Getting the trust of a potential member is one of the biggest challenges when it comes to building your member base. So, what’s the best solution? While you can work on your member acquisition strategy, we also recommend including the tried and true method of word of mouth marketing into your plan. It can be hard for people to trust organizations - they can feel distant, sterile and impersonal. That’s where member testimonials come into play: People want to trust the word of other people. We’ve included the top questions we think you should ask current members to get the best feedback for those considering joining your association.
What is your background?
Before you even begin talking about your product/organization, people are going to want some context. Who is this person? By including a little bit of background about your current member, you are beginning the process of trust between your company and a potential member. Psychologically, people become more comfortable when they understand how they relate to other people personally or professionally. By providing potential members a little bit of framework, you’re establishing a foundation to build the rest of your case on.
How did you find out about our association?
Whereas this question may not be as central for your potential members, this is a great chance to get a little marketing data from your current members. Did they find your association organically, see an advertisement in an industry magazine, or hear about you from a friend? It’s crucial to know where your potential members are coming from so that you can find the best way to market and grab more incoming leads. Remember: You always want to be thinking about your ROI, so make sure that you are collecting any bit of free data to analyze the best marketing practices for your association.
Why did you choose our association?
We recommend specifically using the word choose when displaying this question. Whenever you decide to get involved in a new organization, it comes down to your own personal choice and dedication to be in something bigger than yourself. By highlighting this ideology in this question, you’re asking your potential member to reflect on the types of choices they want to make in their day-to-day life. In addition, this question will help reveal the pain points that current members have faced, allowing potential members to see a connecting thread between the member’s buyer journey and their own.
What has your experience been with our association?
Yes, the essential question: Is this a good idea to join? People want to know the behind the scenes when it comes to getting involved in something extra circular. Try and make sure that your current member provides a concise but compelling before-and-after description so that any prospective members can follow their personal story with your association. Ideally, this answer will consist of an equal mix of logic, passion and credibility that allows others to see tangible proof for why they should contemplate joining.
What statement (up to 10 words) best describes our association?
We like this question because these answers typically provide great headlines/taglines for you to use in future marketing collateral. The specific format of this question allows you to request information in a much more structured way, as your answers can vary from adjectives to a quick blip. Either way, it allows your current member to be a little playful with their response, in turn providing a genuinely fun answer for your potential members to take into consideration.
Would you recommend our association to others in our industry?
By including the word industry in this question, you’re driving your point home that your association can help others just like them. As this is for testimonial purposes, we advise that you do try and select the individuals who would like to explain why they would recommend your group to their industry peers (unless you are trying to collect data for churned engagement/retention techniques).
Ultimately, the blessing of a current member is going to go a long way in motivating potential members to make the plunge into join your association. Remember to thank your current members for their time and try to offer them some benefit (promo codes/swag/etc) in exchange for their time.
Managing your members and potential members while running an organization is no small feat. That's why we have put together the Ultimate Guide to Membership Management to see what it takes to keep your organization up and running!