Though many people think recruitment is the bread and butter of an effective membership program, in actuality, recruitment and retention combined make for the most effective program. All associations want to achieve higher member retention rates. At AMC, many of our clients use retention programs that integrate a wide range of techniques in order to remind members that continuing their membership makes good sense. From letters sent by Board leaders, to special offers on products, to targeted email campaigns highlighting the association’s benefits, these programs do generate success.
In addition to these programs, nine of AMC’s clients utilize our 922 team—a group of highly educated, part-time employees who work from 9 am–2 pm—to make retention phone calls on their behalf to expiring members. The success has been tremendous for each and every one of them.
For example, our client, the National Association for Healthcare Quality (NAHQ), has worked with 922 for years to deploy the retention call program to help expiring members see the benefit of continuing their membership with the association. This technique has led to excellent retention rates.
In addition to year-round retention efforts, AMC’s 922 team monthly pulls the most up-to-date list of members whose membership is about to expire. Short personal calls are made either speaking directly with the member or leaving a friendly reminder message that it is time to renew. During the call, 922 can immediately process renewal payments, make notes in ‘contact tracking’ in the database and update the member’s profile information.
In 2014, the NAHQ retention call program retained more than 600 members, up by more than 120 from the prior year, resulting in more than $96,000 in retained revenue with the 922 call playing an integral part. According to Executive Director Stephanie Mercado, “Getting back a lapsed member is expensive and time consuming. The 922 retention program offers us a proactive approach to retention so that we can focus our efforts on acquiring net-new members.” Of the clients who use the program, they in total retained more than 4,000 members and more than $830,000 in revenue in 2014.