If your job is to attract new members, grow member engagement and retain members then your job is a big one. More than advertising or communications you need to tell a story if you are to be successful. It is hard to tell the story when you don’t have a part to play in creating the story. That is why marketers need to have a seat at the table during strategic and innovation discussions as well as brand discussions.
I take a broad view of marketing. Marketing is everything that is member facing. For marketing to work everything, and everyone that touches your members needs to tell the same story. Your story is not just about what you say, your story is also baked into your products, events, service and the way you operate.
Backcountry.com couldn’t deliver on their great customer service promise, they call it shopping with a Gearhead, if the customer service staff were not also outdoor enthusiasts who actually used all this gear. Recruitment and customer service are part of their marketing.
More original programing by Netflix indicates that this model is working for them – and also offers them a marketing story to hang their hat on. A story that competitors can’t easily replicate. Innovation and content development are part of their marketing.
No one produces conferences like TED. Imagine charging attendees somewhere between $4,000 – $6,000 and then giving all the content away for free? Of course they do and it is wildly successful. Organizational strategy, content development and web strategy are part of their marketing.
Too often organizations get caught thinking that marketing is synonymous with advertising. With goals like yours – attracting members, growing engagement and retaining members you need many more tools than just advertising.
- Member services is much larger than the member services team
- What are your members hungry for?
- Does your brand connect with your members?