Do you often find that despite your best efforts, attracting new members is a struggle? You manage everything else with ease and confidence but getting someone to convert from prospect to member is an ever elusive task. It may be that you have some ideas on how to get those members through the door but lack enough funding to properly implement them.
Don’t worry, you’re not alone. In today’s economy many organisations are feeling the pinch. Today we’re going to share with you six ways in which you can attract new members, without spending too much in the process.
1. Enter Plan Of Action Mode
Before you embark on any task, especially one that involves money you’re going to need a plan to keep you on the straight and narrow.
Who’s your target audience? Who is your ideal member? What are their values, where do they spend their time, what are their interests and where do they work?
A great way of really drilling down your specific audience is to create personas – a profile of your ideal members. Two to three should do it. This will help you target the right people so that you’re not wasting time (or money) going after someone who probably wouldn’t be interested in the first place.
2. Get A Website And Blog
If you haven’t already got a website for your organisation then you’re missing a huge source of potential prospects. If you’re reading this, then you’ve most certainly got access to the internet, and stands to reason that millions of other people have too. You can engage these people by making yourself easy to find online.
Setting up a website can literally be as inexpensive as you like. WordPress.com allows you to set up a blog for free with a choice of templates that are simple and easy to implement. A couple of clicks and you’re up and running.
Use your website and blog to write about your club or organisation. Post articles on recent events, what you do and the latest news. Connect your Social Media accounts (if you have them) and share your posts across Twitter, Facebook and Google+. Populate your website with keywords (the words people would use to search for you online) to make you more discoverable. Over time if you’re producing good regular content, and reaching out to people, word will spread, traffic will pick up and you’ll start getting recognised for who you are and what you do.
3. Host An Event Or Open Day
There’s nothing more effective than a massive get-together to get people interested in what you have to offer. Hosting an event or an open day will give prospective members the chance to see for themselves what they’re missing out on and with luck, encourage them to sign up.
Save money by using member management software like PaySubsOnline – we can help you manage your event marketing and online registrations.
The benefit of hosting an event in this way, is that you can automatically broadcast the event to your members – bolstering the numbers for the big day and anyone who wishes to register can do it right there from their smartphone.
4. Giveaway A Freebie
People love to get free stuff – that’s why charities usually include pens in their mail-outs. It uses the premise that you’re getting something for nothing and so feel compelled to do something in return.
Depending on your budget, offer a freebie exclusive to new members. It might be something as simple as a pen with your logo or a snappy PDF with useful tips and tricks and a personalised message if they’re signing up online. It doesn’t have to be extravagant but it will help to entice those people teetering on the edge to take the plunge and join.
5. Get Your Organisation In The News
Getting featured in your local News bulletin or publication can be a real boost to your membership levels. Similarly getting featured for a specific story is usually free so it’s worth utilising these opportunities whenever they arise.
Consider notifying your local press whenever you’re hosting an event or you’ve reached a particularly noteworthy milestone. You might even want to invite them down to an event so they can get a feel for it themselves.
Any article or write-up that results from this can then be shared on your website, social media and mailing list. This will ensure it reaches a wider audience and improves your chances for more sign-ups.
6. Use Social Media
Social Media are low cost resources that will help you market your organisation to the right people. They’re still free, although don’t be blindsided by the time that’s involved to grow it and the growing trend of needing to pay to effectively reach people. They can boost your presence online in a powerful way.
Facebook and Twitter are great networks to start with – it’s likely you already have one or both of these accounts and they’re perfect for sharing news of your organisation, events your hosting or links to content your audience will love.
Pinterest and Instagram are heavily image based but equally as powerful. Use Pinterest to bolster your organisation’s identity and personality. Share behind the scenes photos and videos which link back to your website and give people a feel for what you have to offer.
You can also get existing members involved too by featuring a member of the week or allowing them to contribute to your Pinterest boards.
What do you think? What ways have you attracted new members ? What’s worked or hasn’t worked for you? We’d love to hear in the comments below?