Rules of Engagement: Going All In

Why your association should commit to data-first member engagement.

When the Credit Union National Association set out to boost participation in its affiliated professional societies in 2015, it sought a 20 percent increase in the number of credit unions with at least one employee enrolled in all six councils.

By the end of the marketing campaign, dubbed “Go All In With CUNA Councils,” that goal was a distant memory, as the effort delivered a 64 percent improvement. And, monetarily, CUNA saw a 361 percent return on investment, says Natalie Sherry, MSIMC, CUDE, membership manager for CUNA Councils, because it kept the message simple. “We wanted the campaign to be about the credit union,” she says. Here’s how:

1. Ask members a question about themselves. It’s an old communications trick, but it works. “We really focused on asking the question, ‘Does your credit union have a member in each of the six councils?’” says Sherry.

2. Show members their own engagement data. CUNA then provided the answer, with individualized data showing each credit union exactly how it measured up. “We really took a data-first, creative-second approach with this,” Sherry says.

3. Give them a nudge to act. The poker-inspired “All In” theme for the campaign was capped with incentives both small and large: New council members who joined during the promotion received $100 off dues, and all-in credit unions were entered in a drawing for an $11,000 prize package.

The success of “All In” earned CUNA an ASAE Gold Circle Award and return of the promotion in 2016.

(Michael Blann/Thinkstock)

Joe Rominiecki

By Joe Rominiecki

Joe Rominiecki, manager of communications at the Entomological Society of America, is a former senior editor at Associations Now. MORE

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