5 Effective Strategies to Grow Your Association Memberships

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You might start to feel like your organization’s membership level has plateaued recently, and there’s nothing you can do to make that figure go up.

Growing your membership is essential if your organization is to thrive over time, so it’s important to keep trying new and exciting methods to get people joining your membership program in droves.

Let’s take a look at 5 effective strategies for growing your association memberships!

1. Get regular feedback from current members

It doesn’t matter how many new members you get if your old ones keep leaving. One of the keys to growing your overall membership numbers is to keep your existing members happy so that they continue to renew their membership long into the future.

These members should be the foundation that stays with your association for years to come.

As such, it’s essential to survey your current members regularly to find out what they do and don’t like about your service. If there are wide trends in your association suggesting you should make changes, do it. The happier your current members are, the more likely they are to recommend your associations to newcomers.

2. Automate the membership renewal process

If you use high-end and reputable programs like this software to manage memberships, then you should be able to automate the renewal process for your existing members, making it easier to retain them and keep membership levels up. You might be able to use auto-renewals or auto-reminders to your advantage here too.

If someone is already a member of your association, there’s probably no need for a human to vet them and get involved in the renewal process, slowing it down. Make the renewal process as fast and as easy as possible for existing members, as this encourages them to stay.

3. Try promotional pricing and limited-time offers

FOMO plays a major part in purchase decisions for a lot of people, so be sure to take advantage of this natural human instinct when it comes to your pricing. If there are holiday seasons or special events happening in the world, run limited-time promotional offers where your membership is discounted.

While it won’t work on everyone, people who are considering joining your association may be pushed over the edge by a one-off discount price. After joining, if you impress them enough, they’ll probably be willing to pay the full price when renewal season comes around.

4. Use referral programs

Referral programs encourage engagement from your current members and incentivize them to promote your association to non-members who may be interested. By offering rewards, offers, and discounts to your members who refer newcomers, you effectively get them to advertise your association for you.

Word-of-mouth is the single biggest way to increase your membership numbers, with 27% of people joining associations due to word-of-mouth recommendations. Referral programs are easy to way to encourage organic word-of-mouth conversations about your membership association that get the ball rolling.

5. Advertise where your members are

It’s rule #1 of advertising – know where your audience is and promote there. Whether it’s physical spaces like airport lounges and business centers, or online spaces like LinkedIn and niche industry blogs, it’s essential to know where your members hang out and direct your advertising in that direction.

It’s better to use targeted advertising in specific locations than it is to cover too much ground in the hopes of interesting a few people here and there. Think carefully about your promotional campaigns.

Growing your membership is never easy, especially in these turbulent times where people are careful with their hard-earned cash. However, hopefully, these tips will help you to improve your overall membership rates going forward.

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Adam Tanton

Adam Tanton

Adam is a partner in B2BNN with over 15 years experience in the enterprise technology field.