These past few months have been an incredible time for associations to show their value to their members and prospects. They have helped their members secure PPP loans, lobby that their members are essential businesses, and develop plans for reopening. The communications teams have been working overtime to produce more webinars, podcasts, social media posts, and industry updates.
As your members begin to reopen, now is the time to evaluate your retention and recruitment plans. Unfortunately, some of your members will not survive the fallout from this pandemic, but don’t let that paralyze you from recruiting new members. Just in the past month we have recruited two maximum level dues members for our association partners. Yes, companies are on spending freezes, however, if your association has something of extreme value, there is a market for it. Do not underestimate the worth of your expertise and content you have produced over the last several months.
With event revenue taking a hit to your bottom line for 2020, membership recruitment and retention is going to extremely important for the remainder of this year. Here are some tips you can use:
1. If membership renewals are due now, send them out. Reinforce the value of what your association has done over the past several months and ask for the continued support of their association. We have seen a majority of members renewing at their normal rates.
2. Delay or discount dues only if a member asks for it and needs it. Don’t put your association in a one down position by discounting something you didn’t have to.
3. If you have been providing content for free to non-members, start to cut back. It was a good will service provided by your association; however, your valuable content should be for members only.
4. Reach out to the prospects that have been engaging with your association the past several months. Perhaps they never saw much value in your association in the past but now they do.
5. Start a plan now on how you will combat lower renewal rates for 2021. You will most likely not be able to trim your budget by staff reductions to offset these potential losses. We recommend you evaluate what resources you can bring in to increase membership recruitment. Go out and try to replace the members you lost rather than making cuts.
If your association needs any advice or help with membership retention and recruitment, give us a call or fill out the form below and we’ll be in touch!