Meetings Mean New Members

Use your next convention to build overall association member numbers.

While the most effective way to attract new association members is word-of-mouth, not far behind is promotion prior to or during a conference. In fact, Marketing General Inc.’s 2013 Membership Marketing Benchmarking Report found that growing associations see 52 percent of new member awareness happening at association events. Here’s how to capitalize on that newfound visibility:

Give a deep discount. New members of the International Franchise Association are offered a two-year introductory program that includes free registration to the annual conference. “We make no money on the two-year introductory plan, but we want to get them into the convention because we think it’s going to be such a great resource for them that they’ll never leave us,” says Debra Moss, IFA Vice President of Operations.

Show them what they’re missing. Prior to the event, list keynote speakers, topics and agenda items on the association’s website to entice potential non-member attendees. Post-event, package smart, concise event roundup reports and sell them to bring in new eyes as well as additional event revenue.

Let exhibitors bring them in. Give vendors and exhibitors the opportunity to invite potential attendees not already on the original invite list. Offer them a discount or an exhibitor hall-only pass to pique new interest.

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