Debugging Your Members’ Experience

Smooth The Path

Member retention rates are falling, or perhaps they just are not rising. Or your new member renewal rate is far below the average member renewal rate. Or members join but they do not move up in the engagement hierarchy. Once again talk to members.

Delivering Super Low-Cost Exceptional Member Experiences

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A delightful member experience doesn’t have to flashy, highly technological, or expensive which is good because your smaller association or your chapters may not be able to afford expensive options. A very pleasant member experience can just be human.

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Having Difficulty Defining Your Association Value Proposition?

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How well can your association articulate your value prop? Defining member value and what differentiates you from other organizations in your industry is often a challenge – and, it can’t be developed by a group on K Street. IStock/Credit:szepy.

Understand the Three Professional Stages to Improve Association Value

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Here is another way to look for gaps in your association’s value proposition. The results of years of member research show that high-performing professionals tend to move through three stages during their career. Related: How new members are prompted to engage.

The Association Value Trigger Point Explained by New Member Background

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When I speak about a way to engage new members early in their membership by using an Association Value Trigger Point (AVTP), association professionals often ask me if their association should have just one AVTP or should we have many for our different members?

Potential Members Are Not Hearing About Associations Anymore

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Why don’t people join associations anymore? Well, it could be because they do not hear about your association. When I talk to members, the vast majority say they become aware of the association because someone told them about it.

Navigating Each Association’s Two-Way Trust Street

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Associations oscillate between two different trust states with members. We spend time building trust with our members, and then when we ask for something from members, we exchange that trust. There are so many things that build members’ trust in an association.

The New Member Engagement Rule of Three

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There is a short window of opportunity to engage new members. Most new members join with high hopes. During the first few days of their membership, new members are inherently very engaged. We only have 3 days or 3 weeks to engage some new members.

You Need to Know Your Association’s Value Trigger Point

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Ask engaged members when they realized the value of the association and many could tell you the exact moment. The moment new members understand the value of the association is the Association’s Value Trigger Point (AVTP).

Association Silos Can Create Broken Promises

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But silos do something else that is perhaps more insidious (or equally as insidious), they can allow one department to set expectations with members that another department fails to deliver on. Unless these two groups work extremely collaboratively, members see a disconnect.

Associations Do Not Sell Snake Oil

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This gap in trust creates an opportunity for associations. Many associations have competitors who engage in spam or even scam-like practices. Members don’t want to be scammed. When it come to trust, I favor showing members rather than telling members.

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Why New Members Actually Join

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We think new members join for the professional development and networking, but a new member joins for one of these reasons: They believe in the cause. Someone they respect is a member. They know someone who is getting a lot out of being a member.

The Most Frustrating Thing New Members Do

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One of the most frustrating dynamics for association staff is noticing that some members join but then never take another single action. You may be surprised to learn this super frustrating for new members as well. Members join with the intention of engaging.

These Are Not the Most Read Articles But They Are the Most Impactful For the Association Community

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Over on Association Success, my friend Arianna Rehak crowd-sourced a great idea (here is her post). So in a very unscientific way, I tallied all of these discussions in my mind, and these are the most impactful articles of 2017: Is It Day 1 or Day 2 for Associations?

Who is Solving the Member Engagement Problem?

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“Who is helping to solve the member engagement problem?”, ”, an association CEO and big thinker in our industry asked me yesterday. Many indicators point to a member engagement problem for associations. When members had more time in their days.

The Real Value of Associations for Members

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What is the real value of associations for members? I have heard members say, “I felt very uncertain, even scared, about taking the next step in my career but, the association helped me be confident.” ” I feel valued. .

What Your Members Need Most Right Now

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What else do you members need from you right this minute? Right now your members may need to learn how to work: From home. Right now your members may need to learn how to prepare for: a recession. Right now your members may crave: Support.

Why You Might Want to Add an Online Summit to Your Association Innovation List

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The biggest problem with most annual conferences is that most members cannot go. What percent of your members make it to the conference each year? Which means that 70 to 90 percent of our members do not experience one of the top benefits the association has to offer.

How Association Members Really Evaluate Value

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Our thoughts around value are changing. In fact, our perceptions of value are becoming more sophisticated. Some experts define value as quality + price. There’s a new definition for value. Value is one part solution, another part story, another part experience.

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How Much Email is Too Much Email for Members?

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Successful new member onboarding programs include an email series comprised of messages written specifically with new members in mind. When I explain this in presentations, a participant usually asks, “our members are saying we send too many emails, isn’t this way too much?”

3 Myths: The Reasons New Members Join Associations

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Why do our members join? Myth #1: Members Join for Our Benefits. Members join to go to the annual conference. Sometimes members join to gain access to a benefit , but rarely. Much more often members do not know a thing about the association when they join.

The Formula for Member Engagement

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The new member engagement rule of three. Who are the Stephanies in your association? The post The Formula for Member Engagement appeared first on Smooth The Path. Related: . Good moods are contagious at conferences.

Opportunities for Association Certification

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Based on my experience, I can’t imagine my GPA would have been lower if I had been admitted after submitting the first set of SAT scores. Given our member’s worries, I imagine developing an exam that suits every title, and every organization is difficult.

Low Member Engagement is not Necessarily a Sign of Unhappiness

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Members mirror these same feelings. Members are most satisfied when they are allowed to engage at the level they want to engage at. Some feel pressure maybe even guilt to become more engaged and members say they do not like that. There is no one definition of member engagement.

Help Others Matter More: Another Way Associations Can Add Value

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Related posts: Making members look great! Teaching whole life skills to our members. Is the association providing enough value to long-time members? The post Help Others Matter More: Another Way Associations Can Add Value appeared first on Smooth The Path.

Associations Please Help Fix Time-Poverty

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From university presidents to CFOs, to fundraisers, to engineers, to financial planners, to association professionals, none of us have enough time. Being involved in an association usually takes time. But what if our association could give back time to our members?

Who Are the Stephanies in Your Association?

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Think about what would happen to your member’s experience if we could identify all the “Stephanies”, nurture or train more “Stephanies” and put them where they will have the most interaction with other members.

Add Value for Members Even When They Are Not Succeeding

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How can your association help members when they are at their most fragile? Do you have content, resources, networks, consultants, processes or other mechanisms for helping members when they hit those inevitable low spots in their career?

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How to Exponentially Improve Member Engagement at Any Association

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Wouldn’t it be great if members felt this way every day of the week? At some associations, members do feel this way, and your members can feel like this too. The good news is size is not holding associations back. Related: Member Engagement Research.

Better Member Retention From Frictionless Experiences Designed for Your Association

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In the age of infinite choice, organizations can not afford to make the purchase experience difficult. All of these changes, which would be unheard of just a decade ago, seek to make the consumer experience easier. Immediate access to behind-the-pay-wall member benefits upon joining.

Why Long-Time Members Are Reluctant to Leave Your Association

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New members are our most at-risk segment of members but, they are not the only at-risk members we have. We see retention rates decline for long-time members as well. Long-time members have experienced years of happy membership.

Trade Associations Do Not Really Have Organizational Membership

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On paper, your association has an organizational-type membership structure. But, that is not the way your members think about the membership. Your key contact member understands that some of their colleagues at their organization can be members.

Every Professional Feels Very Alone Sometimes

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Find out what aspect of your member’s professional lives has them feeling most alone. Related: Members want to be seen. Your members feel very alone. Most professionals in most organizations feel alone some of the time. They are right; they are alone.

The Question Our Newest Members are Asking

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Related: Our members are not crazy. Why new members actually join. The most frustrating thing members do. The post The Question Our Newest Members are Asking appeared first on Smooth The Path.

When We Create a Vacuum of Information Our Members Make Up Stories

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For example, when a member calls the association’s headquarters, leaves a message, and does not get a call back within 24 hours that member may start thinking: “My message got lost”, or. Members are busy making up stories when they do not know the answer.

Is Your Association Breaking This Key Rule While Trying to Engage Younger Members?

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I’ve come across many organizations who try endlessly to engage younger members, but to no avail. From my experience, it’s because they’re breaking one key rule without knowing it. Once associations start following that rule, they are able to engage younger members with ease.

Association Email is Dying

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Email is ridiculously important to the health of our association because at most associations email is by far the most used channel to communicate with our members. Can you imagine if your members waited eagerly every Friday for your weekly email to arrive?

Big is Good, but Small is Better for Associations

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Huge associations have found that when you serve everyone, you end up helping no one. Recognizing the benefits they provided were too generic, these large associations divided their organization into smaller groups with each group serving a particular member type.

Associations and Lousy Marketing

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Just because we manage non-profit associations does not make us immune to lousy marketing. Even association marketing can force attention, game participation, and fake attraction. When members respond to the association, do they sometimes regret it later?

Long-Time Members Really Dislike This

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Long-time members consider their long-time-ness to be a badge of honor too. They love it when associations keep an accurate record of their original join date and usually love it when others can see that date in their profile. Members want us to know them.