How To Stop Losing Club Members
Did you know that in the late 1970s, Stephen Pile created the "Not Terribly Good Club of Great Britain" to celebrate human inadequacy? He then wrote a book called "The Book of Heroic Failures" as an official handbook for the club.
Unfortunately, the book became a best-seller, which led to Pile being kicked out of the club he founded because he was too successful. The club received 20,000 applications within a few months due to the book's popularity, and they disbanded as a result. Pile reflected, "the club disbanded on the grounds that it was now a roaring success. Even as failures, we failed." (Pile, 1989)
That is the exact opposite reason why most clubs lose members and fail. So today, we will cover possible reasons why your club is losing members and what you can do to fix it.
Why a Club Loses Members
- Lack of Content and Activities
- Poor website
- High fees
- Poor communication
- Competition from Other Clubs
These are all reasons why your club may be losing members, so let's break down each of these problems and what you can do to fix them. To Make sure your club is the very best it can be.
Does My Club Lack of Content and Events?
Have you ever joined a club that was disappointing in the activities and content it offered? It can be frustrating to pay for a membership and not feel like you're getting your money's worth. This is a common reason why people choose to leave clubs. People may be leaving your club because it does not provide enough engaging activities or exciting content.
How To Add More Content To My Club?
Your club's content is critical in not only member retention but attracting new members as well. The content on your club's website will typically fall into the following categories:
- Club Newsletters
- Training Information and Resources
- Educational Resources
- News on upcoming events
- Merchandise store
What your club does will determine which of these you need, as all of these don't make sense for every club. A car club, for example, will probably not need training resources, but they should make up for this in other areas. They can do this by focusing on content like newsletters or ensuring they make up for the lack of content with increased events. Content like newsletters and news on upcoming events should be used by every club, from knitting clubs to fishing clubs.
A great way to work out what content you should have on your club website is by visiting other club websites and seeing what they have on theirs. So have a browse around and see what others are offering.
How To Add More Activities To My Club
The activities your club runs are one of the most important aspects of your club. Sharing your passion and hobby is one of the main reasons why you started your club in the first place. So, ensuring activities play a central role in your club is vital.
You are probably already hosting regular events and activities focusing on your club's passion and aims. If your events aren't happening regularly, consider making them more consistent. If your events have to be further apart, it's important to keep talking about them and getting people excited about what's coming up next. That way, your members will always know what's happening and know that you are working on events for them.
Hosting and advertising events and activities is only half the battle. You also need to be continually improving these events. You can do this by conducting polls and surveys of your members. Doing this will allow you to better understand what your members do and don't like about the events you are running.
Is My Club’s Website Good Enough?
What is the point of your club having fantastic content and events if your website is so poor that your members can never find them? Your website is the first thing many prospective members will see, and it's how your current members interact with your club. It should be a major priority to ensure your website looks great and is easy to use. A poor or hard-to-use website will drive away potential new members and may lead to members leaving your club.
Here’s a short checklist of things your website needs to be great:
- A good looking design
- Easy navigation
- Works and looks good on computers and phones
- Your club’s logo and colour scheme
- Social media links
- Blog articles
- Good content
- Easy to use
How to Improve My Club's Website
If you're not already using a website builder like Wix or SquareSpace you should consider signing up. They could massively increase the quality of your website. Otherwise you should consider an all-in-one membership management system like Member Jungle, who can build a website for you. If you are interested here are the links to the Wix Pricing Page, SquareSpace Pricing Page and Member Jungle Pricing Page. We will talk about membership management systems shortly. For now, you need to focus on getting the best website you can and ensure you put your best foot forward.
Are My Club's Fees Too High?
A big reason why members leave clubs is that they feel as though they are paying too much in membership dues. Now this isn't necessarily something you can help. Sometimes people will simply not be able to afford to be a member of your club.
However, there are two things you can do to help lessen how often your club loses members because of this. Firstly you can reassess how much your membership fees cost. You may find that they are slightly too expensive or you may find that they are very reasonably priced. Either way you should look into this and see what other similar clubs are charging. You may even want to offer a cheaper version of your membership, that allows members lessened access to club perks.
Secondly, you can explain on your website why your fees cost what they do. Breakdown the cost, and where all the money goes. People will be a lot happier to hand over their hard earned cash if they know how it is being spent and what they are getting for it.
Does My Club Communicate Well?
Communicating with your members clearly and effectively is a great way to increase member retention. You want to be able to let your members know what events are on, what courses are available and when their membership is up for renewal effectively. If you have to email back and forth with a member half a dozen times about a question or continually clarify when and where an event is on, that is a sign you are not communicating effectively.
How To Communicate With My Members Better
The best way to improve communication with your members is by having a high-quality website. You should also implement a regular newsletter that goes out to members. One newsletter a month is a good target to aim for. Your newsletter should include information on upcoming events, photos and details of recent events and updates on any merchandise or courses that are newly available.
You should also consider implementing a membership management system, which will be able to solve a whole bunch of problems for you and your club. Member Jungle offers a variety of ways for you to communicate better with your club, including:
- Blog posts
- Push notifications to your Member Jungle club app
- Email marketing
- Member only chatrooms
Membership management software can help your club manage member information, activities, and finances. With features like member registration, database management, communication tools, event management, and financial tracking, a membership management system can streamline administrative tasks, boost member engagement and retention, and offer valuable insights into the organisation's performance.
We at Member Jungle run a membership management system, which you can find out more about here; What is Membership Management Software? Or Video: All of your Member Jungle Questions Answered.
For now though let’s keep talking about what you can do to help improve your club and stop losing Members without using a membership management system.
Competition From Other Clubs
As we've already discussed, it's a good idea to check out what other clubs are doing to see how you compare. If another club that's having more events, has a better website and is communicating better with its members, it's possible that you may start losing members to them. This can be one of the big reasons why clubs lose members. The members aren’t falling out of love with the hobby that drove them to your club in the first place, they are simply falling for a new club. So pay close attention to other clubs that are similar to yours to make sure that you don’t get left behind.
How To Stop Members From Leaving My Club?
If you want to stop losing members and be a more successful club than the “Not Terribly Good Club of Great Britain”, you can start improving on everything we discussed above. Pay more attention to your members, improve your website, focus on content and events and look at how much you charge for membership.
Another thing you can do is research membership management systems to see if they would work for your club. They may not be the correct answer for your club, but you’ll never know if you don’t look into it. If you want to know how to improve your club and don’t want to feel like you’re being sold something, look at 9 ways to add value to your membership club in 2023.
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