Joe Rominiecki is a contributing editor to Associations Now.
When one association added a small renewal date reminder box to its weekly email newsletter, it became the most clicked link in the email. Without sending yet another separate email, the association is seeing enhanced engagement and renewal rates.
The last-issue wrap—an extra cover on a magazine with a big, bold reminder that your subscription is about to expire—has long been a trusty renewal tool for publishers. But can the same idea work in an email?
In 2013, NAADAC, the Association for Addiction Professionals, made a series of sweeping changes to turn the tide of declining membership numbers. Two of those changes, an upgrade to its association management software (AMS) and a new email distribution platform that integrates with it, enabled NAADAC to make a small addition to its weekly newsletters that is having a big impact.
In every newsletter email, the template includes a membership status box, which is linked to each recipient's member record and displays his or her membership expiration date. For nonmembers, the box contains a link to join.
"That link is the number-one most clicked link on any emails that we send at any time. No matter what the topic is, most people are clicking on that box," says Misti Storie, director of training and professional development at NAADAC.
The key to the status box's success is the automated connection between the AMS and email platform. And clean, well-managed member data is just as important. As part of the upgrade, NAADAC worked to centralize its data management and connect scattered systems. "We wanted everything that was in our database to be as accurate as possible, and every piece of information that we had on all of our constituents could be housed in one location inside the database," Storie says.
Moreover, the status box accompanies news content that members look for each week. It's not a purely promotional email. "Just by sending our normal information out, this link is a constant membership recruitment tool that has increased our numbers exponentially without any extra staff time on our part," Storie says.
[This article was originally published in the Associations Now print edition, titled "Don't Forget!"]