6 Ways to Increase Membership Growth in Nonprofit Organizations

6 Ways to Increase Membership Growth in Nonprofit Organizations

It can be a challenge to figure out how to increase membership in nonprofit organizations. Because nonprofits don’t always have traditional sources of income, they need to find other ways to make profit—and one particular method is membership. A membership program allows organizations to have steady revenue. But in order to get there, nonprofits must think of effective actions to draw in prospective members.

Here are just a few ideas for increasing membership growth for your nonprofit organization.

1. Collaborate with other organizations

Every organization exists to serve a specific community, region, or cause. There is strength in numbers, and partnering with other organizations allows yours to increase its sphere of influence and reach a greater number of people. For this reason, it’s prudent to collaborate with nonprofits that pursue a similar mission and resonate with your values.

Partnering with other nonprofits can also help you when it comes to visibility. Whether it’s a fundraising event or a special service for those in need, nonprofits will be able to elevate one another and collaborate to provide more impactful solutions.

2. Offer meaningful perks

Depending on the scale of your organization, perks can look a bit different—but they are absolutely necessary for membership growth. Members support with monetary contributions and will be expecting to receive something in return.

You have the liberty to be creative with what your organization presents as benefits—if you have a hefty budget, consider merchandise or special discounts for events, workshops, and other kinds of activities. If your nonprofit is on the smaller end, think of cost-friendly ways to still cater to your members. Foster a closely knit, exclusive community where they can help one another, or create an archive of relatable resources and content that only they can unlock. The possibilities are limitless.

3. Simplify the sign-up process

You may think that collecting as much member information as possible might be helpful for your nonprofit. But if the process becomes too complex, and people are forced to jump through hoops to get to an end, they may not find it worth their time. When it comes to sign-ups, simplicity can go a long way. As long as you provide the most crucial information about your organization, as well as an explanation for why your memberships are advantageous, growth will be imminent.

Just remember to place a link to your sign-up where viewers can easily locate it.

4. Promote your membership

Without an effective marketing strategy, it’ll be staggeringly difficult to reach your full growth potential. As a first step, identify your target audience. Then, consider what features about your organization might capture their attention. How can your membership be a solution to their needs?

There are countless approaches to advertising your membership: through emails, physical mail, or even on your organization’s website. Some tactics may be more effective than others, but it’ll take a bit of trial and error to nail down what works best.

This is also when your partnerships come into play. Whether it’s through a social media post, newsletter, or event, ask other nonprofits to help promote your membership program. Because of your established relationships and rapport, people may be more invested in your mission.

5. Optimize your website

We breathe and live in a digital world. Nonprofit or not, organizations and companies of all types need a memorable online presence in order to be noticed. Website optimization helps increase traffic, secure conversions, and boost overall visibility. If your nonprofits’ website is outdated and in urgent need of a new interface, ensure that it receives the digital transformation that it deserves.

6. Create membership tiers

If there is only one option for a membership, it may deter a diverse group of people who might want to participate. To remedy this conflict, your organization can offer several tiers, with each tier promising slightly different perks. Think of a video subscription service. Lower tiers allow members regular access to movies and shows, but insert ads periodically. Higher tiers enable members to skip through the ads and sometimes even uncover bonus content.

It’s the same concept for nonprofit memberships. While there’s a general baseline to what every member receives, higher levels of membership should give a wider set of benefits.

Go for Growth

Learning how to increase membership in nonprofit organizations is not an easy, overnight task. Every nonprofit holds a different metric for growth, and identifying successful methods can take an extraordinary amount of time and effort. But with resilience, humility, and determination, your organization will be able to not only attract a multitude of new members, but also keep current ones committed.

By catering to and investing in your members, you will be championing your nonprofit’s vision for a better future.

Need help identifying and engaging potential members or donors? Learn how our fundraising solution for nonprofits can take your efforts to the next level.