Membership renewals are a key component of an organization’s health. The more renewals you have, combined with the more new members you’re able to acquire, the more growth your organization will experience and the better you’ll be able to carry out your overall mission.
But as you know, renewals are tough. Getting people to take action - and pay for something - is a challenge, no matter what industry you’re in.
Just as there are best practices for membership renewals, there are also a few mistakes organizations should steer clear of. In fact, Marketing General Incorporated (MGI) just released a brand new Membership Renewal Guide, and based on years of their own in-depth research, they identified the two most common mistakes associations make in their renewal efforts.
Are you making either of these mistakes?
Mistake #1: Many associations include too few touches or notices in their renewal series
According to MGI’s Membership Renewal Guide, associations, on average, send two mailed renewal notices and four email renewal reminders. But typically, when associations increase their number of touch points, they see (almost immediately) higher renewal rates.
So how many renewal notices should you send? Again, based on years of research, MGI recommends seven or more renewal notices.
Mistake #2: Many associations don’t budget enough for an effective renewal program
Many associations don’t put enough money into the marketing needed to get members to renew. They often put more marketing into recruiting new members (which is important too, don’t get us wrong!). But MGI’s research shows that the average renewal rate for associations is 80 percent and the average member continues membership for five or more years. There are very few other marketing initiatives that result in that kind of lifetime value, so putting in the money to better push renewals really WILL pay off.
That said, MGI recommends that you spend (at least) whatever you spend to acquire one member (at your cheapest membership level) on the marketing efforts needed to retain one member as well.
There are TONS more membership renewal best practices in MGI’s Membership Renewal Guide, so I encourage you to check it out!
And for a few membership renewal best practices of our own (more tips regarding when to start outreach, how to handle lapsed members, etc.), check out our free guide below!