Make the Most of Your Member Communication
Here at The Campaign Workshop, we do a fair amount of member communication. Whether it be for labor unions or advocacy organizations, there are some basic do’s and don’ts we try to follow. Here are some tips:
- DO figure out what your members care about. When we talk about member communication, we suggest seeing it as a conversation, not one direction. Take polls, do open ended surveys where members can give their answers in their own words.
- DO always include a way to engage with your organization—even on announcements and political direct mail. While you are informing your members of something, you also want to give those who want more information or a way to get more involved an opportunity to easily get it. Whether it’s a number to text, or a website, give the handful who want more the chance to get it.
- DON’T assume your membership is as well versed in something as you. For example, you can assume the members of your environmental group have heard of fracking, but that doesn’t mean they understand precise chemical compounds involved. If you get too deep in the weeds or are too wonky, you will put your members off.
- DON’T only communicate with members when you want something. Whether it’s money or votes, some organizations can fall victim cutting their lists into such distinct segments that the only time some folks are communicated with is when the full list is mailed/emailed/called, whatever. And when are those times? Exactly. Make sure you are really engaging with every segment of your list.
Finding the right way to connect with your membership is not easy and takes time. If you get it right the benefit to your organization can be huge. With engaged membership the sky is the limit.
What are some other member communication do’s and don’ts you’ve learned?