Top Takeaways from Association Trends Webinar

Top Takeaways from Association Trends Webinar


A number of AMC staff members recently sat in on the Association Trends webinar titled Meeting Membership Recruitment Benchmarks: Strategies to Turbo-Charge Your Recruitment. We asked four of our participants for their biggest takeaway, which are each included here.

The webinar, which featured Rick Whelan, the president of Marketing General, shared some of the company’s top strategies for member recruitment. Here are top takeaways from four AMC attendees.

Peggy Doherty
Membership Manager, Awards and Personalization Association

Top Takeaway: Value of membership shifts depending on where you are in your career.

Perhaps member benefits should be promoted according to length of time in your career; new to the industry, 5-10 years, and seasoned professional. Some of the benefits may overlap, but can be promoted differently.

Judith Greifer
Marketing Manager, American Society of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology

Top Takeaways: The five least effective channels for membership acquisition

The speaker mentioned that there are five channels for membership acquisition that are the least effective according to Marketing General’s research. They include:

Exhibiting at other conferences ~ advertising in outside publications ~ social networking sites ~ promotional incentives ~ accreditation promotion

This point was useful as a reminder of how certain activities may have goals other than member acquisition and to create appropriate strategies for those different goals. A few examples: Social networking may work better for retention and engagement over acquisition. Conference exhibition, if not a solid acquisition tool, may help create general awareness (and can be a good opportunity to network with other exhibitors who might exhibit at your conference).

Meghan McLaughlin
Marketing and Membership Coordinator, American Pain Society and American Society of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology

Top Takeaway: What members value changes over time.

It is important for the association, and particularly the marketer, to recognize the needs of all members. Segmenting the members is key and will ultimately help with retention. Each membership phase (early career, mid-career, and experienced members) needs to see the value of the association, and it is our job to showcase the advantages of belonging at all career levels.

Allison Taller
Account Manager, Hospice Medical Director Certification Board

Top Takeaway: Direct mailing is still most effective.

Ahh today’s marketing work, always shouting “use social media!”, “build email campaigns!”, “technology is key!”, but I think sometimes we miss the fact that a personal touch and tangible items are still very effective. Even then, we focus so much on compelling content and the way a letter or brochure is designed, but what about the packaging? We have to get customers to OPEN the compelling letter first, right? One example from the Marketing General webinar that really stood out to me was the idea of colored envelopes. In this case, the speaker was referring to Sirius satellite radio. He had just purchased a car with a 3 month Sirius trial. As the months went by, first he received a letter in a blue envelope saying “here’s how to continue the music”. A few weeks later, he received a letter in a yellow envelope saying “hey, you only have 1 month left, you should renew!” Finally, he started receiving letters in red envelopes warning of the final few weeks of his service. If it came in a plain white envelope, would he have even paid attention to the letter inside? What a compelling campaign and affordable way to try something new and track the effectiveness!

Did you sit in on the webinar? Do you have your top takeaways to share, or thoughts on the takeaways our staff mention above? Please head over to our Facebook page to leave a comment and let us know.