Is your association not seeing the engagement you want from your membership base? Think that they just aren’t interested, or that they just don’t have time for your association? Wrong! They became a member for a reason and they want to engage with your association even though they have a busy life of their own. Associations must engage with their members all year round and in the right ways. We’re here to give you 5 habits that engaging associations practice 365 days a year.

1. Timely reach out.
Ok, that sounds like a no brainer, but when someone signs up for your association, make sure you reach out right away. This is your association’s first impression with a new member and you need to make it count. An automated welcome series can catch a new member up on what’s been going on in the association and can aid in that ‘new guy’ feeling.
Already have a great way to welcome new members? What about established members who haven’t taken any action in quite some time? Establish a trigger campaign to renew their love for your association and the work it does through a ‘we miss you’ email(s) for members who haven’t opened an email in 60 days or whatever time period you feel is appropriate. For this, you can easily steal ideas from your membership renewal series.

2. Interesting Content.
Associations that have the greatest engagement from their members work hard to create content that those members are interested in and want to take action on. These associations are also good at being concise and to the point when delivering content. Remember, people are busy and have a lot of content thrown at them from various different directions. Keep your message short and easy to digest, but make sure you deliver the whole story and don’t leave any holes. Also, only email when your association has something to say. If they get too much fluff, they’ll assume all of it is.

3. Multi-Channel Delivery.
Maybe you’re reaching out often enough and you have great content, but are you reaching them in the ‘right way?’ There are so many options out there for engagement. You have to find a way to work in this multi-channel world. Let the availability of different channels work for you, not against you. Having a comprehensive plan for multi-channel integration will ensure that your membership base is going to see that great content you are sending them and are more likely to act on the all-important action items.

4. Spice it up.
Use pictures from your annual conference or regional meetings, have your executive board make a quick video (it can be related to your mission or just something quick and fun for the holidays or other important events), have staff members write a weekly blog or host a webinar. Get creative, or even ask your members to get creative via a quick social media poll or email survey.

5. Share the success stories.
Your members are there for a joint purpose. Remind them that their involvement is making a difference with real stories about what the association is accomplishing.

Follow these good habits to better engage your members all year round. To learn more, tune in to ‘365 Days of Member Engagement’ on December 3rd at noon (CDT) with Charity Dynamics and Abila and read our other blog made especially for associations, 365 Member Engagement. During the webinar, don’t forget to follow our live tweeting at #NYKnowHow.