A Member Research Strategy to Consider

Smooth The Path

Qualitative is not statistically significant, and unless your membership is very small, we cannot capture every member’s voice. Many quantitative surveys can be statistically significant, and they are usually open to every member. So it seems like quantitative surveys should be the method of choice because we want feedback from many members but, both methods have tradeoffs. The New Member Engagement Study is a mixed method study.

How Often are We Out of Sync with Members?

Smooth The Path

Likely members think the value of their membership is more than or less than we think they think it is. Likely members have better or worse experiences with the association than we guess they do. Likely members like the conference more or less than we assume they do. The problem with being disconnected with members is we may focus on the wrong strategies, develop the wrong new products or services or send out marketing messages that just don’t hit the mark.

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Our Members are Self-Centered

Smooth The Path

Our members are self-centered. Our members have… no time. Only organizations that solve our member’s problems, speak their language, and understand them will get their time and attention. Can you stand in your member’s shoes and do this? Related: Member Engagement Research. Better member retention from frictionless experiences designed for your association. Our point of view is not our member’s point of view.

How to Leverage Your Association’s Super-Members

Smooth The Path

The trouble with association boards is they tend to be populated with super-members. Super-members are members who are so engaged, so seasoned, so advanced in the profession or industry they are not like most members. If your board members fit this profile, they are not good candidates for focus groups to determine the member experience. They no longer think or behave like most members, certainly not new members.

5 Ways Great Associations Become Great

Smooth The Path

What makes an association great in the eyes of members? Members say, Transactions work like I expect them to. I am proud to be a member. I aspire to meet the other members of this association. Or the staff, board, and members go above and beyond. The new member engagement rule of three. Association Value Member Insights association benefits association solutions association strategy belonging curated networking member experience membership value

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One Thing We can do to Prepare for Change

Smooth The Path

Related: Members need association help when they face change or start something new. Did you know that member surveys can be risky? Association Strategy Member Research change innovation member insights member problems risk strategy technologyThe award-winning process for association innovation. The post One Thing We can do to Prepare for Change appeared first on Smooth The Path.

What Association CEO’s Need to Do About Membership

Smooth The Path

CEOs have a tremendous impact on each member’s perceptions of the association, member culture, and membership metrics. Membership departments tend to focus on members or they focus on the mechanics of membership. The CEO markets a particular job description with a specific set of skills then recruits a Director of Membership who becomes the member expert, and an advocate for members, and a welcoming committee for members.

When Members Believe the Association is Their Cause

Smooth The Path

From the outside, this association is very much like many others; there are members, chapters, special interest groups, and conferences. The leadership structure is super interesting because the association is global, large with nearly 17,000 members, and vibrant because they are at the forefront of thinking about how their profession is going to change in the future. When the association needed a new website a member lead the refresh.

Differentiating Between Member Feedback and Member Criticism

Smooth The Path

Each time you offer members something new you have a choice. You can listen to the feedback from those members who are all in. Member feedback helps the new change or product reach its fullest potential. What is your association’s take on member feedback? The post Differentiating Between Member Feedback and Member Criticism appeared first on Smooth The Path. They are trying their hardest to give you thoughtful, useful feedback.

Learn About Members’ Why

Smooth The Path

This is great advice but it is awfully hard to do when we don’t know our members’ why. For every action (or inaction) members (and non-members) take there is a why. As established organizations, knowing our member’s why helps us develop and communicate our why. Just like – what doesn’t make for a very compelling story but, why does – what doesn’t make for very actionable member insights but why does.

Is it Day 1 or Day 2 for Associations?

Smooth The Path

True customer (member) obsession and high-velocity decision making are the most critical but also the most difficult for associations. Think about your members. Think about your best members. Not board members but regular members who are highly engaged. We can change the organization’s strategy. We can develop offerings members love. We can attract high-quality members with our improved marketing. Have you heard about Day 1 and Day 2?

Please Ask Members

Smooth The Path

As a member researcher I see some validity to this statement. Research, particularly qualitative research is very good at naming member problems but members themselves are often hard pressed to articulate the right solution. The problem with this quote is too often it is used as proof of why member research, of why asking, is the wrong tactic to use for our associations. We have got to ask our members. We may see members pulling back and not purchasing.

Data and Association Decision-Making

Smooth The Path

We feel better when we can say 75% of our members do this. When making a strategic decision on the basis of qualitative data (a member survey, our own data or third party data) ask these questions: Who responded and are these the members we most need insight from? Association Strategy Member Research accurate actionable complete data member data member insight qualitative member research quantitative member research

Overcoming Association Change Fatigue

Smooth The Path

If you are walking into an association where one or a combination of any of these things have happened, you may see that everyone is fatigued; staff, board and maybe even members. One great way to build trust is learn about members and help everyone else to learn about members in a new way. By doing this we learn what is most important to members now. What do you do if you are coming to an association that has a recent messy history?

What We Can Do to Get Members to Rave About the Association

Smooth The Path

For associations who want raving fans not just satisfied members think about all the things your very favorite go-to’s do. What else can we do to get members to rave about our association? Related posts: The members we should focus on. We should value the members who value the association the most. Member culture: setting the tone for better learning, engagement and connection. Think of the things in your life that you buy without questioning it.

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There are Important Things We May Not Know About the Association

Smooth The Path

There are some things about the association we may not know unless we ask members. our long-time members are disengaging. we use different words than our members use. we are solving a problem members have already solved. We may not know about the big things and the little things, especially the little things, that take nips out of our member’s experience. Members don’t usually offer up that kind of information.

Case Study: In-depth Member Interviews Feed Association’s Strategic Plan

Smooth The Path

What else should the association do to support members during these extremely challenging times? In preparation for other strategic planning processes the association conducted quantitative member surveys but found the results were not all that actionable because there continued to be so many unanswered questions. Based on this input we outlined two goals for the research project: Understand member’s current challenges. Listening to members.

Developing My Dream Association

Smooth The Path

If I were to build an association, I would pull the most significant insights from all of the research I have conducted. One of the core staff values would be to be intensely member-focused. We would talk with members often, conduct listening tours, and interview them. We would use all the member insights we gain to develop our member communications, set our strategy, and create an innovation plan. Related: The new member engagement rule of three.

3 Ways to Get Members to Read Your Marketing Communications

SocialFish

Same with your members they think much of what you send to them does not apply to them. Here’s why your members may not be responding to your marketing communications: Use their words. When I’m working with clients I’m often surprised by the difference between what the client calls things and what their members call things. Not using your member’s words sets you apart making trust that much harder. But member marketing is much harder now.

The Marketing of Marketing is not Telling Us The Whole Story About Member Research

SocialFish

For example, we see more content on tactics than we do strategy. Technology promises to give us unprecedented access to our members’ hearts and minds but does it really deliver? When you first step into a marketing role at an organization with few member insights, start with the data. Perhaps you have the tools to segment your audience to figure out who the organization’s biggest champion is, or the biggest user, or most profitable member group.

Announcing an Entirely New Methodology for Member Research

Smooth The Path

The associations with high member engagement know their members well. In fact, you might work at one of these member engagement unicorns. Do staff regularly conduct member research? Are listening tours, welcome calls, or member interviews on your list of to-dos? When testing new benefits, do you ask for member feedback? But member insights are hard to come by. You may have noticed that fewer members are answering your surveys.

Turning Our Members’ Problems into Opportunities

Smooth The Path

Members want us to solve problems that they can’t solve for themselves – Greg Melia , Director of Membership for ASAE at MASAE’s 2015 mid-year conference. We solve the problems that nag our members, problems that no one else cared to solve or could solve. The trouble is, many associations are losing members because they are no longer solving problems that members can’t solve for themselves. The trick is to start thinking of members first.

7 Tips to Improve Your Marketing Reporting and Prove Your Worth

Higher Logic

You might find that you gain a quarter of your membership in May and September but lose members in December. This data is already available to you, so you might as well take advantage of the opportunity to get a deeper look into your community’s health and find actionable insights to drive decision-making. This data shows you what kind of content your members like and can help you decide what content strategy to pursue. How long are your members staying on board?

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Association Brain Food Weekly: 10.13.17

Reid All About it

The weekly list of free professional development events for the association community… I’m excited and honored to be heading to Association Charrette today with 19 other association geeks for a weekend full of “insightful conversation about emerging trends and disruptions” in the association industry. One of the most fascinating technological developments is the increasing use of artificial intelligence (AI) to deliver a more meaningful and valuable customer and member experience.

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What’s the Difference Between Automation Rules and Marketing Automation, Anyway?

Higher Logic

Improving member communications. Two tools: One (automation rules) that helps you scale actions within your online community, and one (marketing automation) that helps you scale your member outreach. Automation rules are a tool within a Higher Logic online community allowing you to automate tasks in your community at scale, like sending a personal email to everyone who has completed a certain task, adding new members to a community, or generating a report. Automation rules.

Growth Hacking Your Community with Vanessa DiMauro

Higher Logic

It should attract new members, offer smooth onboarding and persistent attention, and ultimately embrace marketing tactics like great content, campaigns and social media outreach. Every community needs to align with organizational goals and set up a strategy for scale and efficiency. NSBE was founded in 1975 and has around 30,000 members. Growth matters: five member engagement hacks. Members will come to the community for good content, but stay for each other.

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Association Brain Food Weekly: 3.22.19

Reid All About it

Your new member onboarding shouldn’t just be show and tell , says Billhighway. They suggest working with your chapters on an onboarding plan that helps you learn about new members’ needs, introduce them to the chapter and association, and guide them onto the most relevant membership path. Tue 3/26 at 8:30 a.m.* – Improving Member Engagement (Coffee Talk – Alexandria VA). Your focus is on your members and it can be challenging to compete for their time.

Association Brain Food Weekly: 6.6.16

Reid All About it

Strategy and governance. Learn how to identify strategies and realistic planning tactics to create the revolution needed to sustain your association. Join AENC affiliate members to discuss: How are you marketing your company and/or yourself? – Best Practices: Using Digital Metrics to Gain Member Insight.

Association Brain Food Weekly: 6.13.16

Reid All About it

Hear how the National Association of Tax Professionals used Google Universal Analytics to uncover insights they previously only made assumptions about, and how the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association streamlined their business processes with Google Tag Manager. To be successful, you need a solid marketing strategy to recruit the right sponsors and grow your attendance. – Measuring: Using Digital Metrics to Gain Member Insight.

How Are Associations Using Twitter?

SocialFish

While all of these things are important for our members to know perhaps pushing all of the time is not so engaging. Instead of just pushing messages through Twitter here are some other ways to use this social media channel that may help you serve your members. Build relationships with members, vendors and industry influencers. Use your feed to highlight member’s awards, member milestones and great work done by members.

Daily Buzz: Modernize Your Conference With an Event App

Associations Now

Also: Are mid-career members mentees, mentors, or both? Associations have members at every career level, but mid-careerists are often left out of the conversation when it comes to mentorship. Maddie Grant, a mid-career professional herself, writes on Association Success that associations need to better acknowledge and leverage mid-career membersinsights. Add LinkedIn to your social strategy. Give your annual meeting a tech refresh with an event app.

The Marketing of Marketing is not Telling Us The Whole Story About Member Research

SocialFish

For example, we see more content on tactics than we do strategy. Technology promises to give us unprecedented access to our members’ hearts and minds but does it really deliver? When you first step into a marketing role at an organization with few member insights, start with the data. Perhaps you have the tools to segment your audience to figure out who the organization’s biggest champion is, or the biggest user, or most profitable member group.

Association Brain Food Weekly: 9.13.19

Reid All About it

What a member (or anyone) says they need isn’t always what they really need. At Association Success , Chris Beaman explains why you have to dig deeper and keep asking Why to fully understand how to meet member needs. Digital Strategies to Engage Members (Coffee Talks with Results Direct – Alexandria VA). Presenters: Chris Bonney, VP of Strategy, Gulo. Hear about the insights and campaign experience that have led to hundreds of viral crowdfunding campaigns.

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