Each year, Forj conducts research to explore member expectations and uncover what professionals really want from the associations they belong to. The resulting State of Member Experience (MX) Report offers association leaders critical insights to understand, improve, and master MX.
This year’s report revealed key findings about the number one driver of member retention: community.
The Retention Imperative
Earlier this year, Forj conducted a survey to better understand how associations are thriving or surviving today. We questioned 78 organizations on membership and non-dues revenue trends and their responses revealed insights about their top priorities in a dynamic environment.
More than 36% of the association leaders we surveyed reported that reducing member attrition is their top focus. More than 27% said their focus is on acquiring new members.
These responses aren’t surprising, given that association member retention rates typically hover between 80% and 85%. That means in order to grow, you have to plug the leaky bucket by boosting retention.
Understanding Member Priorities
You may be clear on your association’s priorities, but how well do you understand what your members want? Our 2023 State of MX Reportresearch aimed to help association leaders answer this question.
In our research, we looked at members’ primary reasons for joining and staying with their associations. For the second year in a row, members' top reason for both joining and staying was "to connect with other members/professionals like me."
Going a step further, we examined members’ priorities based on their career stage. What we discovered is that regardless of where members are in their careers, they’re eager for opportunities to connect and learn. All members are seeking to be part of a vibrant community.
The Power of Community
Community has a profound impact on member retention. Across industries and around the world, organizations have discovered that creating an experience centered on community increases engagement, satisfaction, and loyalty. This underscores the potential for your online community to transform your association’s success.