Organizations may be experiencing the summer content slump right now. It happens to the best of us—better weather, more opportunities for vacation time and a general surge in lethargic thinking. But why take content creation so seriously this time of year? Applying alternative methods of engaging with members can easily bring the great content right to your organization.
Let’s not burden ourselves with a long to-do list—here are the top three engagement tips for grabbing great member content (user-generated and user-demanded).
Talk to brand new members
Onboarding new members is a critical step for organizations, and often one that is easily missed. There are processes you may already have in place that have stood the test of time, like satisfaction surveys or new member discounts. Elicit fresh new opinions from people who are arguably your most honest and transparent (with the reasons for membership still fresh in their minds).
Many membership departments are shifting to marketing automation, which not only allows them to personalize interactions with members but also reduces excess effort for onboarding. Reach out using inaction and recognition tactics to garner members’ opinions, advice and thoughts on what they want for content. Encourage them to complete small tasks through an automated email to get their attention. Or reward members with digital ribbons or hand-written thank you notes to keep their interest piqued.
Give members the roles and titles they crave (and deserve)
Better communication will result in improved engagement and more usable content. Members and association staff alike are already integral parts to an important group—the words and titles used will either reinforce engaging behavior or push away the members who are more timid and searching for answers.
Think about it—Disney calls its staff cast members and Imagineers; Apple refers to its in-store support as geniuses. Be thoughtful about how you address and interact with your members, and give them the due diligence they deserve for participation and collaboration.
Audit your current content
Look at the content you’ve been creating and compare it to the things members have been searching for. Are you producing items that help address key questions? What are the holes to close in the coming months? What content attracts the most engagement? If you haven’t already, start building out your own content calendar.
This extends to events and programming, which can end up providing endless engagement and content creation opportunities. Have you done enough? Which programs and events garnered the most attendees or feedback? Are there events that members have requested? Don’t just look at attendance – look at whether the programming sparked conversations or created connections among members.
Harness activity that’s already taking place online with your members—or better yet, start some casual conversations now, while members’ workloads aren’t as burdensome—and provide a trustworthy space for them to speak their minds and crowd-source useful content. Opinions, discussions, blogs and more will become the most useful and popular collateral, but also the preferred content for your members to share. What resources and programs from your organization are bringing your members voices together, and where do you see the need to improve?