Trends & Opportunities 2015: Member Engagement

February 26, 2015 Mariel Moore

Member Engagement

2 out of 3 respondents share that their organizations have staff with full-time responsibility for increasing engagement for members, program participants, donors, and/or volunteers.

Organizations seem to be split on the topic of engagement. Many report that they are ramping up the staffing in the areas of member-engagement while others report that engagement is a shared responsibility for everyone within the organization. Still, others comment that their increased focus on full-time engagement is to lay the groundwork for fund development.

One things most organizations agree on? Engagement deserves increased focus. Specifically, survey respondents report:

“We are starting [engagement efforts] at one branch and hope to expand it in the future.”

“The role of the Member Specialist  is to connect with new members to begin the engagement process. We also have engagement teams at each center.”

“We have multiple directors and managers that have responsibility for membership engagement, program participation, donors, and volunteers. But, there is no one person with full time responsibility.”

“We have a full time Director of Relationships, but she has additional responsibilities. We have a part-time staff member who spends 100% of her time in engagement.”

“We have developed a Marketing/Membership committee with staff from each branch (including full-time staff and directors). We meet once a month to discuss engagement of members, program participants, donors, and volunteers. This has been an extensive endeavor that has been very positive for us.”

Millennial Engagement

Technology is one way to get members (literally) connected to your mission. Take millennials for example (those age 22-37 in 2015). According to the 2013 Millennial Impact Report, most nonprofits already know the basic pieces they should put in place to capture millennials:

  • Have an up-to-date, well-designed website
  • Make your website mobile friendly
  • Be present on social media
  • Follow up with relevant, easy-to-read emails

While studies show that millennials often prefer debit over credit, Daxko’s overall membership data doesn’t match this trend. Daxko Operations processed nearly $75 million in credit card payments in 2014. The number of credit card payments is climbing and already more than half of all payments processed in Daxko Operations are made by credit card. Whether paying via credit or debit, millennials  enjoy the ease and convenience of self-service tools, so make sure your website can facilitate easy digital payments. (US News, “Why Millennials Don’t Like Credit Cards,” Nov. 2014)

About Trends & Opportunities

Daxko conducts the Trends & Opportunities survey annually to gather insights on nonprofits and the members they serve. This year’s study was fielded in December 2014 via email and included YMCAs, JCCs, Boys and Girls Clubs and other community centers. We had more than 350 member-based nonprofit professionals respond to this survey representing 314 unique associations.

About the Author

Mariel Moore

Mariel is Daxko's Digital Content Manager which means she spends a lot of her time editing this blog and this website. In her free time she likes falling sporadically in and out of love with various workout trends and hanging out with her family.

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