One of the metrics I established as a membership manager at a medical association was to determine the likeliness of new members to renew their membership based on their level of engagement. Digging through the data, we found that only 10% of members renewed if they didn’t engage with our association during the first two years after joining.
10%?! I knew then that it was my top priority to get members engaged as soon as they joined.
In the book, The Art of Membership: How to Attract, Retain, and Cement Member Loyalty, author Sheri Jacobs, CAE, shared that: “The secret to increasing retention rates for first-year members is simple: create at least one meaningful interaction during the first 90 days of their membership. It is during this timeframe that most decisions are made regarding the perceived value of the membership and the decision to renew.”
Robbie Kellman Baxter expanded on this in her book, The Membership Economy: Find Your Super Users, Master the Forever Transaction, and Build Recurring Revenue. She advocated to award desired member behaviors. One way associations instantly provide value and reward desired behaviors is through a unified online community that promptly presents members a collaborative feed customized to their preferences. They can quickly see new posts from other members, any new posts from their private groups, and any related and relevant job opportunities. Members are rewarded for their behaviors through the community and ranked against their fellow members. Rewarding these behaviors are vital to your association becoming your members’ daily social networking habit.
Here’s an infographic to learn about the essential steps of your members’ onboarding journey.