Boy, do we hate being pressured!
Telemarketers are trained to add pressure until you give in. Realtors love to add just a bit more pressure when they say “oh, by the way, we are getting an offer on this property this afternoon.” High-pressure TV ads scream, “save big for one day only!!!”
It must work because they keep doing it. Actually, I think these tactics used to work, but they are far less effective now. Some marketers have not yet caught on to the cultural transition, so they keep yelling louder.
Most of my friends no longer answer the phone when they do not recognize the number. We cringe when confronted with high-pressure sales tactics. We figure out ways to cut advertising out of our media diets altogether.
Why do we hate being pressured? Because being pressured feels like a trick. Tricks inspire distrust. So high-pressure tactics are not so great in our everyday lives, and these tactics are also not so great for members when used by associations. Distrust does not foster belonging. Not belonging is antithetical to being a member. If anything, we want members to feel belonging.
I bet that most associations do not pressure prospective members and members. In fact, associations are usually passive to a fault. However, there are some weak points at which we can pressure members too much:
- While trying to meet member acquisition goals, we can accidentally use high-pressure tactics. Deborah Rodney shares her story on AssociationSuccess.
- Chapter leaders desperate for help can also apply too much pressure to members they hope will become volunteers.
- In search of more member engagement, we force engagement with apps, affinity programs and more.
Members tell me they want to pick their level of engagement.
Not to little and not too much.