To keep that ROI front and centre, here are some things you can do to move beyond a list of features and talk about the outcomes and benefits your members receive:
Ÿ Avoid catch phrases. Your members and prospects are looking for real value, and they’ll quickly detect (and reject) standard jargon they might hear from any other organization. For example, unless you can show that you really offer a vastly better setting for networking, there’s no point talking about a benefit people can receive in many different places, in person and online.
Ÿ Talk about the future, not the past. Your association may have been an industry leader for the last 100 years, but that won’t likely matter to someone who’s in her first 100 weeks in your industry. New members will care much more about where you’re going than where you’ve been.
Ÿ Let your champions tell your story. Your mission statement is important as a quick definition of what your association is about. But newer generations of members will look for feedback from other members, making testimonials an increasingly powerful tool.
Ÿ Create the right marketing materials. To get to the core of your value proposition, think about how your association makes a difference in members’ lives, or what they would miss if the organization didn’t exist. Find out why new members are joining and build a marketing campaign that showcases that value for potential recruits.
Ÿ Focus on member value. Can you clearly articulate what your members need now? What they’ll likely be looking for in the next one, three, or five years? What are you doing to anticipate and deliver on those expectations?
There’s a simple way to answer these tough questions: Ask your members. Creating a simple survey can bring you the statistics and the feedback you need to make the right assessment and develop the right member recruitment and retention materials.