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Membership Retention and Growth Strategies – Unlocking Success

In this article, we discuss the importance of Membership Retention, how you can grow your membership, and the strategies you can use.

If you are an organisation that has a membership at its heart with a client base to retain and grow, then membership strategies to fully engage with members must be high on your agenda.

While acquiring new members is essential, it’s equally important to focus on retaining and satisfying your current members for long-term success, and we will explore 8 effective strategies to boost membership retention and growth.

By implementing these strategies, your organisation can build a loyal community and achieve sustainable growth, which not only supports you, but enables your membership to continue benefiting from all you have on offer.

  1. Know your industry
    Membership retention requires you to keep up to date with the latest developments and be the source of this information for your members. They will value their membership, knowing you provide the information they need.

For one of our clients at Compleat, we produce a quarterly newsletter on their behalf. The newsletter is a way for our client to share relevant, topical, and valuable information about the membership. The newsletter is sent directly to the members inbox, with topics of interest to its recipients. This form of engagement helps with retention of the membership and provides measurable results on how engaged the members are.

  1. Know your members
    Acknowledge that each member is unique and has specific interests and preferences. This recognition will enhance their overall experience. Being able to gather data and analytics is vital in membership retention, so you can segment your members, and talk to them about what is most important to their individual needs. By doing this, you’ll see your engagement levels rise and attrition levels decrease.

As a membership management organisation, we work on behalf of our clients to ensure they maintain and enhance their membership numbers, and one of the ways we get to know members and tailor the communications to them is to collect the right data from the get-go.

This is quite simple to do – simply ask them on joining (or even retrospectively if you haven’t already) what they want to hear about, providing a tick list for them to choose. All good CRM systems will allow this.

  1. Analyse the data even more

Knowledge is power, as they say. Now you have gathered your survey data, analyse the results and look for common themes and insights.

Address known member pain points and refine your offerings. A data-driven approach will enable you to make informed decisions and continually improve your membership offering and membership retention.

One of our longest standing clients has used this approach from the off and has found that it has strengthened their profile, ultimately retaining its members by continuously reviewing its objectives and membership offering.

  1. Phone your members
    Call new members and welcome them – it goes a long way!

Speaking to someone directly over the phone creates a human connection that cannot be replicated through digital communication. It demonstrates that your organisation values them as an individual and not just as a number.

As an organisation that runs on providing good customer service, resulting in receiving client membership success, this strategy really does work.

  1. Incentives and rewards
    Do you offer exclusive membership discounts, early access or special perks to show your gratitude for their loyalty?

By providing tangible benefits, you can create a win-win situation, encourage both membership retention and organisation growth. Non-members that also see these perks are given yet another reason to join your membership.

Many of our clients use early access discounts as an incentive to get their members to register for an upcoming event and they will highlight this through their marketing to show non-members the member benefits they are missing out on.

  1. Provide value
    Assess the benefits and perks you provide and consider if they align with your members’ needs and expectations and adapt accordingly. Supply your members with valuable information, this will remind them of your unique advantages, exclusive content, or services available.

Experience shows that those members that are not engaged do not find value and are the ones that are more likely to cancel their membership, so consider their membership journey, and what you can bring to them each month. It doesn’t have to be a big event or an expensive mailing – but something that adds value (even an email with great information that educates is enough).

We recommend reviewing your content and what you are offering. Regular evaluation of member perspective helps with this and ensures members stay valued and they continue to feel the value in being a member of yours.

  1. Carry out customer/membership surveys
    As mentioned in the previous strategy, this will help you to understand in depth what your members value, what is working well, what is not working so well and what needs to be improved.

There are many strategies you can use and that we advise, including:
– Event feedback
– Customer service feedback
– Call-backs
– Automated questionnaires

Turn this data into insights, so you can understand their evolving needs.

  1. Regular and transparent communication
    A communications programme is huge in membership retention. Inform your members about upcoming events, new features, or any changes to the member benefits – and be clear on WHY they are relevant to the members, and what the outcomes are for them.

Provide frequent updates via newsletters, social media, email campaigns, or dedicated member portals. Open channels of communication will build trust.

At Compleat, we are responsible to producing social media content for our clients which allows the public to get a better sense of the associations with a view to joining and growing membership. This is a great way for a client to communicate their attributes as a membership organisation, increase online visibility and creates traffic to the organisation’s website.

Membership retention and growth are pivotal for the long-term success of any organisation. By focusing on providing exceptional value, fostering engagement and community, maintaining effective communication, offering incentives and rewards, you can create a thriving membership community.

Remember, the key lies in building relationships, understanding your members needs and constantly adapting to meet their expectations. Implement these strategies to unlock success and ensure a sustainable future for your membership programme.


We help businesses, Charities and Associations to grow their membership through the use of strategies.  By working with Compleat and utilising the skills and experience of our team you can create a thriving membership community.

If you are struggling with any of the above and would like to know more about how we can support you, call us on 01489 668333 or email

To hear what some of our clients have said about working with Compleat take a look at our Video Testimonials.


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