Members can look engaged on paper. An active member, for example, might attend the conference, attend a handful of webinars, and purchase a few courses every year. This member must be engaged! Maybe. Maybe not. This particular member might need their CE credits and grudgingly registers each time to keep up with their certification.
Other members engage with their whole being, and they love their association community. Spending time with their professional family is like a homecoming. Interactions with their association colleagues fill their emotional tank.
It is possible to have people look engaged on paper because they tick all the boxes but feel no heartfelt engagement. At the same time, some members may not look engaged on paper, but they feel a deep sense of engagement. This type of engagement might be cerebral, heart-centered, or even engagement as an identity.
Most current strategies and tactics succeed in growing engagement on paper. The challenge then is to start cultivating engagement that is deeply felt.