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Posted on January 15, 2018 by Membership Space
Categories: Membership
A good community leader is viewed as a leader in their niche but to be a great leader, you need to be skillful with short-term and long-term planning.  As a matter of fact, the best business people consider time in two regards – the next 5 years and the next 100 years.

Maybe you don’t have to think about your online community’s position in the next 100 years, but it’s crucial to make considerations beyond your monthly or yearly targets.  Have you thought about how you will set your community up for longevity and a good performance in the distant future?
 
Run An Ambassador Program

Representatives create a win-win situation since your community prospers when they spread the word about your organization and bring in new members.  It’s also a win for the ambassadors as they get to participate in a cause they care for and support.  Often, club membership software makes it easier to manage ambassador programs and help the community evolve.
 
Provide Value By Mentoring

If your target is to retain younger members, you must offer them unique value they find beneficial such as a mentoring program.  Similar to ambassador programs, mentoring programs are good for a variety of reasons.  Youthful members are able to find value and benefit from the knowledge of seasoned members in your community.

This not only gives them a reason to stay but to return frequently and help others.  The mentoring program may also empower seasoned business people in your community to find meaning in sharing what they know with the next generation.

Once you set up your program, implement tactics through club membership software that causes members to pair up so the community will see organic growth.  In some cases, you may see positive results if you unlock particular zones of your community to non-members.  Just make sure it’s done strategically so the community is given positive exposure while continuing to evolve at the same time.
Posted on December 22, 2017 by Membership Space
Categories: Membership
The purpose of membership websites is to engage and inform customers in a way that they become loyal to your association, only buying from you.  But, how do you accurately gauge the loyalty of your customers?  The following tips are reliable metrics that show your clients’ interaction with your association on the internet and how likely it is they might stay.
 
Number Of Members

Look at the current number of people that have joined your membership websites.  Compare those figures with previous figures for the same metric.  For instance, take the total number of members a year ago and compare it with the current number of memberships for this year.  If there’s an increase, it indicates loyalty as members are continuing to renew their memberships while new people join.
 
Engagement Rates

These rates indicate how active your customers are regarding the online community.  Obviously, a higher engagement rate shows members have a strong interest in your community and find it to be beneficial to them.  This metric takes into account how the members ask and answer queries, visit pages, and post comments.  Typically, the more active they are, the more likely they tend to remain loyal to your association.
 
Login Rates

This one considers the difference between the total number of logins and unique logins.  The retention rates will be higher when the difference between the two is greater.  Of course, you want the number of unique logins to be high as that indicates that new people are checking out your association.  But, when the total number of logins is even higher, that means old members are loyal to your venture.

These metrics are not 100% accurate and actual client retention rate might be a little higher or lower.  Even so, they are very dependable and will undoubtedly reveal just how loyal your customers are.  Remember these metrics going forward to ensure you recognize when loyalty may be declining and give customers a reason to stay.
Posted on December 11, 2017 by Membership Space
Categories: Membership
Volunteer work is vital to your association as it lessens the day-to-day workload while building a healthy relationship among members.  Likewise, it helps a majority of members acquire new skills they can apply when visiting club websites.

However, most members will not volunteer without some form of motivation so convincing them to become volunteers for the association is not easy.  But, with the following strategies, you can inspire even those who have never volunteered before to begin and keep doing so.
 
Tailor The Program To Them

The manner in which you design your program for volunteering has a significant impact on whether or not the association members will want to participate.  If you only offer projects with long-term tasks, you might be overlooking a large number of people who would volunteer for small or short-term projects.  Instead, offer a variety of projects so members that may not have as much free time are able to volunteer for projects that coincide with their schedule.
 
Issue Rewards

The truth is most people that get involved with volunteering aim to truly make a difference.  That being the case, it’s incredibly important to show appreciation for their effort with some kind of reward.  If the volunteer work involved the production of certain goods, you could give the volunteers a portion of those goods.  Another means of showing appreciation is to send out handwritten notes or thank the members in person.
 
Assistance When Necessary

Occasionally, people shy away from volunteering work because they don’t know who to get advice from should there be a problem.  Dedicate a small team to assist the volunteers so any difficulty regarding the project may be explained or resolved in a timely manner.  Also, create a section on the club websites specifically for guiding volunteers as clear instructions may convince a member to volunteer regularly!
Posted on November 29, 2017 by Membership Space
Categories: Membership
As an online community organizer, you might often perceive the internet as unpredictable.  Maybe you find it difficult to figure out what people will like or what membership management software will take off next.  For this reason, you may be indecisive about what steps to take in order for your community to grow which can be quite frustrating.

While some aspects of the internet are hard to predict, people’s behavior is quite predictable.  Once you learn the social science that makes them arrive at particular decisions, a marketing campaign can be set up to help your community go viral.
 
The Power Of Secrecy

There’s a secret bar in London known as Please Don’t Tell.  Rather than applying a traditional marketing strategy using street signs, it uses a telephone booth for customers to enter.  Additionally, the name obviously asks people to not share information about it but quite the opposite happens.  It’s called the power of secrecy, people tend to feel burdened to carry the secret and soon start sharing it with others.

With membership management software, keep the power of secrecy in mind and look for ways to use it with your community.  You may talk about an upcoming addition to the community but use a name that suggests it should be a secret.  Most members will feel compelled to share what they know about it increases the chance your community will go viral.
 
The Influence Of Stories

Stories are not only entertaining but also intriguing when delivered the right way.  If someone tells you they joined a community about colleges, you might not find that interesting.  However, if they tell you about a community where they received advice that helped them achieve their goals, you may want to check the community out.
Stories can be applied in a variety of ways through members so the word is spread organically.  The recognition your community gets from going viral may not be global but it could gain you popularity among your target audience which is key to long-term success.
Posted on November 8, 2017 by Membership Space
Categories: Membership
As a membership manager, you might be constantly trying to find ways to be more productive and improve the membership.  With regard to that, you have to generate content, sort it, and upload it.  Then, you regularly check the satisfaction of members and try to meet their needs suitably.

Handling all of these tasks may be a challenge without club membership software.  You need to be more organized and maintain that so you keep track of everything in order for the membership to be successful.  Here are 5 apps that will do just that while increasing productivity.
 
Evernote

Evernote provides you with cloud storage for files with tags for easy access later on.  If you happen to come across a blog post you like, you can save it as well on Evernote and use it to inspire your next article.
 
Hootsuite

Hootsuite helps you manage multiple social media accounts while being cost-effective.  It also offers you valuable insights and reports that make it easier to manage or adjust your campaigns appropriately.  With Chrome, you can get a Hootsuite extension to share your write-ups effortlessly.
 
Feedly

Occasionally, there are times where membership managers have to search for content that provides value to members.  With Feedly, you can subscribe to websites that offer you rich content so you never miss their posts.  Also, articles may be saved for offline reading and used to create content in the future.
 
IFTTT & Streaks

If this then that, or IFTTT, is an app that allows you to create conditional statements for scenarios.  For instance, you can set it up to notify you when a member posts a comment to one of your articles.  That way, you can respond in a timely manner which makes members feel important.

Streaks is an Apple software app that helps you develop productive habits.  With Streaks, you can track your objectives for the day such as answering questions from members or posting a welcome video for new members.  Keep in mind, apps and club membership software can heavily influence how productive managers are so use these apps to streamline
Posted on October 23, 2017 by Membership Space
Categories: Membership
Membership websites offer you an easy way of engaging more targeted audiences as compared to social media and other platforms.  Nonetheless, connecting with your audience can still be difficult unless you have interactive content that draws and keeps their attention.  Here, you will learn how and why video creates a deeper connection with your members.
 
Why Video?

Video helps you create a face to face relationship with your audience.  Community members will have a clearer idea of who you are and be able to identify you.  It’s not surprising to hear someone say your name out loud but that is hard to achieve while only using text and images.

By uploading videos, you make it easier for people to feel more at ease relating to you.  A simple welcome video might take a member from considering a one month membership to budgeting a whole year into their membership costs.

Here are a few ways to use personal videos:
 
  • Welcoming new members
  • Sending congratulatory messages
  • Thanking members for referrals
  • Recognizing events
Getting Started

There are a variety of software options which are free that can help you do personal videos.  Tools like Viewedlt, Wirewax, Metta, Loom, and Soapbox are easy to use and require very little technical skills to create an engaging video.  Often, they have a tutorial that guides you through the process.  Where you start is up to you but it might be better to start out simple by creating welcome videos using free video creation tools.

Once you become familiar with that, assess the results before deciding to step up to more advanced videos.  This is important as each outcome is different so find out what works for your audience.  The success of membership websites relies on many factors, but compelling videos can help get new members on board that remain loyal to your organization.
Posted on October 2, 2017 by Membership Space
Categories: Membership
With the internet, news regarding mistakes about your organization and how issues get handled can spread rapidly.  When customer support is slow to respond, visitors and members might voice their experience on a blog or social media which can tarnish the reputation of your membership.

Even though social media is great for attracting members, it’s not the best platform for addressing problems or issues that members may have with your membership.  To avoid having that happen, consider utilizing club websites to create online communities for solving any issues in an efficient manner.  Here are a few reasons why club websites help diminish lousy customer service.
 
Clients Help One Another

With an online community, your work of providing solutions reduces as people connect and help one other.  For instance, if one person has an issue with a particular feature, another person that has encountered the same situation will likely share what helped them.  This sort of networking encourages all members to become more engaged and that reduces the need for customer service.
 
Reach Many Customers Simultaneously

Traditional client support systems such as email and phone calls only focus on helping one person at a time.  Club websites offer a place where common issues or frequently asked questions can be posted so everyone is able to view them.  As a result, you help address queries that other members may have so it eliminates the potential for an issue to develop.

Information posted online never takes a break like support teams do which means it remains accessible to members or visitors, even during holidays and weekends.  Also, it is more convenient to update a website page than it is to repeatedly have to respond to emails where the same question is being asked.  Remember, customer service can speak volumes about your organization and members expect you to respond to their needs promptly!
Posted on September 20, 2017 by Membership Space
Categories: Membership
A forum for your membership website is not only a great way to engage members but it is better than social media in some cases.  Even so, the engagement rate of your forum may be low unless you take the time to develop it into a growing place that attracts members.  Membership management software can help you do just that and revitalize your website into a leading source for valuable information.
 
Discourse

Discourse is a relatively new, mobile-friendly option that is open source and has received numerous positive reviews for how flawless it functions.  This choice is a combination of a chat room, Facebook group, and forum.  Discourse has useful features that include the capacity to send out automatic emails and a badge system that makes the forum experience more user-friendly.

Additionally, it supports instant notifications and allows you to see when members are typing a response.  The downside is that you will likely need to use different cloud hosting as the one offered with Discourse is rather expensive.
 
The WordPress Solution

BuddyPress delivers a social site feel with elements like customizable member profiles, member directories, and private messaging while bbPress offers the forums.  Not only is this combination free but it has a key benefit of membership plug-ins being compatible with your existing theme.
The shortcoming with this option is that it doesn’t provide all the features of specialized forum software so other plug-ins may need to be installed.  Fortunately, there are a variety of tutorials and supporting plug-ins available for BuddyPress.
 
Xenforo

Xenforo is an excellent option if you seek a comprehensive forum for your membership.  With this software, your content doesn’t have to be placed on WordPress as Xenforo will host it along with your discussions.  The disadvantage is that it’s not designed to work with WordPress but it can be integrated.  When choosing membership management software, make sure you weigh each forum option and choose the one that works best for you.
Posted on September 5, 2017 by Membership Space
Categories: Membership
Newsletters may not be as effective today as they once were since members have other alternatives that make it easier to stay informed.  Many members follow the membership website as club membership software continues to improve and provide a better experience.  Software may also help generate a newsletter that engages more members as the content in your newsletter should promote the membership website.  The following tips are a great guide towards creating a newsletter that members want to read.
 
Include Relevant & Actionable Information

Newsletters are often easily ignored by members if they don’t contain information that benefits them.  With club membership software, newsletters can be sent out with information that is not only relevant but actionable.  Always use a catchy subject line that attracts the attention of the member so they feel compelled to open the newsletter.
 
Use Links To Boost Traffic

The second tip is to include links in the newsletter that directs the reader to the membership website.  Since newsletters may contain a limited amount of information, it may be useful to include links so readers are able to enjoy more of your content on the website.  Furthermore, links can be used to guide a reader to your forum or signup page.
 
Use Content That Encourages Involvement

In most cases, newsletters reach active and inactive members which means they may be used to build your membership community.  Try publishing profiles of successful members in the newsletter to encourage other members to keep using your services.
 
Benefits

If you have discounts or exclusive content for members, make sure that this is distinctly highlighted in your newsletter.  Additionally, the newsletter should be used to advertise new services or products that benefit visitors and members.  Ensure the newsletter looks professional as it is a reflection of the membership website and indicates to everyone that being a member of your website is worthwhile.
Posted on August 17, 2017 by Membership Space
Categories: Membership
Rewarding loyalty is often the key to gaining new members and retaining old ones.  Membership websites can get an advantage over their competition by offering rewards and incentives that other memberships fail to offer.  Small membership websites may not have the resources to roll out complex loyalty programs, but they can still deliver rewards that will appeal to their members.  Have you thought about what rewards are the most effective?
 
Discounts & Exclusive Access

One way to reward members for loyalty is to give discounts according to how long they have been a member.  Obviously, members who have renewed their membership for many years get a better discount than a person who just signed up to be a member.  When implementing discounts, never be too aggressive as this could lead some people to question the value of your services.

Another option that should be considered for rewarding loyalty is to give members exclusive access to services or products.  Offer them access to content, software, and eBooks before releasing it to visitors.  This will make members feel as though they are getting more value out of their membership and it encourages them to remain loyal.  What else might be beneficial for members?
 
Provide Value That Exceeds

Aside from offering discounts and exclusive access, contests can be easy to run and draw a lot of attention to your membership website.  Not only will it boost your brand but it helps encourage members to be more involved online.
As you strive to gain new members and keep current ones, remember that providing value is the ultimate incentive for members to stay loyal in the future.  The way you reward members for being loyal is often a major influence in how your membership association grows.  However, long-term success is only possible if you keep delivering great value!
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