Guest Blogger, Julie Bernhard: How to Recruit New Members Through Your E-Newsletter
A survey was published recently that revealed some not so good news for the association membership sphere. According to the survey, approximately 41 percent of mid-and large-sized associations are reporting stagnant or declining membership levels. While the numbers may be brow-raising, it doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom. The key to turning the tables in this recruitment revelation could lie where it is least expected.
An e-newsletter can do a whole lot more than inform. It has the potential to be the recruiting team’s newest best friend – if utilized appropriately. Rather than serving exclusively to report the latest events, adding some bait to lure in prospects could have some serious returns.
E-newsletters recruit well for a variety of reasons. First and foremost, they are kind to the pocketbook. Whenever it comes time to launch a new recruitment campaign, there is usually a cost associated. From postage to new marketing collateral, it can be pricy. Adding new prospects to the subscriber list is usually little to no cost with most email service providers – and completed within seconds. The members are able to get a sneak peak of what the association has to offer, without having to spend a dime.
Secondly, emails go where the prospects are. There really isn’t a more direct medium for reaching the potential. According to a recent report by ExactTarget, 91 percent of consumers check their email every day. This grants an almost 100 percent chance of reaching the destination. Numbers like that can’t even be promised from a recruitment event – which depends solely on who shows up.
The Vacation Rental Managers Association has taken advantage of that statistic and is currently promoting their latest recruitment campaign via their news brief. Their most recent promotion encourages members to “recruit and earn.” The recruiter of the first 50 new manager members joining during the offer will each earn a $50 cash award. With just a touch of a button, the info can be easily forwarded to any other interested parties. Spreading the word couldn’t be made easier.
Email newsletters can even recruit members indirectly. A campaign isn’t always necessary when drawing in some fresh faces. Many of those on the fence just want to know, “what’s in it for them?” The email newsletter is a quick and efficient way to deliver just that.
Adding a section to the email strictly devoted to exclusive member events and discounts could be enough of a draw to get them to hop on over. Tradeshows are always crowd pleasers but can be expensive for smaller businesses who don’t have the budgets to attend. Include these exclusive discounts and offers and watch the good times “enroll.”
The statistics speak for themselves. If email isn’t in the recruitment office now, it might be time to hire it on, full-time.