Your association’s members shouldn’t be strangers, get to know them better to improve member experience and engagement. 

Here are seven ways to get to know your association’s members better. 


By Christine Bergeron, Marketing Coordinator, Community Brands



Your members are the lifeline of your association. Your members know the important things about your association, your mission, your goals, your reason why, but does your association know these things about your members? Taking the time to get to know your members better benefits your members and your association.

Here are seven tips to get to know your members better:

1. Ask simple questions

This may seem “simple” but asking simple questions can be a great way to start engaging conversation between a member and your association. This type of conversation creates a two-way street between member and association that encourages the sharing of ideas and information.

2. Send Short Surveys

An easy way to start asking simple questions is to send short surveys. Quick pulse surveys to members are a great way to gain relevant information about members. However, make sure that action or follow-up is taken on the answers received from the surveys. Members are more likely to give feedback if they see that it is received and implemented.

3. Conduct member interviews

If surveys aren’t for you, try member interviews instead. Have staff conduct one-on-one interviews with members to learn more about them as people but also as members of your association. Similar to surveys, ensure that the information gathered from the member interviews is put into action.

4. Use the data you already have

You already know some of the basics about your members. For example, each member has already given you information about their preferred communication style from their email preference center options. This information can be easily used to send them more personalized emails.

5. Get staff involved

The best way to get to know your members better is to have your staff communicate with them one-on-one. Designate staff that may already have a personal connection with a member to reach out to them periodically. This may be every couple of weeks or months depending on how engaged the member is. The personal connection may be related interests, fields, or industry depending on the nature of your association.

6. Have staff attend your association’s networking events

While the intention of the event was to provide networking opportunities to your members, your staff and association can also benefit from attending. Virtually or in-person, having your staff attend these events helps put faces to names for staff and members alike.

7. Follow your members on social media.

Connecting with your members on platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter, can help to foster more personal relationships. If you see a member posting about an interesting topic, send them a private message to keep the conversation going.

Getting to know your association’s members is crucial for the long-term success of your association. There are long-term benefits to implementing these tips. Some of the top benefits your association might see are better relationships within your membership community, opportunities for innovation and collaboration and increased member engagement.  To learn how you can engage with your members and get to know them betterread the Small Association’s Guide to Increasing Member Engagement. 


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