Never a Transaction: A Relationship

I recently attended a conference that featured Chris Brogan (top blogger) as a general session speaker on membership activities and social media.

His statement, and the title of this blog post, is so true.  We must never let our members think they're just another transaction.

Remember the previous post on membership equations, especially the "Lifetime Value of a Member" blog post which can be found HERE.

That's why you build relationships and never treat your members like a transaction.

You want members for twenty plus years, not two!

Think about the products you love and I bet you feel as if you have a relationship with that product/company -- I do with Canon cameras.

I'm getting that way with Apple products -- I haven't transitioned completely from the PC to the MAC, but it's just a matter of time, I know it.  I currently go back and forth between the two.

Why, because Apple builds a relationship with you.  They make you feel special.  When I buy an Apple product, I feel like the relationship is getting stronger, it’s not just another transaction.

If you're like me, you started with the shuffle, moved on to the iPod, iTouch, iPad, iPad Mini, and let's not forget the iPhone (multiple versions) we bought somewhere along the way.

That's a relationship, not a transaction!

Lapsed Membership Mailings

What's your strategy?

Do you conduct an annual lapsed member mailing?  Or do you conduct it twice a year?

Lapsed mailing campaigns can be very effective.

The key is to make sure your data is up-to-date.  In our business people are moving around and changing their contact information on a regular basis.

Clean your data, and send that lapsed mailing out today.  You'd be surprised what your results might be.

I've been managing membership campaigns for over 15 years now and it is a part of my direct mail strategy.  And by the way, it has always generated money and members.

I've done the mailings in two ways:

  • Invoice only; or
  • Invoice with a cover letter talking about the latest activities of the organization that they may have missed.

At the end of the day, you want the invoice to get in the hands of the finance department, since they pay the bills.

In my experience, I've noticed that if you just send the invoice, it gets forwarded to the finance department and you'll get a quicker response then with a cover letter.

What's important is that you do one or the other.

Get started today with that lapsed membership mailing.  Find out which method works best for your chamber!

For resources on membership marketing go to Marketing General, Inc. HERE.