Ah yes, membership dues. So simple in theory, so complicated in execution.
Need some help getting your members to actually PAY? Here are a few tips:
1. Start early
You know just as well as we do that it often takes a few emails to get people to complete a certain action - and that includes paying for membership dues. That said, the earlier you can start reminding people to pay their dues, the better.
How early should you start? Well, three months prior to expiration is a pretty good timeframe. In fact, according to Marketing General Incorporated’s 2016 Membership Marketing Benchmarking Report, three months prior to expiration is the most popular time to begin membership renewal efforts - more than 40 percent of associations start then!
2. Personalize your reminders
The chances of someone reading your email are MUCH better if the email is addressed to them. Personalized intros help eliminate the notion of spam.
That said, we understand you have hundreds upon hundreds (if not thousands upon thousands) of members to email. So how do you personalize all of those messages (without losing your mind)? Simple - an AMS! An AMS, which stands for association management system, is a technology solution designed to help you manage your membership. And since it’s tied to your organization’s database, you can easily personalize all of your emails - without having to do anything! (More about AMS solutions here.)
3. Allow your members to pay online
This day in age, convenience is K-E-Y. Period. The easier it is for people to pay their membership dues, the more likely they are to do so. And what’s the easiest way for people to pay? Online!
Tip: When sending out your reminder emails, be sure to include a link directing your members exactly where to pay. If you take them to the bank, they’re more likely to make a deposit - know what we mean?
4. Be lenient
Your members are busy, busy, busy, and sometimes, the thought of renewing their membership simply slips their mind. But don’t punish them for that. In fact, it’s better for everyone (both you and your members) if you offer a grace period of some sort. Members are more likely to renew in the grace period than they are after they’ve lapsed completely. (Note: Two to three months is the standard here.)
Want more tips for collecting membership dues and getting your renewal rates UP? Check out our free guide, Best Practices for Membership Renewals, below!