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How associations can use analytics to boost membership

Posted By Administration, Thursday, July 18, 2019
Updated: Wednesday, July 17, 2019

What are analytics?


Analytics are a brilliant tool used to research possible trends that any industry can benefit from using, especially associations. Looking at analytics is all about seeing what is working and what isn’t, and then making improvements.


Associations often have one thing on their mind: increasing membership. How to increase membership, how to provide the best experience and value for members, etc. They want to grow their membership, but analytics as a tool are often overlooked or ignored.




While it may be daunting, analytics can help guide your organization and grow membership. Here are four uses of analytics that can help associations grow their membership.

  1. Auditing
  2. Having a good overall experience with an organization is like a puzzle: many pieces fit together to create the full picture, and a positive online experience is one of them. Associations need to maintain a strong web presence in order to provide a positive online experience as well as gain and retain members. By using analytics, associations can audit their websites and see what is working and what isn’t, such as 404 errors and bounce rates, and then make improvements to provide a better experience for current or potential members.

  3. Monitoring social accounts
  4. Everyone is active on social media these days, including businesses. Social platforms are versatile and an important part of any marketing strategy because of their ability to drive awareness, engagement, and start conversations. Analytics allow associations to start and monitor the online conversation of their brand and gain a deeper understanding of which social campaigns are effective. This understanding can then be applied to create a better experience for prospects and members by targeting content that specifically fits their needs and the online conversation.

  5. Paid Marketing
  6. If an association invests in paid marketing, they want to make sure the campaign is effective. Whether it is A/B testing or promotional content, analytics are a useful tool for evaluating paid marketing because they allow associations to compare options. By choosing the most successful option, associations provide content in the right context for their members.

  7. SEO
  8. So why does auditing, social media, and paid marketing matter? It contributes to improving Search Engine Optimization, often referred to as SEO. At the end of the day, associations strive to enhance the user experience. Search engine bot crawlers read a websites’ pages from top to bottom and rank the site based on the quality fundamental SEO practices executed. Examples include meta tag, fresh content, and alt tags. Bots will determine how high or low a site will appear on the Search Engine Results Page (SERP), which affects the visibility of a site in a search engine.

The use of analytics has transformed the world of marketing, bringing endless growth opportunities to organizations. Utilizing analytics in your strategy and planning can be key to keeping your organization relevant and thriving. So the next time analytics comes up in a strategy meeting, don’t shy away, instead dive right in and help grow your organization.

Tags:  Analytics  Associations  Marketing Strategy  Marketing Tools  Membership  Membership Growth 

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5 Must-Do Content Marketing Strategies for Associations Creating Awareness, Driving Value Proposition

Posted By Administration, Thursday, July 11, 2019
Developing effective marketing strategies that drive measurable results can be tricky. It requires analysis, critical thinking and clear Calls to Action (CTA). This is vitally important for associations in an ever-increasing and competitive marketplace.

 

Associations often focus their marketing efforts on conference and event promotion without establishing the organization as the thought-leader in the profession. Before marketing events, webinars and conferences, we need to communicate the Value Proposition of the association to establish credibility and broaden our base and grow our community.

 

While for-profits have much big budgets and financial resources, content marketing can still be effectively executed for non-profits. And associations have a unique advantage when it comes to content marketing – Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) in the membership who can share their expertise and drive collaboration, conversation and community.

  

One of the biggest challenge’s associations face today is answering key value questions, like “Why should I join?” or “How will this association benefit me today?” As a large portion of our association base of members are nearing retirement which underscores the need to gain early and mid-career member base to remain relevant.

One key marketing strategy that organizations are effectively using is content marketing which can take many forms. With access to SMEs, associations can utilize this strategy to drive membership value and drive engagement. A content marketing strategy will be unique to each organization or association, but they share the same foundation.

 

5 Must-Do Content Marketing Strategies:

  1. Fill in the “gaps”
    Before marketing conferences and product, provide context by creating awareness of the organization with relevant content through the website, webinars and highlighting the expertise of conference presenters. This will prevent a knowledge gaps and drive conversions. Associations provide value to members and stakeholders by being the “go-to resource” through sharing industry articles, writing blogs, developing newsletters, and sparking conversations on discussion boards and choosing speakers who are presenting on the most important relevant topics.

  2. Meet members where they are
    It’s important to keep in mind that not all audiences are active on the same platforms. In order to provide useful, meaningful content and a valuable experience for members, associations must use platforms that are relevant to the audience and adopt a multi-faceted content approach by utilizing different mediums such as social, email, and direct mail.

  3. Be adaptable and flexible Change is constant for our audiences. By listening and adapting to member needs, associations can provide value, creating a better experience that is appropriate for the audience.

  4. Cater to the audience – personalize!
    A crucial part of providing value is understanding who the members are and tailoring to their specific needs. Use a style, language, tone, and even content that is familiar, meaningful, and relevant to them. By giving the audience exactly what they need, associations can show the members their value.

  5. Be consistent
    Consistency is key in content marketing. When content is scheduled and shared frequently, associations can start to build a following. Not only that, but they also gain trust and are seen as a reliable source of information. By consistently posting content, associations both build brand authority and provide value to the audience by sharing useful and meaningful resources.

Through all five of the rules, there is a common theme: a focus on the members, both current and prospective. In order to provide the best, meaningful experience to the audience, associations can adopt this holistic approach to membership. So it is time to refocus and watch your association grow for the better.

 

Tags:  Association Growth  Associations  Content Marketing  Marketing Strategy  Membership 

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