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Effective Ways to Improve New Member Onboarding Process in Associations

Credit: Ayesa Lubag, Marketing Content Specialist


Building a good onboarding plan is essential to make new members familiar with the benefits of joining an association and involving them in the process of fulfilling its mission.


Getting new members and engaging them are critical components to organizational success, but have been challenging since the beginning of the pandemic. When you welcome professionals to your group, ensure them that they made the right decision and that their time and money will not go to waste.

If you are looking for ways to enhance your association’s new member onboarding process, you’ve come to the right place.

This article will enumerate the best ways to conduct member orientation, which is critical to showing the value of your association and making individuals feel appreciated in the group that can even encourage future member renewals.

1. Send a welcome email to new members

Great relationships will serve as the foundation of an association. A welcome email is a good way to build rapport when developing meaningful relationships with new members.


Studies have shown the importance of welcome emails. In fact, they have an average read rate of 34%, which is 42% higher than the average read rate of other types of emails.


A new member welcome email sets the tone of your association and motivates individuals to interact with you. Therefore, it’s essential to be mindful of what to include in the first email.


Start with a well-crafted and personalized email to improve member experience and to show how much you value them. Include the association’s background, information on member benefits, and direction on how they can reach out to you.


Once memberships have been approved, you can send emails to primary new members and other important contacts within 24 hours.


When you receive a positive response from recipients, you can expect them to be more receptive in the future.

2. Organize a new member orientation

Member orientation is one of the onboarding ideas that can help new members learn more about your organization, find their way easily, and meet new people they can get along with.


The orientation process should be both informative and social. Besides providing them with important details about your group, discuss the different opportunities you prepare for them to meet and engage with each other more.


Whether it’s a virtual event, a local meetup, or a general association conference, mentioning these occasions can give them an idea of the value your organization offers when facilitating valuable conversations.


Organizing a speed networking event with other professionals is also a good idea to foster relationship building among old and new members.


Invite veteran members who can talk about their success stories and how the association has helped reach them. Real-life stories create meaningful narratives that can get others’ interests and keep their attention than formal PowerPoint presentations.


You can also opt to host a webinar orientation since it’s a feasible, affordable, and effective way to communicate the key association facts.


However, keep in mind that you need a solid strategy for these webinars to succeed when improving member engagement.


Glue Up’s Webinar Engagement Solution lets you run webinars and provides your attendees with a premium and seamless membership experience.


Attendees can easily access the association’s agenda and presentations. Additionally, they can exchange business cards, request meetings, and engage in one-on-one chats.


With a reliable network, attendees can speak clearly and share their insights with panelists safely and securely in real-time during webinars or conferences.

3. Present an onboarding video

Welcome new members with an onboarding video as you incorporate technology trends in your association to stay ahead.


Create a new member onboarding video that is both informational and entertaining. Begin with your association’s website through a walkthrough video that shows navigation tips and important pages to check.


Come up with a video that explains your association’s mission and vision. Next, show them the member portal login, content resource center, and the other benefits they can have online. You can compile all clips into one video and send them to new members. b This can provide them with more information on the association’s principles and give an idea of how the office looks and the kind of culture you have.

4. Engage with new members on social media

Social media engagement measures member interactions on social media accounts and content. According to Facebook, creating human interactions online can promote a greater sense of well-being.


Most people are on social media these days. Other than offering support, your members expect you to reach out as well.


Therefore, engaging with new members is a must, especially if you have millennials in the association.


To begin, post an announcement on social media that welcomes new members to your group. It will make them feel good about their decision to become a member of your association


You can also include the link in the updates if you have a webpage that introduces new members. Feel free to suggest a Facebook group, a Twitter list, or a LinkedIn group that they can look up and join.


Regardless of the social media platform you use, you can reach out to new members by searching for their handles and tagging new people in the post.


Monitor the new ones and boost member engagement to show that you continuously stay on top. It’s also a great way for the new members to feel valuable, heard, and respected.

5. Be open to asking for feedback

It is important to get feedback from new members to ensure that the onboarding process is gaining the desired effect.


You can use it as a basis for improving existing methods and offerings. If your new member orientation didn’t work out as expected, you can determine what was inefficient and make some adjustments to improve its chances of success.


The ideal time to collect feedback is 6 months as it would give more time for members to adjust to the process and make new connections.


In the same way, getting information about their reactions right after the event is also advised. But make sure to actively ask and listen to fresh ideas.


There are different ways to collect member feedback. It’s no secret that reaching out to new and first-year members through a phone call is an effective way to gain valuable information on an association’s performance.


On the other hand, an online poll or survey can help quickly gather member feedback to better understand them, improve association decisions, and increase member satisfaction


Moreover, you can refine your existing processes and identify what motivates your members to develop member engagement strategies.


The Glue Up system makes it easier for you to create and distribute a survey that collects the information your association needs to make confident choices.


Our Surveys Solution lets you create polls, surveys, and quizzes in a few clicks. You can customize a survey from scratch or choose from our pre-made survey templates in minutes.


Furthermore, you can collect data automatically and generate insights that can help you make better, data-driven decisions.


An effective onboarding process will help new members learn more about the association, feel more valued, and increase their engagement.


Since onboarding is correlated to the membership strategy plan, you should begin by planning a checklist for effective new member orientation.


Now that you know how to nail the new member onboarding process, we hope that you get a stronger member experience, higher attendee engagement, and better member retention with the strategies we have provided.


Are you looking for innovative ways to provide your members with a better experience? Book a demo of our all-in-one membership management software, and we will show you the Glue Up platform and the best event management tools we have to automate and simplify the entire process.


Credit: Ayesa Lubag, Marketing Content Specialist

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