A Quick Refresher on Membership Renewals: 4 Best Practices

By Callie Walker, MemberClicks

Renewal season is in FULL FORCE. But even though you knew it was coming, that doesn’t exactly make it easier. How can you bump up the chances that your members will actually renew?

Well there’s no guaranteed approach, but there are several best practices. Take a look!

  1. Always start by thanking your members

When drafting renewal reminder emails, before mentioning anything else, extend a sincere ‘thank you’ to your members. By simply being a member, they’ve supported your organization and mission, and that deserves to be acknowledged.

Consider opening your renewal reminder emails with the following:

Dear [First Name],

First and foremost, we want to thank you for your continued involvement with [Organization]. Without your loyalty and support, we would not be able to continuously provide our members with valuable benefits and actively develop our [community or industry]. Put simply, you make what we do possible.

  1. Explicitly state your top member benefits

Even if your members are quite familiar with your benefits, it’s important to remind them what they’ll be missing should they choose not to renew.

Now you don’t have to list all of your member benefits here, and quite frankly, you really shouldn’t - that’d be a pretty lengthy list! Rather, list the benefits that are the most valuable and the most utilized among your membership.

One way to approach this might be to say something along the lines of…

Remember, [Organization] values you and helps you meet your professional goals in several ways, including:

  • [Benefit highlight]
  • [Benefit highlight]
  • [Benefit highlight]
  • [Benefit highlight]
  1. Include a quick link to review

If you want people to renew (which of course you do), it’s important to make that process as easy as possible, and that means including a link to renew - maybe even a couple links - right there in the email. Let them know it’s an easy process, so they’ll be more inclined to renew right then and there.

For example, you could say something like…

Good news! There’s still time to renew, and it’s as easy as ever with these options:

  1. Click on this link, [renewal URL], and follow the prompts.
  2. Call us at [phone number], and we’ll renew your membership over the phone with a credit card.
  1. Don’t leave it at one or two reminders - be persistent!

You may have renewal reminder emails set up to go out automatically, and if so, that’s GREAT. (Another best practice.) But don’t just leave it at one or two reminders.

Let’s say you send those emails and someone doesn’t renew. Continue to follow up with them, letting them know their membership has lapsed and encouraging them to renew. You’d want to include the same elements as above - the thank you, the list of benefits, the quick links to renew - but just with the added note that their membership fee is past due and you really don’t want to see them go!

Like we mentioned earlier, there are no guarantees in membership renewals, but there are best practices. For even more of them, check out our free guide, Best Practices for Membership Renewals!
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