Customer reviews play an important part in today’s purchase decision-making cycle. The everyday consumer now has many, many platforms for telling the world their unfiltered thoughts about a product or service experience. As a consumer, this can be very helpful. We can turn to each other to learn more about something before a purchase is made. But as an organization, it’s a fine line to walk.
A mentor of mine once said that those who are unhappy with you tend to have the loudest voices. People are often more willing to take the time to share a negative experience, so it’s wise to have a plan in place for if that should occur.
That being said, one of the most effective ways an organization can demonstrate the value of its product or service is by leveraging their happy customers to become evangelists for their brand. Telling customer stories is a powerful tool: identified and told thoughtfully, prospects will see themselves in the evangelists and naturally gravitate toward the brand.
As an association, however, you have a unique advantage. You REALLY know your customers (read: members) – their engagement levels, their needs, their pain points. Between the data in your AMS and your personal relationships, you can easily identify the happy and loyal among your membership. Start, for example, by looking at the ones who spend their budgets on non-dues revenue, come to events, participate on committees, and renew on time ever year.
A referral program is one way to leverage these members. Offer a dues discount to them and any new member they refer over a certain period. This will, at the very least, have your happy members singing your praises around the water cooler.
There is plenty of opportunity with your association advocates, beyond amplifying your message through them. Engage these members to uncover what’s working! Analyze their activity to get an idea of which of your programs and services will appeal most to prospective members. Or, simply ask! Administer a survey to your top 10% of engaged members. You never know where their answers will lead you!
But more to the point of this blog post: finding your happy members will lead you to uncover how you can build a completely happy membership. It will help you find what makes you different. And that, my friends, is powerful.
Ready to identify and understand your association advocates? Our newest eBook, How to Build an Effective Member Retention Plan, guides you through the steps – and gives you the framework for both a short- and long-term retention plan. Get your free download: