Exploring New Approaches to Association Membership

Exploring New Approaches to Association Membership Recruitment

It’s a simple premise: the more members you have and engage, the wider your association’s reach, and the more relevant you become. 

New members bring fresh perspectives, boosting the community’s networking quality and capacity. To help you attract and retain members, and to maintain robust membership numbers, let’s explore some innovative approaches to member recruitment while avoiding member burnout.

1. Make Them an Offer That’s Hard to Resist

Whether they’re employees, consumers, or even students, the fact is, people are drawn to incentives. 

This principle is widely applied in marketing for sales, and since you’re marketing your association to members, it’s smart to utilize similar strategies for recruitment.

Some examples of incentives to encourage people to become members include:

  • A discount for the first 6 months
  • A free month-long trial
  • An invitation to a member-exclusive event
  • A free learning opportunity with credentials involves

2. Establish a Win-Win Program

People are more likely to do a certain action if there’s a benefit in it for them in return.

This is where an attractive referral program comes in.

Leverage your existing, active membership and ask them to bring in new members. It won’t hurt to be reasonably upfront about your association’s need for growth, and members understand that expanding the community is how you can make it happen.

However, give your members motivation to help by offering something in exchange for their efforts. A giveaway, a gift card, or a discount on their membership dues are all viable options.

3. Nurture Your Social Media Presence

Acquiring new members means getting with the times. That’s how your association becomes in tune with the new generation.

Nowadays, you can’t achieve such relevancy without being present on social media. These online platforms are where your membership prospects spend most of their time, so you need to be there too.

4. Facilitate the Route to Joining Your Association

There may be people whose values and interests align with those of your association, but they turn away from joining because the process is too complex or out of their budget.

If the issue is the former, then you need to simplify your subscription steps as best as you can. For example, provide quick and seamless online registration and payment solutions.

If the problem is that they can’t afford your membership dues, consider offering a free subscription plan that allows basic access to less exclusive or less specialized content and resources.

5. Give Them a Taste of Membership

Helping your prospects experience what it’s like to join your association can be just the push they need to become members.

Here are some ways you can do it:

  • Invitations to members-only events
  • A free trial of membership benefits/perks
  • Hold sponsored local events

Final Words of Encouragement 

Boosting your membership base is crucial for your association to continue growing and staying relevant in our rapidly changing markets and society. It’s vital to regularly revisit membership recruitment strategies and tactics because this is a moving target – what worked today might not work tomorrow.

We encourage you to collaborate with all your team’s staff and stakeholders to find more ways to keep the pipeline of new members healthy. You never know where the next great idea will come from!

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