Friday Buzz: Can Podcasts Drive Membership?

Podcasts may be a membership growth opportunity for your association. Also: how to prevent phishing attacks in your national and local chapters.

Offering exclusive content to members is a great way to create value and entice new subscribers. Your association may already be offering exclusive white papers, magazines, and online portals, but have you considered using podcasts as a way to gain new members?

Digiday recently took a detailed look at how Slate leverages its podcasts to grow its premium membership tier, Slate Plus. Last week, during its popular “Trumpcast” series, Slate conducted a pledge drive. Episodes were interrupted by staff to give listeners reasons to sign on for paid membership.

Slate told Digiday the pledge drive drove hundreds of sign-ups—adding four times as many subscribers as the average number in a week. Slate plans to replicate the pledge drive in other podcasts.

The beauty of podcasts is that they’re habit-forming. “When you listen to a podcast every week, it inevitably becomes a real presence in your mind, in the way that reading a writer’s articles does not,” said Slate Plus editorial director Gabriel Roth. “There’s an intimacy with podcasts that makes people interested in getting more.”

Prevent Phishing Attacks

Phishing attacks can happen to anyone, even those with some cybersecurity savvy. It’s important that everyone in your organization knows how to spot a phishing email so that your association’s financial information and member data are protected. Some of your local chapters might have tight protections; others might be more lax. How can you get everyone on the same page?

Start with mandatory compliance with your organization’s business rules, including financial guidelines. “Instruct chapters to always follow their payment-processing policy, for example, requiring two signatures for approval,” writes Mark Prevost in a post for the Billhighway blog. “They should also follow rules for sharing member or attendee lists—another common phishing request.”

Prevost offers suggestions for implementing chapter financial controls and technology practices, providing cybersecurity training, and eliminating digital vulnerabilities.

Other Links of Note

Reaching your staff. Kivi’s Nonprofit Communications Blog shares the why and how of using video internally.

Organizational superpowers. Know Your Own Bone reveals how cultural organizations triumph over private companies.

Meetings help associations achieve their goals. The SocialPoint blog delivers a list of 18 strong stats that showcase the value of events.


Raegan Johnson

By Raegan Johnson

Raegan Johnson is a contributor to Associations Now. MORE

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