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8 proven strategies to grow your Association’s Membership through Digital Marketing

As a membership executive with two decades of experience, I've learned a thing or two about growing membership and engagement through digital marketing. And today, I'm going to share some tips on how to use these platforms to build engagement with new and potential members.

Tip 1: Have a plan in place that aligns with your overall business and marketing strategy. You need to know what you are posting, when, where, why and how it will help your association achieve its goals and objectives.

Tip 2: Know your members like you know the back of your hand. Understand their interests, needs, and pain points, and create content that speaks to them. Pick the platforms that work best for you and your members, and focus your efforts there. It's like cleaning out your closet: you don't need 17 different pairs of jeans when you only wear one (shoes are a different story).

Tip 3: Get personal with your members. Digital marketing provides the opportunity to speak directly to your members and showcase them! People love seeing their names and faces on social media, so why not highlight some of your most engaged members? Give them a shoutout and let them know how much you appreciate their involvement.

Tip 4: Tag your members (and sponsors and stakeholders and venues) in social media posts. When you create social media posts about your association's events or activities, make sure to tag everyone who is involved. This will not only increase reach across their networks, encourage engagement, and create a sense of community among your members.

Tip 5: The rule of thirds is your friend. The Rule of Thirds helps to divide your content marketing into categories that will grow your audience and engagement and then provide the base to promote your products and services. Divide your content evenly into three categories:

  • Promotion of your association’s products and benefits

  • Educational information, tips, thought leadership articles, and relevant insights for members

  • Entertaining, photos of events, memes, and content engaging with the membership base.

This is one I see missed all the time, and an important one to get right.

Tip 6: Repurpose your content like a champion. Turn your blog post into a podcast, your webinar into a LinkedIn thought-piece, and your media release into an infographic. The possibilities are endless and provide you with consistent, but varied content.

Tip 7: Leverage user-generated content. Word of mouth is a powerful tool, and your members are your best advocates! Encourage them to share their experiences with your association and use that content to promote your association to a wider audience.

Tip 8: Outsource if you need to. We all know running a membership association is hard with little money and fewer resources, so utilising a team like can help you achieve amazing engagement with the members, whilst freeing your team up to provide the services and benefits members need from you.

So, there you have it... Follow these tips and you'll be on your way to growing your association's membership and engagement faster than you can say "hashtag blessed".

Kerrin Simmonds 10202026 (Disclaimer: This content is for the sole purpose of teaching and learning at Edith Cowan University).


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