposed to cover everything your association is about in something that can be tweeted. But that’s the point. Your revamped mission statement of 140 characters is something that will be easy for member and non-members alike to remember.
Story - Reality is the Best Policy
Potential members want to see the reality behind what your association is producing. We live in a world today where reality is everything; from reality TV to the celebrity gossip magazines that are pulling your attention in every checkout aisle of the grocery store. Utilize this time, play to the fact that reality is something that is resonating now, more than ever before.
So, take real life testimonials from your members. Why should potential members care about registering for your upcoming education course? Just because you told them to? Play to the reality of the situation and use a testimonial from a current member who signed up for an education course, what they learned, and what cool things they are doing now with what they learned from the course. Then, why not grow your membership base and take a giant leap into 2017. Take that pen and paper testimonial and publish it to somewhere like YouTube, so now you have a short promotional piece that can be used at any time. Two birds, one stone.
Translation - Sell The CEO
This might sound odd, but it’s true. Think about it, the potential memberships you are trying to gain want to see a CEO or group of board members that reflect the ideals and missions of the association. This is giving your mission statement that you’ve worked so hard on upgrading, a face. The key is to find the perfect mix between personal and professional. We live in a reality where to drive home your message to potential members means sharing personal things about your CEO. Those potential members want to know how the CEO can be relatable to them and the drive the cause of the association.
Try these tips moving forward in 2017 in gaining your membership base and creating a stronger bond with the current members you have now! Be sure to check out Felisha’s full session she ran surrounding this topic!