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Answering Your Membership Questions #2

Updated: 5 days ago

🎤 Engagement, value propositions, decline, oh my! I’m receiving more questions than ever about #membership so I’ve started doing something new—a live Q&A to answer as many Q’s as possible.


Below are some of the questions I heard during our last conversation.

Let me know what you think about the Live Q&A’s and blogs, and if you like them, I’ll keep doing them!


BONUS: Curious about how I responded to the question, “How should we prepare our organization and our members for a recession?” Watch the full Q&A at the bottom of this post!


“How can we better measure engagement, and how can associations get members to be engaged so they find value and renew?”

Engagement is a super hot topic right now… First and foremost, remember that engagement is NOT participation. Let go of that myth.


You can be very actively involved but not really be happy about being there. If you are truly engaged, you have a positive attitude and you’re excited. You are passionate about the organization and its mission, and you’re ready and willing to support.


As such, engagement is partially attitude and an emotional connection to the organization.

So, start measuring engagement in terms of relationships, connections, and attitudes toward your association, and then seek to improve those metrics.


“Did your global survey include any questions or insights on popular member benefits? If so, what did you find?”

Our team didn’t ask about popular member benefits on the Global Membership Health Study, but we did ask about what people want from their membership experiences.


What people want more than ever are opportunities to LEARN, LEAD, and MAKE A DIFFERENCE.


And keep in mind, this is what we heard from members of all ages and career stages.

LEARN – Members express a strong desire to use their associations to learn new skills, many of which are changing within their industries. Be relevant and timely with your learning opportunities!


LEAD – Members, particularly young people, want the opportunity to be in governance, to volunteer and acquire leadership skills as well as be in leadership roles. Include young people in your leadership development strategy. Remember, they’re the future of your association!


MAKE A DIFFERENCE – Let’s face it… The world is a bit of a mess these days, more than ever it seems. Members want to be a part of making a difference, both individually and collectively through your association. Really think through how your association’s mission is helping members feel connected with a collective cause to impact the world!


“Our student membership is free, but we aren’t seeing enrollment. How can we best market our association?”

Free is not a ticket to engagement. Free is just free.


If we’re doing something discounted or free, you still need to be putting in the work to build the relationships.


This means you need to create room for these individuals to actively participate and contribute to the organization. I see too many organizations out there who say, “Gosh, we’re doing all of this free stuff for young people,” but when young people raise their hands and say, “I want to volunteer!” or inquire about how to be involved in a more significant way, it’s as if the young people are reminded they belong at the kiddie table like at your family holiday gatherings.

You cannot keep this segmentation up any longer if you want happy, engaged younger members! Your community needs to be a community for all equally.


Register now to join us on Thursday, April 27 at 3:30 p.m. (ET) for our next conversation!


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