Daily Buzz: Find the Dollar Value of Engagement

As an association professional, you know that member engagement is important. But what does engagement really mean and how do you measure it?

Maneesha Manges writes on the HighRoad Solution blog that engagement is generally defined as the connection a member feels with an organization and is typically measured by website visits, event attendance, interaction with educational resources , etc

“But still, these numbers only give us a rough snapshot of what’s going on in our association,” Manges says. “Essentially, it doesn’t tell us whether we are spending money in the right places or whether we need to invest our resources elsewhere.”

One metric that can provide insight into the dollar value of engagement: return on engagement (ROE). While it can be difficult to measure accurately, Manges says finding ROE comes down to three steps:

1. Identify all engagement-related revenue. This includes membership dues, event fees and voluntary contributions.

2. Identify all costs associated with the engagement. How much does it cost to produce shows or events, including staff and marketing efforts?

3. Calculate the ROE. Once you have the two numbers, subtract the cost from the revenue and multiply by 100. This will give you your ROE percentage.

“Member engagement will always be a little loose because ultimately it’s all about emotion,” Manges says. “To really understand engagement, you’ll need qualitative feedback like member surveys and interviews. However, looking at quantitative financial data will give you great insight into whether you’re doing it right or need to rethink your strategy.

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Want a speaker to feel really special? Try sticking his face on everything. Not really.

At this year’s OMR festival, a digital marketing event in Europe, conference organizers put images of speaker Taylor Lorenz’s face on coffee mugs, pillows and water bottles – and even put his name on a car – as part of his efforts to spread the red carpet for Atlantic writer, who focuses on social media culture. That’s personalization.

Other links to note

The first year of membership is a crucial factor in retaining members. The MemberSuite blog explains why you need an onboarding plan.

Are you exploring impact investing? the Stanford Social Innovation Review describes when it’s the right decision and when it could be a waste.

An efficient digital work platform includes these nine characteristics, according to CMSWir.

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