Engaging with your members is tough - for a lot of reasons. But perhaps one of the biggest is the simple fact that members aren’t used to engaging with your association.
Think about your daily routine for a second. Let’s say you wake up, have your morning coffee, head to work, check your email, work on a few projects, run out for lunch, work on a few more projects, head home, exercise for a little bit, have dinner with your family, then soon after, head to bed.
You may switch things up from time to time, but for the most part, that’s your daily schedule.
Now imagine having to throw in something new, like reading a weekly newsletter or checking out a monthly calendar (plus actually having to register for those events). When are you going to squeeze that in? Well you can’t in the morning because that’s when you check your email. And the afternoon’s not really good either because that’s when you finish up projects. And since it’s not really a task you HAVE to complete, why not just...push it?
Too often, that’s what members do.
This is a very round-about way of saying people are creatures of habit. We have routines we like to follow, and when it comes down to choosing between something we’ve always done versus throwing in something extra (“disrupting” our schedule), we often resort to the former. It’s just easier.
Now think about that in terms of member engagement. What if you could become a part of your members’ daily or weekly routine? How much easier would member engagement be then?
A few ideas for doing that:
- Send your newsletter at the same time every week or month - You may need to play around with this a little bit in the beginning to nail down what day/time works best for open rates, but once you have a good idea, stick to that schedule. Members will start to look for it, expect it, and hopefully, get in the habit of reading it.
- Play around with Webinar Wednesdays or Feedback Fridays - This really just depends on what you want your members to do. Do you want them to register for your association’s webinars? Do you want them to participate in an online chat or forum? Whatever it is, try turning it into a routine. Host your webinars on Wednesdays at 2 p.m. (just an example) so people can get in the habit of attending them. (I do this every week with Association Chat.) Or, if you want them to participate in an online forum, try hosting Feedback Fridays. That way, they know every Friday when to login and check out the active conversation.
Now you don’t want to get TOO bogged down with the idea of routine - you want to keep things fresh! But at the same time, the more you’re able to become a part of your members’ daily or weekly routines, the more likely they are to actually take advantage of your association’s offerings.
Want more ideas for engaging your association’s membership? Check out our free member engagement guide below!