It’s easy to blame millennials. They’re blamed for the decline in the sale of fabric softener, diamonds, beer, homes and more. But if your association’s recruitment ideas don’t target this growing market, you’ll only have yourself to blame.
Why? Because millennials are your association’s largest untapped member market. Don’t believe us? According to the Pew Research Center, they account for the largest generation in the U.S. labor market, at 35 percent.
These are the folks born anywhere from 1981 to 1996. And we’d hazard a guess that they don’t make up as great a percentage of your member base as they do a percentage of the workforce.
So what should your recruitment ideas look like to make sure you don’t lose this massive millennial membership market?
4 Great Guidelines to Grow Millennial Membership
#1 – Stick to Social Media
We all know young people love social media. That’s because it’s a great way to connect with those with similar interests, stay in the loop with hot topics and generally stay aware of what’s going on in the world.
One great way to take advantage of that love for all things social? Find an industry influencer who’s already a member of your association. Then, ask them to tout its benefits.
Pay particular attention to LinkedIn, the playground for the more career-focused millennial. Apparently, 87 million of them are on LinkedIn, just waiting for someone from their industry’s associations to connect.
And since LinkedIn Sales Navigator now seamlessly integrates into Microsoft Dynamics 365, making connections with prospective members will be a breeze.
But don’t forget about other social channels. Instagram, Twitter and YouTube offer fantastic paths toward connecting with your future millennial membership base.
#2 – Find Millennials a Mentor
Try a quick web search. Look up “How to find a mentor.” You’re going to find a lot of results.
The thing about millennials, most of whom grew up typing away on a keyboard, is that many of their skills are self-taught. There’s nothing wrong with that, but it provides your association with a key value proposition to offer.
Many of those self-taught abilities are hard skills. But what about the soft skills like communication, leadership or problem-solving? That’s where a mentor furnished by your association would prove most valuable.
Whether it’s pairing long-time members with new ones, or using your association’s blog to position your association as an industry expert, the opportunity for professional development should be paramount in your millennial marketing strategy.
#3 – Prove Your Value
Here’s where you association’s webinars, e-books and other educational materials come in handy.
We outlined this in a previous blog post, but it’s worth mentioning again.
The gist? There’s not much for good content out there geared toward millennials, or younger people getting started in their industry.
Try offering a few free learning lessons or offer a discounted registration to your association’s next event to spark the membership conversation.
#4 – Find Your Audience. Don’t Make Them Find You
Many millennials have had email accounts as long as they can remember.
To cut through the spam, your email outreach will have to be engaging, have a human touch and offer something valuable. If not, your association’s emails might get a strong open rate, but the click rates could be abysmal.
Check out our guide to email marketing for associations for more info.
Want to keep driving positive member growth at your association? Reach out to the Protech team today to learn more about our association management solution: Alliance by Protech.