Thu, 02/11/2010 – 21:17 | by Aren Cambre
The LPENA bylaws define the membership period to be May 1 through April 30, so all memberships reset May 1 of each year. This was done to simplify bookkeeping.
It also allows LPENA to run a focused membership campaign. This campaign has two goals:
- Encourage timely renewal.
- Maximize member households.
Memberships are critical to LPENA as the vast majority of funds come from dues.
This suggested membership campaign both seeks to minimize effort and focus effort on people who are not currently members.
The a membership campaign has three phases that work with four groups of households:
- Yes: Will gladly join and do it online.
- Check: Will gladly join but prefer not to use the web renewal.
- Maybes: May join with coaxing.
- No way: Will not join.
Phase 1: online renewals
This phase targets the Yes group. The other phases are much more labor intensive, so the more you can get to participate here, the easier the rest of the campaign will be.
Online renewals are the simplest way to get people to sign up. An email to the announcements list may be sufficient to get a good deal of people to sign up.
Phase 2: current members
In the next phase, you target the Check group with a simplified solicitation. Placing a brief note, membership form, and stamped envelope on their door may be sufficient.
Phase 3: nonmembers
The third phase is the most difficult. It targets people who are not currently members. At this point, you’re probably down to Maybes and No ways.
Personal visits may be able to convert many Maybes to members. This worked well in the 2007 campaign: everyone who wasn’t currently a member received a personal visit where a volunteer dropped off a brief note, membership form, and stamped envelope.
Volunteers should be encouraged to make a few attempts at each house before just leaving the materials. Personal contact is a critical part of encouraging memberships.
The membership campaign should get the help of the block captain network, all board members, and any other willing volunteers. Each volunteer should help distribute materials in phases 2 and 3.
Each board member should be assigned significantly more of a load than the average block captian or volunteer, although this shouldn’t be seen as a participation ceiling for willing block captains or volunteers.
Block captains generally should be given houses on their own block or nearby.
As mentioned above, each household that does not renew online should receive a brief note welcoming them to membership, a membership form, and a stamped envelope.
Make sure the note is appropriate to the audience. A note for nonmembers (phase 3) may have different things than a note to currnet members (note 2).
Also realize that the note is a marketing opportunity. It should explain what the association does and explain that membership dues are the association’s primary income.
The treasurer generally receives notifications of online memberships and receives all checks. Work closely with the treasurer to monitor results.
Keep in mind that supporting the membership campaign is among the most challenging tasks for the treasurer.
Recordkeeping and data
Plan do do enough recordkeeping to keep tabs on who’s reached in each phase.
If any other LPENA records need updating, the membership campaign is a great time to do it.