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Six Crucial Steps in Building a Results-Driven Association Marketing Strategy

Six Crucial Steps in Building a Results-Driven Association Marketing Strategy

Crafting an association marketing strategy that truly resonates with your audience and delivers results for your organization can often feel like an incredibly difficult endeavor - especially when you don’t have the know-how or resources in-house to execute it. 

Yet your association’s marketing strategy is critical. It ensures that your organization builds credibility and trust with its audience, engages potential members and positions your brand as an authority within your relevant industry. 

While it may seem like a colossal task, we’re here to break it down into bit-sized, manageable pieces for your team. In this blog, we walk through six crucial steps in building an association marketing strategy.

Step 1. Understand Your Association’s Audience 

A deep understanding of your audience is crucial in developing an effective association marketing strategy. Use market research tools, member surveys, and demographic data to understand who your audience is, what their needs are, and how your association can fulfill those needs. This information will allow you to communicate effectively with your potential members - offering them value they quickly recognize and may not easily find elsewhere.

In fact, any marketing strategy should begin with member persona development. This process ensures that your marketing strategy focuses on answering your prospects' questions and challenges with tailored solutions.

DOWNLOAD - Using Persona-Based Marketing   to Engage Younger Members

Step 2. Identify Your Association’s Unique Value Proposition

A value proposition is more than just a statement of what your association does. It's about the unique aspects that distinguish your association in the minds of your audience. It is what clarifies how you compete for your members’ time, attention and share of wallet. It is what clarifies how you are unique, better or best compared to competition.

Step 3. Implement SMART Goals to Direct Your Association Marketing Strategy

Goals give your organization defined objectives and help you select the data you need to either showcase your marketing results to board members, or adjust your marketing plan to ensure continuous improvements that drive ROI. 

Your goals should be specific, so you know exactly what you're aiming for; measurable, so you can track your progress; achievable, to keep your team motivated; relevant, to ensure they align with your overall business objectives; and time-bound, to create urgency and prompt action. 

Step 4. Gain Buy-In From Key Stakeholders 

When it comes to association marketing, you're not sailing the ship alone. You have a crew of board members and stakeholders who need to be on board with your strategy for it to truly take off. Therefore, before implementing your strategy, you’re going to need to gain buy-in from your association’s most important stakeholders. Numbers speak louder than words here, so use data and analytics to showcase the potential impact of your association marketing strategy.

Step 5. Create Engaging Marketing Content on the Right Channels 

Content is the hub of your association marketing strategy. It could be blog posts, newsletters, webinars, podcasts, or social media updates. The key is to provide value to your audience - whether that's by educating them, making them feel connected, or even just entertaining the - through the most effective channels.  

Step 6. Leverage Data and Analytics to Drive Marketing ROI

Data and analytics can provide invaluable insights into your audience's behavior and preferences, as well as the effectiveness of your marketing efforts. Regularly review your engagement rates, conversion rates, and other key metrics to understand what's working and where you need to make adjustments.



Interested in learning more about how data can help you improve your association marketing strategy? Check out our recent blog, Data Intelligence: Turn Association Marketing Into an ROI Centre.

Not sure where to start? Get in touch with Halmyre today

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Christine Saunders, CM
About Christine Saunders, CM
Halmyre President Christine Saunders is a marketing consultant to service-based organizations, a strategic advisor to marketing executives and leaders, an entrepreneur and a hobby farmer. Prior to founding Halmyre in 2014, Christine owned a traditional integrated marketing and communications agency specializing in financial services, public services and not-for-profits. Her education is in politics, ethics and philosophy, and she is a proud Maritimer despite living in Upper Canada today.