It’s one thing to have your members be involved in your association and quite another to have them take on a real sense of ownership. If you ask any association executive, one of the hardest facets of the job is figuring out a way to facilitate a high level of engagement on a regular basis with their members.
To truly reach your audience in this way, you need to have to a receptive member who wants more out of your association because of personal motivations. But how can you accomplish that? Take a look at our three step method below to see how you can motivate your members into taking more ownership.
1. Discover Your Members Interest
Before you can reel your members into more involvement, you need to understand their basic motivations. The big question here is: What are their passion points as a member? Are they interested in advocacy, education, or administration? Or perhaps they are looking to expand their industry knowledge? Either way, we recommend reaching out to them directly with a survey.
You can create this survey by using your AMS (where it would be automated) or use a survey software like Google Forms (where you would need to include some additional intake information). The goal is to ask questions that really engage your member personas and figure out the areas with the most interest.
2. See Who Wants to Take Charge
Once you figure out what your members want, you can start segmenting your emails to your members for each area of interest. Once again, you can segment automatically with your AMS or you can manually separate your members into groups from your survey information. Ultimately, you’re trying to see who would be the best fit to lead a potential mini-committee.
When it comes to writing your segmented email, make sure you talk about basic responsibilities that would be involved, time commitment and general goals of the committee. This will allow you to gauge and separate those members that want to be generally more involved and those that want to help run these mini-committees.
3. Provide Support Where You Can
While you don’t want to create even more work for yourself, it’s important for you to openly commit yourself as a point of contact so your members can feel supported by these new endeavors. Without this reinforcement, you might actually turn off a lot of members from your association as they will feel left out to dry.
If you are worried about this bleeding into your other duties, don’t be afraid to reach out to more dedicated members and see if they would be interested in mentoring some of your newer members. Sometimes it takes a village and it’s in your advantage to use the skill sets from your more experienced members.
Finding and fostering these new leaders will help you create longer retention across the board and help foster a long lasting interest in your association. In addition, getting more members involved will help with burnout from your staff. While this won’t happen overnight, ultimately creating more devoted members to your association will be a win-win for all involved!
It’s known that most association professionals are always struggling with keeping retention rates high in their association. If you are concerned about keeping your members for the long term, take a look at our Membership Retention Tactics that WORK to see what you can do to make it a little less stressful!