In the UK, a quarter of people expect their finances to worsen in the first few months of this year. Most of your members will have had “save money and cut back on expenses” as their New Years Resolution. So, it’s imperative for you to show them why they should keep paying your membership fees.
An effective way of proving to your members that the content you provide is useful and relevant for them, is by signposting them to your consistently updated website.
But what should be on a membership website? That’s what the below article’s all about. Below, we list 4 content ideas for a membership website. So if you’re a website admin or marketing manager for a membership organisation, you should be reading!
1. Online Courses
Online courses are commonly found on membership websites. They’re especially suitable if you want to provide multiple topics in an organised manner.
Kajabi points out that such courses, which require your members to pay a fee to the course providers or instructors, can be another revenue stream for your business. However, if you’re trying to provide more free content so members aren’t put off by extra costs, you won’t want to put your learning content behind a paywall at this stage. Instead, you might wish to prove a free-to-access knowledge library, as described below:
2. Knowledge Library
Your members are expecting value in terms of learning. They’ll want to know that they’re paying for something that’s worth continuing to pay for their membership, and that’ll better them professionally and/or personally.
A knowledge library of informative videos can be great for this. We’ve seen some knowledge libraries on membership organisation websites that just contain ebooks and articles, but we’ve found that it’s quite unreasonable to expect members to read through these. We establish here why it’s best to use videos in such a knowledge base. We’ve seen Zooms/webinars used, but these cannot be high quality. Therefore, they aren’t up to the high standard that your members will be looking for.
CPD Online can produce high quality, bespoke videos of your training events, specifically for a training library. To hire us to record training videos for you, email firstname.lastname@example.org today.
Not convinced that you’ll need such services? Membership Geeks state that an archive of live events is necessary for a membership site. This is because it can build a back catalogue of training materials for new members, which increases your membership’s value. Furthermore, it allows your current members to not lose out on your knowledge content if your events take place at a time they can’t attend. To increase value further, Membership Geeks adds that you could offer exclusive downloads for them (which could be videos, software, resources or tools) which they can’t access elsewhere without paying a premium.
In terms of other resources or downloads, you could also provide worksheets, templates or exercises for your members. This is because people have likely joined your membership offering as a way of getting closer to their goals. For instance, they may expect that the knowledge and connections gained from being in your community will help them advance in the industry. Worksheets can allow them to put what they’ve learnt into practice. Additionally, they can help them record how the knowledge they’ve displayed is getting them closer to reach their goals.
Members will be able to look back on these and see how being a member of your association has benefitted them on their professional mission. This’ll keep them motivated, so they don’t “give up” on this mission by leaving your organisation.
3. Member News
Members want to feel a part of an active community, and that they’re not just sending money one-sided to a company. So, keep them in the loop by uploading to your site new membership offerings, what’s going on in your industry, the most relevant current discussions in your industry, and potentially also a spotlight section for specific members who’ve made certain achievements.
Content that details the day-to-day events of your members can go a long way in engaging members to get involved in such activities, and keeping your site active. You could put these on your site, or potentially upload them publicly if you’d like non-members to see what kind of activities they could get involved in if they became a member of your association.
(If you want any of the above membership news contents in a video format, CPD Online could produce them for you. Email us at email@example.com to ask us for a quote for this service.)
4. A Community Forum
Continuing with the theme of keeping a sense of community, a community forum can be a great tool to have on your membership website. Prospective members can view posts by other people who are on a similar career path to them, which may make them likelier to stay on their current career path and not believe it to be worth leaving the industry – and your industry organisation. They’ll look at their peers documenting career steps they’ve achieved in your organisation, and see them as role models. A stronger sense of community can also give your members roots in your organisation, so they have more people tying them to it and don’t want to leave.
If you don’t want this on your website, or don’t have space for it, AccessAlly points out that you could alternatively have a private Facebook group. Access to this more casual group – which may also allow your members to chat and network – can be yet another perk of your membership.
Which of the above features would fit best on your membership website? If you’re still undecided on which would resonate with your members the most and actively improve retention, why don’t you ask your members what they want to see?