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					Recruiting and Retaining Members
Southeast Region Leadership Meeting July 2004

Why do you join an association?

What’s the VALUE ??
• Save organization money • Current information for decision-making • Maximize impact of RIM Make an impact through information and education!

What are the key issues for RIM professionals?

MOST CRITICAL ISSUES

The impact of technology is driving the RIM industry today, including conversion to electronic records; data retention, storage and recovery; and software implementation. Despite the demands of technological innovation, many employers don’t provide enough support to records management.
28% 18% NET RETENTION, STORAGE, RECOVERY Retention scheduling Records/information storage 15% 9% 5%

NET ERM Electronic records management Converting from paper to electronic

information
Electronic records control/ Controlling electronic information Time to input data in electronic management systems NET SUPPORT FOR RIM Lack of support for records management Gaining respect/recognition for profession Financial resources/funding/ Time budgets Employer buy-in Personal development

5%
5% 1% 26% 10% 8% 7% 2% 1%

Disaster recovery/ Emergency preparedness
Movement of information NET SOFTWARE, OTHER TECH. Implementation of new programs/software/technology Emerging technologies Effective records management software NET EFFICIENCY/TIMELINESS NET INDUSTRY STANDARDS NET GOV'T REGULATIONS NET OTHER

3%
1% 10% 4% 4% 2% 7% 6% 3% 23%

Q12.

What are the one or two most critical issues you face in your position today with respect to records and information management?

INTEREST IN EDUCATION

Members show the most interest in technology and its risks, including ERM, information protection and legal issues. Industry standards and legislation also draw strong, widespread interest.

Q21. Document management systems Q22. Electronic records management Q23. Standards and best practices Q24. Records centers/archives management Q25. Information protection (security, digital preservation, disaster recovery, vital records) Q26. Legal consideration, records retention Q27. Privacy Q28. Impact of legislation on records management (e.g., HIPAA, corporate accountability)

56% 75% 58% 37% 59% 65% 43% 55%
High Moderate

34%

10% 21% 4%

35% 41% 35% 29% 42% 35%
Low

7% 22% 7% 6% 14% 10%

(Continued)

Q21-28. Please indicate your level of interest in pursuing ARMA educational offerings in each of the following topics as either high, moderate or low interest.

PREFERRED CHANNELS

Most members like to receive education at local seminars; online courses and seminars are also gaining widespread acceptance. Thus, localized and Internet distribution top the agenda for supplementing education at the annual conference.

Educational seminars in your area

86%

Online Courses

62%

68% in Canada, 82% International

Annual Conferences

48%

Internet Seminars

40%

53% International

Video Conferences

19%

Audio Tapes

15%

Teleconferences 11%

Q30.

What are your preferred delivery method(s) for future educational sessions?

Keys to effective membership recruitment

Keys to effective recruitment

 Personalize the message  Customize the approach  Empathize with the prospect

Understanding your audience
• What’s their work situation? • What professional challenges do they face? • What knowledge or education do they need? • How has ARMA helped you in those areas?

Understanding your audience
• Prospects want to know if you know who they are and what they face every day. – This is how you personalize. • Prospects need to know that ARMA knows what they do for a living. This is customizing • Prospects must believe that ARMA can help them do their job more effectively. This is how we empathize.

Know ARMA’s programs
• Bi-monthly journal • Books, videos • Online seminars • Chapter seminars • Annual conference • Web-based resources • Standards • Leg/Reg info

The membership recruitment and retention plan

Have a plan
• Membership function - is to try to recruit and retain as many members as possible. • Membership goals and the strategies used to accomplish them should be part of a structured plan of action. • Think of all points of entry and ways to reach prospects • Reach outside the box to gain members

Member Recruitment Plans
• Goals / Objectives / Assumptions • Measurement criteria • Implementation strategies • Budget • Evaluate / Re-tool • Celebrate accomplishments!

The membership recruitment and retention plan
• Lessons Learned:
– The membership plan will help keep your membership efforts focused. – A well thought out plan will help limited resources to be used in the most productive way. – Plus it helps define success and gets the board and members committed to accomplishing the objectives and being successful as a team.

The membership plan: Evaluate / Re-tool / Celebrate
• WWW / WNI • Improve the program • Keep at it! • Recognize the work of all involved

Membership
• Prospects • Referrals • New Members • Reinstatements • Retention

Prospects

How do we get people to stay?
• Listen to / meet expectations • Introduce them to others • Engage them in meaningful activity
– Based on their needs – Based on their skills – Achievable, non-threatening

• Give recognition for contributions

Recruitment Tips: Greater Columbus Chapter
• • • • • • • Add a personal touch Welcome members and guests upon arrival Introduce members to members / guests Ensure no one feels excluded Develop a camaraderie of fellowship Entice members and guests to come back Follow-up / Follow-up / Follow-up !

Prospects
• Tailor your message to your audience A good message aimed at the wrong audience is about as effective as giving a great speech to an audience that doesn’t speak your language.

Physical vs. virtual participation: Both have value!
• Chapter meetings • Chapter seminars • Annual Conference • Information Management Journal • Chapter newsletters • Online resources • Leg/reg updates • Books

Referrals

Referrals
• Referrals are nonmembers who participate in the organization’s programs, unsolicited inquiries, former members, and purchased lists. • Can be brought to the chapter through your members

Referrals
How to have a referral program through your chapter members– send a referral card to members and asking them to send back the names of prospective members – Articles in chapter newsletter with a reply card or a phone number to call for more information, – Have referral forms available meetings

Reinstatements

Reinstatements
• Reinstatements are former members • ARMA provides this list to the chapters in the Chapter Connection • We can’t approach former members the same way we do first time prospects. • First, know when and why they left.

Reinstatements
• Your message is “what’s new?” Tell them what has happened since they left the organization that makes it meaningful to them to join again right now. • Make it clear that you know that they use to be members and that there is a reason for them to come back at this particular time.

Membership retention
Four Step Plan

Membership Retention
What we know: • It costs more to get a new member • First and second year members are less likely to renew – if they initially do not see the value

Four step program for retention
Step One – Focus on new members • Try to identify why they are joining reinforce those benefits

• Establish a system of new member orientation
• Allow new members to attend their first meeting free…

Four step program for retention
Step two: Try to get everyone involved in an activity • individuals and companies involved are less likely to drop out - they get more of a return on their investment • Not necessarily a leadership position - it can be participation in activities • Track their involvement

Four step program for retention
Step three: Give Some Form of Recognition to those Who Do Get Involved • Every time someone gets involved on all levels, including programs and meetings, someone needs to say “thank you”

Four step program for retention
• Step four: Develop an Effective Renewal Invoicing Process • ARMA makes six contacts with the member before marking their record inactive. One of the six contacts is a telephone call and another is a hard copy invoice in the mail.

Overcoming objections

Overcoming objections
• Overcoming objections effectively is a skill that all of us need to master if we are going to really maximize our membership efforts. • The most important thing when overcoming objections is to listen carefully before responding. • It is natural for recruiters to become defensive when someone presents their objection.

Overcoming Objections
There is one technique that can be used to overcome virtually any objection Feel-Felt-Found method

Feel-Felt-Found
When prospects say that they think the membership is too expensive or that they don’t have time to participate, the person asking them too join simply says:
“I know how you feel, I felt the same way myself, but I found that membership really was a great investment” *83

Communications and Outreach

Communications
Letters • Personalize all letters including earned designations • Match the level of formality with the level of who is receiving the letter with the level of who is sending the letter. • Determine if it is appropriate to use first or last names. Depends on the culture of the organization.

Telemarketing

Telemarketing
• Volunteers placing membership calls is better than HQ staff or a telemarketer • Can be more effective than direct mail because of the direct interaction • Must start with a list of good, qualified prospects • Have an effective script...

Telemarketing
• Other uses of telemarketing
– follow up tool with a mailing – can be used as invitations to meetings – to gain valuable information if the prospect does not join. – Should not be perceived as a hard-sell technique

Media
• Public Service Announcements (PSAs) promote services of general interest to a wide audience of viewers or listeners • Shred day or How to organize your personal files and records • Short lengths of air time radio, T.V. and newspaper • Call public affairs at station – or editor of paper

Media
• Remember that your message has to be brief and to the point. • Give the listener an address to write or a number to call for more information • Or provide Web site for more information.

Newspaper

Newspaper
• Write letters to the editor • Send chapter events to the business journal calendar of events • Write articles - think about who is reading it and how/who it impacts on a business level. • Focus on the discipline of the profession as an important part of doing business

Newspaper
• Send press releases before and after an event • After the event - focus on what was done, the benefits and results • Needs to be for a good cause such as improvement of some sort. • Invite the media out but have someone who can talk about it.

Radio

Radio
• Don’t forget about Radio - send releases to the Public Affairs Director • “Look at it as the good side of business”, it’s not about ARMA and who we are, it’s about the ability to compete or serve in community business at its best. • Don’t sell your name, sell the message

Trade show and information booths

Trade shows and information booths
• Most industry associations, chambers of commerce and professional societies have several opportunities throughout the year. • Booths can help you qualify your prospects, listen and talk to them. • Make notes on business cards that you collect and follow up with a personalized letter or call...

Trade shows and information booths
• An expensive display is not needed • samples of every promotional piece applications, magazines, newsletters • have a back drop or banner indicating who we are. • Send an advanced mailing to their prospective attendee list to encourage people to come by the booth...

Trade shows and information booths
• Order promotional materials and chapter display from ARMA HQ • Forms are in the Chapter Connection • Reserve booth at least four weeks in advance • Materials allow 10 days

Faxing

Faxing
• Has some appeal because it is more important than mailing. • New rule – don’t fax to anyone that is not affiliated with you. Give them a way to opt out of receiving another fax. • Develop a piece specifically for fax machines, no photos or colors, easy to respond and easy to read

Member get a member campaign

Member-get-a-member
• The American Society of Association Executives found in a study that memberto-member recruiting was found to be the most effective way of getting people to join organizations...

Member-get-a-member
• Train volunteer recruiters how to recruit:
– The goal is not to make sales people out of them but simply to give them confidence to recruit. – Educate them in a professional way on reasons to join – Group training works best – Talk about challenges they are going to face and how they can overcome the challenges...

Membership campaigns
• Identify a volunteer leader as a head of the campaign because it gives added credibility asking for support from others • Adequately plan all activities surrounding the campaign and set a time frame for the campaign • Have clearly defined goals and objectives - challenging yet achievable

Membership campaigns
• Members will make many contacts with people who do not join - have a follow-up system that enables someone to call on these prospects again • If the member joins after the follow up they should be counted as part of the campaign

Wrap Up
• Features vs. benefits • Keys for recruiting • Have a plan • Prospects, referrals, new members, reinstatements and renewals • Overcoming objections • Communications and Outreach • Membership campaigns

Member Services
Anita Willis Director of Member Services ARMA International awillis@arma.org 888-299-4319