This week of Wednesday Roundup is going to be a little different than normal. Instead of starting a new topic, we’re going to do a recap on all of our past Wednesday Roundups. We’ll highlight the most compelling takeaways from each topic and share strategies to improve your association.
If you’re not familiar…
Every Wednesday a blog post is dedicated to a summary of the most compelling articles surrounding our selected topic. We share articles and videos from association management companies, membership organizations, business experts, design gurus, and more. If you haven’t been following along, check out the topics we’ve explored this summer.
- June: Growing Your Membership
- July: Association Revenue Management
- August: How to Improve Your Website
Growing Your Membership Review
Let’s jump right in! Growing your membership requires a lot of effort. Check out our top tips to increasing membership and ways to best serve your members.
Though you should always be reassessing the benefits you offer to members that incentivize them to renew year after year, building a recruitment strategy that generates a constant influx of new members is essential.
Ideally, all of your members would renew year and year. But, as member engagement ebbs and flows for a variety of reasons, it’s important to establish a strategy that simultaneously fills your pipeline. As members drop off, fill their places with new fresh faces. Build a strong cycle of member signups to balance out membership expirations.
Even if you’ve been an association manager for many years [and think you know what members want], regularly reviewing member needs is crucial to provide relevant resources.
Before you begin a new membership recruitment cycle, review the current member benefits. Is what your offering still relevant? Or has the industry changed, meaning professionals needs have changed as well? Research market trends and see how you measure up. Better member benefits = more incentive to sign up.
Resources First, Ask Second
It’s pretty common to offer free content on your website. Users expect this and if you’re not already doing it, it’s time to start. To put your self one step ahead of the game, ask visitors for their name and email so you can send them additional resources or contact them when the timing is right.
Increasing Revenue Growth
Whether it’s a simple annual fee of 100 bucks or a complex calculation based on company revenue, membership fees are the building blocks of your bottom line. Assuming you have faithful members, that influx of money is a constant. As your membership grows, managing payments can be tricky.
As your association grows, it’s essential you have an accurate and automatic workflow to process membership dues. This is where an AMS comes in. Using automated tools like dues notifications and online payments are a serious game changer. Not only are you saving time as an admin but reporting and finance tools ensure no money or member is falling through the cracks.
Many association management systems offer accounting integrations like QuickBooks. By connecting the two platforms, you can safely and confidently know that both systems are communicating and know you’re not missing anything.
While association finances may not be the most glamorous part of your job, it is an essential part of your job. Ease your efforts by connecting to an accounting software. AMO integrates with Quickbooks so you can see exactly where revenue is coming from. Use this information when building strategy. Do you see most of your revenue from events? Capitalize on this knowledge by increasing event advertising and setting a goal for xx amount of attendees.
A strong non-dues revenue strategy is vital to an association’s revenue growth. As we mentioned above, membership dues are the buliding blocks of your main association revenue but events, donations, ads, and sponsorships are great ways to supplement your earnings and give you some wiggle room.
How to Improve Your Website
Many of us don’t have time (or money) to do a complete website overhaul. However, most sites could probably do with a small facelift.
Before you change too many things, make a list of priorities. Develop a strategy for each item. Think through the process like this:
What is my end goal? What metric(s) will I measure? How long will I test this change? What tools will I use to analyze the change?
Remember, without metrics, we cannot truly measure the success (or failure) of our changes. Start with one small item and work your way up.
If a prospective member is visiting your site for the first time, make sure important resources like member benefits and the membership application are visible. Your homepage is the priciest screen real estate, and for good reason. If a prospect cannot find what they’re looking for as soon as they land on the page, there’s a higher chance they’ll bounce.
Not only should you review your website content, but also take a look at the layout and feel. Does it flow? Do the colors invite or deter users? Take a walk through your website from an outsiders perspective and give honest feedback. Maybe that means adding a CTA to direct the user or breaking up a paragraph with an image. Make small tweaks and measure the change.
Don’t forget to check back next week for a new topic in Wednesday Roundup!