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6 Lapsed Member & Member Engagement Ideas that you may not have considered.

Engaging members and lapsed members is the cornerstone of managing successful associations. In this article, we identify 6 membership engagement ideas  that you may want to consider. 

  1. 12-month new member engagement strategy – Research has shown, that if a member engages at least 8-10 times within the association they are more likely to continue to renew their membership. As such, we would encourage Boards and Committees to implement an 8 touch point plan over 12 months for new members. This could include;
    1. Welcome letter/Certificate
    2. Personal Call from Board/Committee
    3. Invitation to sit on sub committee meetings as a guest
    4. Invitation to chair/facilitate or present a webinar
    5. Opportunity to submit an article/white paper etc
    6. Social Media spotlight on the new member
    7. Allow them to invite a colleague or friend complimentary to the next event/training
    8. Have a new members virtual networking event every quarter where new members can introduce themselves to the wider membership group.
  2. Care Call – Nothing says I care about you more as a member, then a personal call from one of the Board. We would recommend setting up quarterly call cycles so that you can reach out to members. This could be a good avenue to check in and conduct some focus groups to gauge how the association is perceived by members.
  3. Non-Member communication strategy – Communicating with non-members and mapping out a “Customer Journey” will help target your non-member communications. We recommend having a minimum 3 touch point strategy and could include;
    • Thank you for attending event/training/webinar and some information on the association with an invitation to take up membership.
    • Follow up email inviting them to follow your association on social media and sign up to the newsletter – send them a sample of the newsletter. Second invitation to take up membership.
    • Last and final communication inviting them to attend something complimentary or as your guest with another invitation to join up as a member.
  4. Multi-year renewals – This is a great way to get your members to commit to membership for longer than 12 months. Multi-year renewals can be 1, 2, 3 and possibly 5 year renewals, offering some significant discount to take up membership for multi-years.
  5. Marketing automation – With the pandemic making digital presence more important for associations today, having a platform that automates your content across these spaces will ensure that your association posting is consistent. As most for purpose organisations are managed by volunteers, automating your marketing becomes one less thing the Board has to worry about, while ensuring a consistent digital presence.
  6. Lapsed Member communication strategy – Having a communication strategy to reach out to lapsed members is crucial for associations. Similar to your non-member communication, there should be at least 3 touch points once they have lapsed. This should at the very minimum include;
    •  Exit survey. Having an exit survey for members is critical in understanding why they are not renewing. This should be short and no more than three questions with the options to provide some commentary. You may discover some underlying problem within your For Purpose Organisation, or they may come up with a new way for the Association to better engage in members that the Board/Committee hadn’t yet considered.
    • Invitation to Renew rather than just send a blanket email to all lapsed members, personalize the email, it can include how long they have been members for, their attendance at the last few events and their valuable contribution to the association.
    • Invitation to reengage with the associations. This could include an invitation to  attend event/webinar/training as your guest. Invitation to submit and article for the newsletter, invitation to present, chair or facilitate a webinar session/event or some other carrot (discounted membership) to encourage renewal.

If you would like to discuss any of these marketing and communications strategies to better support your association, please contact Lynne Greenaway at