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7 Resources for Building a Community of Engaged Members

One common nonprofit financial model is membership, and in organizations built on membership models, members’ dues often account for large portions of funding and revenue. Designing meaningful and value-driven member experiences is key to these nonprofits’ impact and their financial success. It requires organizations to begin their journey at the brand level—then, they can design the full user experience and select the proper technologies to facilitate these member experiences. If your nonprofit thrives on a membership model, offering meaningful member support, providing timely and transparent communications, and listening to and implementing member feedback will ensure that the promises you’re making are seen and realized by your community.

How you combine members’ needs (the user experience) and the technology you use to meet these needs (from nurturing potential members to collecting dues, or onboarding, engaging, and extending the experience) creates a large part of your nonprofit’s brand experience, which will ultimately drive perceptions. In this Constructively Curated newsletter, we’re going to explore some resources and tools that begin with the brand experience—what it means to be connected to an association or a member community—and help member-driven nonprofits to evaluate and design their member experience utilizing the full power of technology.

– Your Friends at Constructive

The 5 E’s of Brand Experience

This framework is great for member experiences—but it can be utilized for so much more. The 5 E’s are useful for designing almost every kind of digital experience. The framework helps an organization attract the right members, demonstrate its value, engage existing members, and extend value far beyond the interactions.

Member Journey Mapping

Member journeys are one of the most important aspects of designing the full member experience. When organizations take the time to define these journeys, determine how they want members to feel, and decide their role in delivering that experience, both the members and the organization benefit.

Extraordinary Member Experiences

First impressions matter, and often times, the first four weeks of membership set the tone for a member’s entire experience. The path to a good membership experience is paved with strategic roadmapping. Members should feel welcomed but not overwhelmed, excited but not pressured, and rewarded for engagement rather than ignored.


Thoughtful communications plans are essential in membership organizations. It’s not just a one-way street, either. The way an organization welcomes and provides orientation for new members is a critical part of their engagement, retention, and overall success. And the more personalized the communication, the better.

Getting Feedback

There are many tools and resources out there to help you gather member feedback. One of the most important tasks in gathering member feedback is being able to look at data and changes in trends over time. We’ll look at some tools for gathering feedback and metrics for evaluating progress.

Personalizing Your CMS

Strong membership experiences are personal. Thankfully, there are plenty of strategies for personalizing that experience to increase convenience, relevance, and conversion for your member base. You can learn how to utilize new personalization techniques and leverage your existing technology to make tailor-made membership experiences.

CRM and Marketing Automation

Utilizing the power of CRM and marketing automation can help you build a journey that nurtures members every step of the way. From lead conversions and onboarding to member surveys, a strong CRM and automation process will help you leverage your member data to boost satisfaction and retention.


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