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New Mexico Restaurant Association - Benefits Management

How a statewide association proves membership value and retains key sponsors with a white-glove experience

The New Mexico Restaurant Association represents the state’s entire restaurant industry. They educate and support restaurateurs, provide discounts on services through various partnerships, and are actively involved in advocating for restaurants at the state and national levels.

In order to support all of this activity, NMRA relies on the contributions from five major sponsors each year. The association strives to provide a white glove experience to these important investors - but, they were struggling to do so without accurate visibility into what additional benefits these sponsors each had, and if/when they’d been used.

Enter: the Benefits Management tool in their Atlas membership management software. While Benefits Management was built to assist associations and chambers of commerce with managing varying benefits packages across their membership, that’s certainly not the feature’s only use.

In fact, the NMRA saw a way it could help solve their problem with giving their sponsors the attention they deserve.

“The sponsors are the ones who really need proof of what the organization is doing for them - that makes a big difference on whether they renew,” says Cindy Ploen, Director of Finance and Administration. “I can send them their profile report showing them what they have or haven’t used, and they can log in to see this info themselves, too.”

And that white glove experience? Using Benefits Management has also made it easier for association staff to view a sponsor’s remaining perks, and apply them to different benefits and events on their behalf.

It gets better: Ploen and her team have also started to see how using association benefits can ultimately save members’ their entire cost to join (and sometimes even more). 

“We regularly find cases where a person’s membership is actually paying for itself. And we tout this to our members: ‘We can save you the $300 it costs you to join. You are no worse off, but you get better representation for legislature and regulation, you get access to the 100+ years of restaurant industry expertise we have on staff. Really, what more could you ask for?”

The association is looking forward to expanding their use of Benefits Management in the future by giving more visibility to members, getting more targeted with their benefits offerings, and promoting various partnerships and services that aren’t being used by everyone.