Membership Engagement: Why is it important and how can you increase it?

by Jonel Thames Leake, CPCU, ASLI, AAI, CPIW, DAE

Membership engagement is a term that we hear all the time in our association. It is considered so important that we have a task force dedicated to it. Have you ever wondered why?

First of all, what is membership engagement? I found a definition that describes it as “the ongoing interaction between members and an organization”. This definition may cause you to sit back and think that you have no responsibility for membership engagement. That isn’t true. In the International Association of Insurance Professionals, who is the organization? Is it the executive board? Is it the executive director and other staff members? Is it the regional leaders? Is it the local officers? The answer is yes! In fact, every member of IAIP can be defined as the organization. So, membership engagement is everyone’s responsibility.

How do we increase membership engagement? I don’t have all the answers, but here are some tried and true suggestions.

  1. Communicate with the members. Send bulk emails, post on social media, send personal notes and cards – and pick up the phone and call. Inform members of opportunities for participation. Consider a local or council newsletter to keep members in the know.
  2. Schedule events. This has been very challenging due to Covid, but events of any type are critical. Once you schedule the event, it is very important to publicize it. Don’t just send one invitation. Follow up is important!
  3. Encourage members to participate in offerings like the Special Interest Communities, CLP classes and Town Halls. Encourage members to apply for scholarships or grants. Encourage members to volunteer or apply to serve at the international level.
  4. Offer content that is interesting to your group while making sure that you aren’t excluding members. Sometimes the smallest change can make something inclusive for all.
  5. Add activities that build community in your group. That could be a local association working together at a food bank or walk-a-thon or offering a class or study group.

Why is this important? Engaged members are more likely to renew their membership and help recruit additional members. Engaged members are more likely to purchase goods and services from IAIP and they are more likely to participate in events at all levels. They are more like to accept leadership positions or volunteer for the association.

It you are an association leader at any level, look at what you are doing and make sure that you are offering opportunities to your members that will increase their engagement. If you are a member, offer to help your elected leader or participate in what is offered.

By working together, we can make IAIP soar into the future!

by Jonel Thames Leake, CPCU, ASLI, AAI, CPIW, DAE

Jonel is a long-term IAIP member who has taken advantage of opportunities at every level of IAIP. She is currently serving as the Region I Vice President.

Join us Wednesday, March 23 at 1:00 PM ET for the March Town Hall to experience a compelling conversation about IAIP Membership: Engagement, Recruitment and Retention. Learn all about the benefits (the old and the new!) available to you as a member of IAIP. What can you do to help retain and engage our members? And what can you do to recruit new members to propel our association forward? Find out all this and more! If you are a leader in the IAIP community, you don’t want to miss this event.


2 thoughts on “Membership Engagement: Why is it important and how can you increase it?

  1. Great article! Any engagement suggestions for those who are still remote and cannot yet meet in person or participate in any community building events?


  2. Meetings can be held virtually and , if advertised, can attract attendees beyond your geographic area! The same goes for speakers as they can be outside your area as well.

    You can also have “fun” meetings virtually. Play trivia or bingo or learn to make a new mixed drink.

Comments are closed.

Share This