I've been speaking with several associations during the past two months on recruitment, testing strategies and developing effective programs to drive membership growth. As part of my research, I just reread the results of a program I ran a year ago and thought it would be important to remind everyone that it's important to keep several things in mind as a recruitment effort is designed and implemented:
When developing your recruitment strategy for the coming year:
- Create a structured learning environment that tests multiple target audiences and offers.
- Be sure that what is learned is actionable information for future campaigns.
- Recognize that each new member represents multiple years of dues and non-dues revenue.
- Refine recruitment programs to identify the most and the least productive combinations of offers, target segments, and creative appeal.
- Finally, keep in mind that an initial investment today, even if it incurs a loss in present day dollars, if done correctly can acquire essential knowledge to refine future acquisitions and set the stage for long-term organizational growth.
Following these simple rules will help you not only get the most out of your current campaign, but many campaigns to come.
Erik Schonher is Vice President for Marketing General Incorporated, the nation's largest marketing organization specializing in membership growth, and can be reached at (703) 706-0358 or Erik@MarketingGeneral.com .