The Center for Association Resources

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Is an association management firm focused on helping Non-Profit associations succeed in their mission.

Member survey research

Another in a series of articles related to association management selected from our reading list by:
Robert O. Patterson, JD
CEO/ Principal
The Center for Association Resources, Inc.

Non-profits must provide constant feedback to their membership groups in order to develop a better system for communication, fundraising, organizing and developing solid relationships to expand partnerships and recruit more volunteers.  Asking questions of your members is the best way to obtain direct feedback from your members.  The first thing to note is communication.  How often is it appropriate to make contact with your volunteers?  Maybe a weekly update via an email mailing list is appropriate, whereas a phone call to members may only be required once a year.

Members need to know that their money that is paid in the form of dues is a worthwhile investment for them, and being updated about the new events in the area is important.  Perhaps you can break up the email list into communicating every two weeks, the upcoming events; or a monthly newsletter with breakdowns of what is happening.  This way the member is not overwhelmed, is offered the opportunity to participate and work with the group, but they are not constantly inundated with messages from your group.

Another important research tool is fundraising growth potential with your members.  How often should you connect with them on trying to make money?  Maybe once a quarter you should send out an email that contains a direct payment opportunity; and there may also be a specialized event they can participate in.  Do not underestimate the power of the people on your mailing list: reach out to them for donations, not only in monetary form. There may be an artist in your organization that can donate a piece to auction, a caterer who may be able to provide food at a discounted price, or a photographer who can take pictures at an event for your website.  These are the critical pieces that can be put together if one really sees them as opportunities.

Its not about the money, it is truly about the people.  There are members who can be interested in the organization, they are the ones who are going to help expand your company.  Developing a simple to use online survey will provide value so you can better understand your membership market.  It is important because it allows you to understand what your members want from you, while they can also provide you with their skills to compensate your business.  Their time is valuable, And one should not discount the possibility that two hours of time is less of a contribution to your organization than a donation of $50.  Those photos taken can impact your website which will then impact your web visitors, their donations and their willingness to devote time.

Filed under: Association Resources, Center for Association Resources, Fund Raising, Leadership, Marketing, Non-Profit, Strategy, The Center for Assocation Resources info, , , , ,

August 2017
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