Tuesday Buzz: How to Handle Potential Members on Tight Budgets

Don’t abandon potential members who can’t afford your dues. There are things your organization can do to keep them involved. Also: Asking lots of questions during an important board meeting can do more harm than good.

Membership-based organizations put forth a lot of effort to recruit new members. But what should associations when a person is interested in membership but unable to join simply because he or she doesn’t have the money?

Folks who are passionate about your organization may still be willing to participate in other ways. Try sending out an email asking them to volunteer. “This way people who care about your organization can find a way to get involved—and even get a test run of what it’s like to be a part of your association,” suggests a recent WebLink blog post. It’s also a good way to keep in touch with nonmembers who may gain the ability to pay for a membership down the line.

WebLink also recommends becoming a little more flexible by offering payment plans.  And make it easy for them to pay with a simple online payment process. A payment process that requires a lot of steps may deter potential members who are on the fence.

Stop Meeting Hijacks

You’ve finally juggled schedules enough to get busy board members in the same room for an important meeting. Now, you have to keep them focused and on task. But a meeting can quickly go off the rails when board members start asking too many questions.

MultiBriefs, a publisher of association-branded email publications, provides a few smart tips for handling, “I just have a question.”

Prepare for distracting questions by coming up with a prewritten response like, “That’s a great question, let’s take it up during the break.” You can also have board members write questions on index cards that will be gathered by staff and answered after the meeting. This way, board members still get their questions asked without detracting from the purpose of the meeting.

Other Links of Note

Don’t think of your digital strategy as separate from your business strategy. CMSWire reveals mistakes to avoid when coming up with your digital experience.

Get more out of your volunteers. Engaging Volunteers shares 12 tips for getting people involved with your organization.

Are your events as successful as you think? The Bizzabo Blog reveals the 20 event KPIs you need to measure.


Raegan Johnson

By Raegan Johnson

Raegan Johnson is a contributor to Associations Now. MORE

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