Defining the Process for the Decision to Join

FEBRUARY 14, 2023 / Tips & Insights

By Tony Rossell, Senior Vice President

We often hear the question, “Why does it take so many contacts to convince an individual or company to join our association?” The pat answer from marketers is that it takes seven contacts to turn a prospect into a buyer.  

However, as opposed to just doing more, establishing an understanding of the decision process involved in joining an association allows for a more nuanced strategy to be put in place.

One explanation offered by psychologists on the stages that a person goes through in making a decision is a theory called the Transtheoretical Model (TTM). The model says there are five stages to behavior change: Precontemplation, Contemplation, Planning, Action, and Maintenance.

As ap...


Applying Reasoned Action Theory to your Membership Recruitment Efforts

FEBRUARY 06, 2023 / Tips & Insights

By Tony Rossell, Senior Vice President

For many years, social scientists have used Reasoned Action Theory (RAT) to evaluate a person's intention to take an action. Daniel O’Keefe, a preeminent scholar in the field, says of RAT, “It is unquestionably the most influential general framework for understanding the determinants of voluntary action.”

A simplistic overview of the theory lays out four drivers that determine an intention leading to a behavior. The first is Attitude with the components of belief (it is a good thing) and evaluation (there is motivation to act). The second is Injunction which is the influence of others (colleagues, friends, or professors). Next is Determinants w...


5 Tips to Drive Membership Growth in 2023

JANUARY 25, 2023 / Tips & Insights

After facing several years of unprecedented global events, associations have begun to emerge from the heavy toll of the pandemic.  Associations are back to focusing on membership growth. We are now gathering  responses for the  2023 edition of the Membership Marketing Benchmarking Report. However, let’s look back at some of the top findings from our 2022 results to see the tactics that other associations used to achieve their recruitment goals. Here’s what we found:

1. Adding New Members is a Top Driver of Total Membership Growth

In 2022, we found that 43% of all associations reported ne...


Tracking and Measuring for Membership Marketing Success

JANUARY 11, 2023 / Tips & Insights

By Tony Rossell, Senior Vice President

In my book, Membership Recruitment, I share an eye-opening experience with a client. For several years, this association had been doing a sizeable annual mailing to recruit new members. The mailing went to a portfolio of outside lists totaling over 100,000 records. Results were below expectations, so they asked for assistance to improve returns.

The obvious place to start may have been looking at the creative or the offer for the mailing. Instead, we ran an analysis matching the new members that had come in compared to the lists mailed. That is where the eye-opening experience happened. Fully one-third of the lists used year after...


3 Membership Renewal Best Practices for Associations

SEPTEMBER 22, 2022 / Tips & Insights

If you’re wondering how to increase your member retention, keep reading. In this blog, you’ll learn how to retain members through membership retention strategies and membership renewal best practices. When renewal and retention are done well, it can be a contribrutor to increasing your overall membership.

To start, let’s review the top reasons members don’t renew according to our latest benchmarking data:

Lack of engagement

Could not justify membership costs

Left the field, industry, or profession

Budget cuts/economic hardship

Not sure why your members don’t renew? Ask.

In addition to understanding the top r...