It’s a fact, personalized interactions can have a positive impact on member retention….but who has time to reach out to members on an individual basis? Enter – digital media.
For many of your members, if they don’t have a lot of interaction with you or your staff, the chamber’s just another organization that they pay dues to.
You need to differentiate yourself by making sure they feel the love – that they feel like you know them and they know you. The good news is that as much as technology can distance us from personal interaction, for an organization like yours, it actually can bring you closer to your members and help you build stronger relationships and develop authentic connections with them.
One really simple way to create a vibe that you are a personable organization is by changing the email address on your outgoing mass member emails.
So instead of that email coming from “info@xyzchamber” or “newsletter@xyzchamber” put a real name in there. If you are worried an influx of responses into your main email account, create a second account that’s a modification, so for me instead of firstname.lastname@example.org, it might come from email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
That creates a personal tie between your member and your organization. Every personal tie you create gives your members more of a reason to stay connected to the chamber.
Want to improve your retention game? Get on social media and start engaging with your members. I’m not talking about posting your events on your Facebook page and asking them to like you. I’m talking about going on to their pages, liking their pages, following them on Twitter and commenting on their posts, re-tweeting their content, patting them on the back (in this public forum) for jobs well done, sharing their posts with your followers. It’s easy, if you take a little time to develop a plan and stick to it, you can make a real impact.
When you spend a little time on their platforms, it’s the equivalent of a virtual visit to their location. You are giving them reinforcement, recognition and personal attention. Everyone likes public recognition, this is just a different way of doing it. For them, it feels good to have the chamber’s attention. It conveys that you know they are out there and you appreciate what they are doing. Your organization has a high profile in your community, and whether you realize it or not, it’s a big deal for a member to get the chamber’s attention.
When you reach out online, you benefit from this personal connection that you’ve made with your member, plus, you get visibility in front of their friends/followers. Maybe there are prospects that are in their audience. When they see your messages, all of a sudden, you’re no longer a faceless organization, you are an organization that knows its members and cares about what’s happening with them. You become more personable and approachable. Who knows, their wheels may start turning and they may start thinking that they should join the chamber too.