Your members’ needs and expectations are always changing. Are you doing all you can to give them a stellar experience? What better way to find out than to walk a (virtual) mile in their shoes?
Creating member journey maps is an effective way to see your members’ experience from their point of view. Journey maps are simply outlines of each step of a member experience that tells the full story of being a member and illustrates the member experience—from their first interaction and subsequent engagement to (you hope) a lifelong relationship.
Members take different pathways throughout their membership lifecycle, and it’s important to understand each one. Here are three areas to consider when creating member journey maps.
Think about your members’ first interactions with your organization.
The first few months of membership with your organization will make a lasting impression on your members. Map out the sign-up process, and ask yourself what you can do to make it better. How easy is it to find the sign-up form on your website? How easy is the sign-up process? Can you remove a few steps? Reduce the amount of information you collect in your sign-up form to make it easier and quicker to complete.
Next, map out the onboarding process, and consider if it’s clear and simple for each member. Does it address their reason for joining? For example, does it present them with information and next steps that address their needs? Are you letting them know what communications they can expect to receive from you? Asking them to add you to their “safe sender” list? Sending them a “welcome” gift?
Finally, map out their first 90 days of membership—a critical period for making a good first impression with a new member. What benefits do they receive? Are you communicating those benefits to them clearly? Are you presenting them with personalized information and offering them products that correspond to their reason for joining? Look at the first 90 days from their perspective, and think about how you might provide even more value for each member.
Map out ALL your various member experiences.
Members have different reasons for joining your organization, so it’s important to create maps for each of the member experiences after their initial joining period. For example, you might have a map for the online training experience, one for certification processes, and one for the career center/job search experience. And, don’t forget about the membership renewal process. You also might break down the maps by other factors, such as member level and age group.
Leverage your members.
Once you’ve mapped out your various member journeys and begun to identify areas for improvement, consider getting your members involved. Select a few members who correspond with each member journey map, and ask them about their experience so far. Present them with the ideas you have for improvements, and get their feedback.
Want to learn more about how to evaluate and improve your members’ experience? Read the Community Brands Digital Member Study, and uncover more about the shifting expectations and engagement preferences of members.