Membership Hack: Quick Response With Texting

The National Association of Sports Commissions is piloting a text message communication system to improve response time when members need help.

How to hack it? When you have a question and need an immediate answer, do you call or text? More than a third of Americans say they prefer to text. That’s a growing trend that the National Association of Sports Commissions says it wants to stay ahead of. Recently, NASC launched a text messaging service for members, using an app called TextUs.

Elizabeth Young, NASC’s director of membership and marketing, manages the stream of incoming texts from members. The service uses a communication dashboard that can connect to a member database, to know who’s texting. For NASC, a small-staff association, texting helps to field individual questions, comments, and complaints.

Why does it work? In a word: speed. Young estimates that about 10 percent of members are using the service right now. “A number of our members are constantly on the go and traveling from city to city,” she says. “Texting is often the fastest way to get in touch.” Soon, members who opt in to the text service will receive important notifications, including deadlines for event registration or membership renewal.

What’s the bonus? The service debuted earlier this year at NASC’s annual meeting, and it immediately became an onsite helpline for attendees. “At the meeting, we were able to field and compartmentalize questions or comments like: Where’s registration? Where are the buses? Or, this meeting room is too cold.”

(TextUs screenshot)

Tim Ebner

By Tim Ebner

Tim Ebner is a senior editor for Associations Now. He covers membership, leadership, and governance issues. Email him with story ideas or news tips. MORE

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