Idea Bank: A Gift Wrapped Benefit

A free peek at a benefit turns active nonmembers into members.

What’s the great idea? Gift cards for nonmembers to access members-only resources

Who’s doing it? European Association for the Study of the Liver

What’s involved? To celebrate its 50th anniversary last year, EASL handed out gift cards to nonmember annual meeting attendees that would provide access to its members-only website, LiverTree. The attendees could use the card to tap into webcasts and other content anytime between the April conference and the end of the year.

“It was a way to hopefully generate some buzz and get people interested in becoming members of EASL,” says Edward Pramuk, manager of education and scientific activities.

About 1,500 nonmembers logged in using their gift cards and became active LiverTree users, causing website usage to increase by 50 percent from the previous year. At the end of the period, EASL saw a small portion of those users become full members.

What are people saying? “The best way that we got feedback was when people’s free subscription ran out. We got a lot of people that complained, so we encouraged them to become members,” Pramuk says. “So we knew that people were active, we knew that people were using it, and people were interested.”

Though EASL will not distribute gift cards again this year, the response made clear the usefulness and importance of its online resources. He says: “It is giving us food for thought in the future for how to better market this and how to utilize our online education portal for membership and other revenue.”

(Handout photo)

Alex Beall

By Alex Beall

Alex Beall is an associate editor for Associations Now with a masters in journalism and a penchant for Instagram. MORE

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