Member Value Proposition

How the Member Value Proposition can Improve Member Engagement

Looking to improve member engagement?  Then Member Value Proposition (MVP) is the place to start!


At MEMX2018 earlier this year, delegates were asked to confirm if they could articulate their member value position in less than 10 seconds.  A staggering 62% said no or don’t know……

The first step to member engagement is your organisation’s Membership Value Proposition.  It communicates what your members value, and it answers the why should I be a member question.  Developing your proposition enables your organisation’s acquisition and retention strategies, and ensures informed planning and efficient resource allocation.


How does Member Value Proposition help?

MVP helps your organisation to establish what’s working and what isn’t.  It helps to stop the “but we’ve always done it this way” argument, by encouraging your organisation to question your current activities, content, resources, engagement and communication strategies, to make sure that they continue to be specific and relevant.  MVP also helps with resource planning, and it will provide you with an opportunity to benchmark against your mission/vision.

Critically, MVP stops an organisation from falling into the benefits model trap.  Members are not members just because they receive your magazine – they’re not buying a widget from you, something which has a tangible, monetary value.  Membership is about the relationship your supporters and members have with your organisation – the emotions, the images, the memories that your organisation evokes.

Membership Value proposition helps:

MVP also improves your stakeholder relationships.  It provides a common understanding and ensures joined-up and collaborative planning and working.

Focusing on MVP also forces you to think about what makes you different – what are your competitors doing and is it working for them?  What makes your organisation different?  How do you stand out?  What value are you adding?


Member Value Proposition – What is it?

Member Value Proposition is not a list of benefits.  If you’re blast marketing membership benefits and hoping your future and current members will just join or renew you could be in for a shock.  Members, like any customer, need to be continually convinced of your membership’s worth and you need to be able to satisfy the killer question: what’s in it for me?

Member Value Proposition is a promise of a value to be delivered, communicated and acknowledged.  It clearly states what your organisation provides and also how it’s received, appreciated, respected, needed and prized.  It’s also your prospect’s or member’s belief about how value will be delivered, experienced and acquired.  Your intentions and the way your messages are received need to be aligned.

It’s also a member’s rationale for choosing you, which is especially important if you have competitors or separate regulatory bodies vying for your supporters’ attention in the same space.  When they’re thinking about joining or renewing, your Member Value Proposition is the silent conversation they have with themselves before they make their decision, and so it’s absolutely essential that you time your MVP effectively to make sure that you get to them just at the right time and in the right way.


Building your MVP

A good place to start is with the questions below:

For your members and supporters:

For you:

If you have different membership categories, stages, personas, you may need multiple MVP statements to answer the above.

 Using the MVP to measure and evaluate

Getting feedback from your members and supporters identifies clear, measurable and demonstrable benefits, which will assist you with your content planning, engagement strategies and acquisition and retention strategies.

A few areas to consider:

  • How do you record your member interactions?
  • How do you know if an intervention stops someone from resigning?
  • What messages, content, phrases, images encourage someone to join?
  • If you survey your members how do you use that information for further planning and to demonstrate improvements back to your membership?
  • Are you only measuring transactions? Or can you move towards measuring engagement?


And finally.….

MVP isn’t just for the membership team.  Every staff member, trustee, volunteer and advocate should know what your Member Value Proposition is and be able to clearly demonstrate it……in 10 seconds or less!


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