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June 02, 2006

Online membership renewals

I have to bite my tongue when I talk to association executives who haven't started collecting dues online because I'm in awe at how effective our online membership renewals are.

Our fiscal year began on May 1, and we began collecting renewals by sending an e-mail dues statement early that morning. By the end of that first day, we had collected nearly 13% of our total annual dues revenue budget for the entire fiscal year.

We sent an additional two e-mail dues statements in the month of May, and when we closed for business on May 31, we had collected over 60% of all renewals for the year, nearly 60% of the entire fiscal year's budgeted dues revenue -- in one month!

The amount collected in May also represented almost 22% of our association's total budgeted revenue for the entire fiscal year. Last year, we renewed 62.7% of all members online. I'm curious to see where we'll land this year.

Some of the tactics we used which I think helped drive our success: We sent three dedicated dues e-mail statements, included a dues renewal promotion in the signature line of all outgoing staff e-mails, put a link to renew on our homepage, and included a renewal announcement in our monthly e-mail newsletter. We also promoted the savings in staff time and postage, paper, check processing and so on in the body of our dues statements:

These electronic transactions save thousands of dollars in materials, postage and staff time annually, allowing staff to allocate your dues dollars to providing the services you expect and deserve. Thank you for renewing online.
If anyone has research showing how other associations are doing with online renewals, I'd love to see how we stack up.


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