Membership Hack: There’s No ‘I’ in Member

In communications with members, do you talk too much about yourself? The Society for Vascular Ultrasound removes ‘I’ or ‘we’ statements from member materials and replaces them with member-focused language.

How to hack it? The Society for Vascular Ultrasound focuses intentionally on how it talks to members about benefits, products, services, and events. Periodically, SVU reviews marketing language and removes any instance of the words “I” or “we.”

“Rewrite all of your materials and your communications, so that it focuses on what the member will get,” says Scott Oser, SVU director of industry relations and member recruitment. Examples: “You can take your career to the next level. You can expand your knowledge to perform better in your job. And you can save money by taking advantage of member-only discounts.”

Why does it work? A concentrated, staff-wide effort to review marketing and promotional language can help an association recruit, retain, and win back members. “It is important to review language on a regular basis,” Oser says. He recommends quarterly reviews, at a minimum.

What’s the bonus? This practice can be particularly effective for member recruitment and win-back campaigns. “Of course, if you are launching a campaign and it is not at your regular review time, you should review that language immediately as part of the campaign development,” Oser says.

(iStock/Getty Images Plus)

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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