Growth Strategies for Membership Organisations: Part 2

In part 2 of the top growth strategies for membership organisations I will focus on the marketing and communication aspect that associations and Not-For-Profit organisations can easily implement into day to day activities.

Members are the prime sources of income for any association and having the ability to effectively speak and interact with them is crucial. I will highlight key marketing steps that you as staff members can utilise within your own association or Not-For-Profit.

Create a Marketing Plan

The first step is to create a marketing plan as every organisation must have a clear idea of how to present their services to their clients. The information and key facts that should be considered are sponsors, demographic, geographic, psychographic characteristics, product or service and competition (and yes, you always have competition).

Strategic difference and your own strategies to engage and retain existing members are also very important decisions to be made. These may be part of your overall strategic plan or as a stand-alone document. The winning combination is to make sure your marketing actions are planned, relevant, affordable, achievable, and most importantly, measurable.

Educate Your Members

An important part of your day-to-day activities is to make sure you are educating your members. Events, seminars, conferences, workshops, resources and online training programs can provide you with a valuable income stream whilst building capability within your members to arm them for greater success.

One thing to remember is to offer registration discounts to members, hold members-only events and also provide discounted purchasable resources to members, this will further build value in your membership plans.

Support Special Interest Groups

Special Interest Groups (SIGs) are a great way to educate and keep your members informed, allowing them to focus their efforts on areas of most interest to the individual. Not only do SIGs provide valuable business information intelligence, they allow you to sharpen your focus when communicating with members and allow you to better understand what is of most importance to specific members.

Promote to Future Members

Being proactive in your approach in identifying your future members is a beneficial idea for your membership organisation. Ways you can promote to future members is by advertising your organisation to university students and trade apprentices, as well as getting to know campus management and lecturers.

Make sure to offer special discounted rates to the campus team and students to give them an incentive to join your association. Offering work experience programs and a Jobs Portal for student members can be used to build value for them.

Read part 3 on how to perform Effective Lobbying and really sell your services


growth stratergies for associations