Make New Members Feel Welcome

Rules of Engagement Associations Now Spring 2020 Issue By: Tim Ebner

A few simple steps can tell new members, “We’re glad you’re here.” Don’t miss the chance to help them connect with your staff and community from day one.

A few simple steps can make new members feel welcome Allison Klein, senior vice president of strategic engagement at the American Road and Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA), is always on the hunt for light-touch engagements that roll out the welcome mat for new members.

“Direct engagement is the real key,” she says. “It’s about reaching that new member and trying to showcase their talents and expertise too.” Here are three ways ARTBA welcomes new members:

1. Social media shoutout. Using the ARTBA Twitter account, Klein and her team will mention or tag a new member company in a tweet. “Twitter is definitely where we see the most activity and visibility for our members,” she says. “It’s a small but extra-special way to give some early recognition fast.”

2. Newsletter and magazine spotlights. ARTBA uses its newsletter, Newsline, to draw attention to new members. “That includes more detailed contact information, as well as a logo and link to the [member’s] website,” Klein says. “We also devote an entire page of the magazine to all those who recently joined.”

3. Staff introduction and outreach. New members quickly get introduced to ARTBA’s staff team too. “That’s more of an internal process where everyone on staff receives an email introduction, then they can reach out to the new member directly,” Klein says. “While new-member promotion is great, I think it’s direct engagement, including picking up a phone to talk [with] and listen to a member, that really matters.” 

Tim Ebner

Tim Ebner is communications director and press secretary at the American Forest & Paper Association in Washington, DC. He is a member of ASAE’s Communication Professionals Advisory Council and a former Associations Now senior editor.