Engaging members virtually is difficult, especially if the only way to reach them is online. However, just as digitalization has positively impacted almost every part of the organizations, it can also improve virtual member engagement efforts.
In this article, we will walk you through the top 10 member engagement strategies that can help your multi-tier organization build a long-lasting relationship with its members. We will also discuss technological challenges and how digitalization can help to overcome them.
Different chapters have different levels of digital maturity. While some may have a powerful member engagement platform with cutting-edge technology, others might even lack a well-designed website.
Driving digital transformation requires changing your perspective on technology and demanding innovation and growth from your operations. Ultimately, this results in optimal digital performance with improved outcomes, a better competitive position, and an enhanced customer experience.
Let’s take a look at the top three ways in which digitalization can help overcome technological challenges.
Having access to software makes it easier for organizations to automate their tasks and monitor the progress of their chapter's activities. Furthermore, the tech platforms facilitate training and support for chapter leaders and staff. Some of them integrate a chapter portal with an association management system or other software. As a result, reporting, payments, and data management become much more effective.
Several digital transformation platforms can support the chapter organizations in their transformation journey. They enhance business operations, increase revenues, and improve the productivity of the chapters by using the latest technology.
Glue Up, one of the leading digitalization platforms offers chapter management software that enables multi-tier businesses to check the health of all their branches. It allows chapter leaders to share information, streamline workflows and keep track of their activities.
BPM-D, another cloud-based solution helps chapter-based organizations align their digital transformation strategies with their goals. The main function of this software is to prioritize high-performing tasks that drive successful results.
Digital transformation technologies provide virtual peer-to-peer network support to their users. The use of these technologies can help chapter leaders by creating a virtual community where they can share tips and success stories with other franchises and headquarters.
They can also make technology recommendations and set performance benchmarks to compare their efforts with other tiers to know where they are lagging.
Digitalization involves the incorporation of new technologies that demands training employees on how to use them. This involves fostering a thriving training culture with innovation and a growth mindset.
You can use a learning management system to provide training to your chapters and track their progress. The new AI technologies combined with machine learning can create a personalized learning path for each employee according to their capabilities, skillset, and intelligence.
It also enables you to customize modules, training materials, and methods based on an employee's background and experience so that each employee receives a tailored learning experience.
Some other ways of incorporating training include mandating employees to take a set of tests or courses before being hired or promoted. Additionally, you can make hands-on training compulsory for your employees to instill a culture of learning.
As part of a digital transformation, organizations may be required to completely rethink their organizational models as well as integrate new technologies. Digitalization strategies, therefore involve changes at every level of an organization, from the day-to-day procedures to the top-level organizational hierarchy.
Following are some of the most effective business transformation strategies that can help you improve the virtual community engagement in your organization.
Virtual event gamification is one of the newest and most effective ways of boosting members’ engagement. It involves using game mechanics in the events to create a unique virtual experience. The gamification experience is normally carried out on a live platform and can be converted well to virtual, hybrid, or in-person settings.
You can create contests such as virtual scavenger hunts or trivia games to incite a little competition that can act as an ice breaker. There can be a virtual leaderboard that shows your attendees their points and rewards for being the top players.
Thanks to advanced data analytics, you can now measure the success of event gamification in creating member engagement.
E-learning can be a great way to engage association members virtually. You can take advantage of the digital transformation platforms to bring people together who otherwise wouldn’t have a chance to meet.
Don’t forget to share the benefits of e-learning with your team to show them the value of these opportunities and bring in more members.
You can also use AI platforms to make virtual training interesting with video tutorials, gamification, audio-guided presentations, and live events. Similarly, hybrid meetings can be arranged to engage experts from several chapters, making e-learning more effective.
Social media is a great platform to reach association members and build meaningful connections with them.
Even though they are often mistaken as a less serious form of engagement, they can be extremely valuable in building and maintaining a long-lasting connection. In addition to increasing engagement, it's also a good way for members to get to know one another and provide them with a space to talk.
Platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn are great for networking, a more personalized connection can be made using the private community apps on digitalization platforms.
The 1-on-1 chat feature on Glue Up’s digitalization platform helps members talk to each other privately and share their business cards. They can post on the community wall using the community app and keep the conversation going to carry on the buzz even after an event has ended.
Members look forward to meeting and learning from like-minded individuals. Virtual speed networking can help them grow their networks and encourage their involvement in your organization’s offerings.
Spark, the new Glue Up initiative, offers robust online networking by automatically pairing event attendees with one another. It connects them on a short, intimate 1-on-1 video call to build an effective network.
The smart matching technology streamlines engagement by finding the right pair for all the attendees. They can share virtual business cards, take meeting notes and schedule a meeting after the event to continue their conversations.
What’s more? The platform offers a detailed report of the attendees showing how they were matched with an ROI analysis and data to guide performance improvement.
Your website may be the first platform your potential members visit to stay updated with your association. Make sure you keep them informed by providing an efficient website with all the information easily navigable.
Ensure that your website has a clean layout that not only helps your customers find what they are looking for but also encourages further engagement with your site content.
If you are a multi-chapter organization, you can use Glue Up’s chapter management software to create a customized website for each branch. Each chapter can have its own design, about us, and database to keep regional members informed.
Additionally, you can use Liferay to create a personalized web experience for your members. This digital experience platform analyzes the prospect's data including signups and searches and generates smart content for them on your website.
You can bring a healthy competition into your virtual event by introducing digital badges and titles.
Awards like Best Attendee or Exhibitor of the Year should be available for members to add to their profiles, encouraging them to get more involved and collect as many recognitions as possible. Additionally, you can offer a small-level digital badge or ranking for specific digital activities, such as designing a post or participating in your community group.
These badges provide members with a way to compare their activity levels in comparison to others and encourage friendly competition among them. Automated rewards are also a great way to show your employees how much you value them.
Virtual fundraising is a great idea to improve members’ engagement in a nonprofit organization. The greatest benefit of this event is that you can attract people from all around the world, including sponsors and volunteers.
You can arrange virtual fundraising for larger events such as capital campaigns. This will help you get more sponsors, while engaging board members, chapter leaders, and volunteers.
Many organizations believe that the virtual environment is a hindrance to their growth, but in reality, digital engagements are capable of offering an array of unique events and activities.
Your organization can make use of the expanded possibilities of the digital world by incorporating diverse events that include people from different regions and educational backgrounds.
Diverse events help your team better understand customer preferences of different cultures. It also helps you attract top talent and achieve innovative results.
Distributing online prizes is a great way to increase virtual engagement among members. Tangible rewards take one step further by adding a practical aspect to them. They have the emotional power to make attendees feel connected with your event.
Discounts, gift cards, and other incentive packages not only encourage maximum participation but also create unique momentos so that your organization can be remembered for a long-time.
Organizations with in-person events and meetups feel more connected with their members than virtual ones. However, with the right digital transformation technologies, you can create a community experience for virtual members as well.
Glue Up’s community management software enables a private community experience for organizations. The platform provides each member with a secure medium to connect, share their thoughts, create groups, and organize interactive virtual events.
Each regional chapter can have its private community to connect with its members and keep them updated with their upcoming events, new launches, and community news.
Since it's also important that members can connect on a personal level, there is a 1-on-1 chat feature on the platform where they can build meaningful relationships and share important documents including their virtual business cards.
You can also use Association Management Software to streamline your virtual membership strategies. This powerful module can increase your efficiency by automating the engagement tracking which will help you create informed strategies to improve your virtual membership efforts.
As in-person engagements are making their way back, they cannot replace virtual events. It is predicted that hybrid events will be more popular in the coming years, providing various ways for attendees to connect.
However, to stay connected and encourage their ongoing engagement, your organization must create unique digital strategies to ensure success. Furthermore, it necessitates dedicated digitalization platforms and comprehensive membership tools to rely on.
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