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What is Member Value and Why is it So Important to Membership Organisations

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Membership organisations are one of the many groups that need to adapt and evolve by listening to their audience’s needs. Membership organisations also need to undergo digital transformation, and create new ways to engage and interact with the next generation. In short, they need to stay relevant to truly succeed in today’s customer-centric climate.

Customer (or member) centricity has been a growing area for both membership organisations and companies over the last few years, the basic principle is focusing your goals and your efforts on your customers and putting their needs ahead of yours; a polar opposite to the traditional business-centric methods which put business need ahead of customer satisfaction.

The Founder of The MemberWise Network Richard Gott sums it up perfectly, “[we’re] waking up to the fact that future long-term member value and growth requires a deeper focus on online membership experience and engagement”.

So, what is member value?

Member Value

Member value is the benefit that your members receive from you, it can actually be broken down into two different definitions, the perceived member value and the actual member value.

Perceived member value is what your members feel they receive from you, be that their access to services or benefits of their membership and ability to participate. This can be quite different to the actual member value as some of your members may be unaware of the benefits and services you can provide to them.

Actual member value is the value your member actually receives from their membership, this can be a range of things from CPD, to networking, to being part of your community, to discounts, to career development or recognition. Your membership benefits should be articulately communicated so your members know exactly what their membership gives them making them fully appreciate what you provide.

With clear membership benefits communicated or listed on your site you are able to dissolve the disconnect between the two types of member value.

Member value will continue to be a growing area and will evolve from a desirable trait to a necessary one. If member value is not addressed within your organisation it will have long term effects on recruitment, retention, growth, participation and engagement.

So, if this area is so critical to membership organisations why hasn’t it been optimised yet, along with member engagement? It is normally because membership organisations are too focused on new members that they forget to look after their current members, but as most business experts will tell you, new member acquisition is significantly more costly than retention.

Due to the current membership climate it is more important than ever for membership organisations to evolve, adapt and develop their offering and communicate with their members with member value being a cornerstone in this transition.

If you are looking for more in depth information around membership organisations, member value and working towards future proofing some outdated processes, check out our free ebook on - The Importance of Engagement for Your Membership Organisations.


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