When you think of membership renewal strategies, you might think about the few months leading up to a member’s renewal date. But your members’ entire experience with your organization — not just the last 90 days — informs their decision to renew. From the moment they click the “join” button, your members are deciding if they’ll stick around, or if they’ll go.

Here are four strategies to start using today to make your members feel as if they can’t afford to leave:

Map the member journey:

Creating member journey maps is an effective way to see your members’ experience from their point of view. Journey maps are outlines of each step of a member experience that tell the full story of being a member — from their first interaction and subsequent engagement to a lifelong relationship.

Welcome members the right way:

Thank new members for joining your organization, and let them know what to expect. These simple acts can go a long way to making them feel appreciated and welcome right off the bat:

  • Acknowledge their new membership with a “thank you” confirmation page and auto-email once they sign up online.
  • Take it a step further by sending a personal email or hand-written welcome note, or even send a welcome gift or packet.
  • Let them know how your organization works, what to expect next and where to go for information.

Drive ongoing engagement:

Once your new members are on board, keep them actively engaged with your association to nurture a longer-lasting relationship. A few ideas:

  • Present your members with content that is specific to their needs and interests.
  • Offer recommendations, such as job postings based on each member’s certifications or CE course completion.
  • Meet members where they are. For example, use a social mobile app and automated push notifications to let members know important information and reminders, such as when event registrations open.

Convey your association’s value:

Make your members feel connected with your organization and show them the value of their membership through continued communication. Here are a few ways to deliver the most effective content in the most effective way:

  • Determine what information you need to communicate with your members, and what content will give your members the tools they need to do their jobs better.
  • Develop personas, or fictional, generalized characters that represent various needs, goals and challenges among your members. Have a persona in mind as you develop content and communications for the group each specific persona represents.
  • Revisit your journey maps, and consider creating a member journey map for each of your personas. Then, develop content and communications that speak to each persona throughout the member journey.

Every day presents another opportunity in your members’ experience with your organization to win them over. Consider membership renewal as a year-long strategy, and see just how effective this approach can be for increasing membership retention.

Learn more about how nurture relationships and keep members around for the long haul: Download The Ultimate Guide to Membership Renewal.

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