I’ve been critical of NRA’s marketing before, but I’ve also offered suggestions. Today, it’s time for another suggestion.
We all know that periodically NRA offers discounted life memberships and life member upgrades. However, the portion of the membership to receive the offers often seems quite random. I’m sure there’s some equation they do to come up with their lists, but, regardless, not every one gets the offer. In addition, when some do get the offer, they just don’t see the benefit over annual membership. The discount is great if you actually plan on buying a life membership anyway. For those who never thought about it, the conversion rate is going to be greatly reduced.
So, how do you market to a) people who are more likely to take advantage of the buy-in, b) people who could find a “use” in being a life member, and c) get other NRA to do your pressure sales for you?
Taking a look at Sebastian’s gun club newsletter this morning, I see that roughly 10% of their club members have expiring NRA memberships coming due in the next few months. Since the club is a 100% club, there’s a vested interest by the members in keeping up their NRA memberships. Since the club checks everyone’s NRA membership, there’s a vested interest in leaders to minimize work. Haha, we’ve now found a group that meets all three needs above.
So for those of you in Fairfax reading, perhaps it’s time to update the Clubs & Associations databases, plead with membership to open their minds to new ideas, and offer clubs who recruit life members at discounted prices the chance to minimize their own paperwork. Frame it in terms of incentives. Crazy enough, it works as a pitch to most people. In fact, make the minimization of paperwork a theme and offer to create a special co-branded flyer for the clubs to send to their members either via email or snail mail. Bringing on even one new life member, even at a discounted rate, would more than cover the costs.
Now, if we really want to get crazy and look at the incentives for NRA to take a chance with a new marketing idea, they could look at doing this now so that they have more people on their lists for the 2010 elections. I know, it’s nuts!
Oh yeah, and I’ll use this post to put in a pitch that NRA should offer the life member discount their give to their own staff to the staff members of official state associations. They usually make far less than those in Fairfax do, have far fewer benefits (if any), and don’t get much in return. It would the decent thing to do to recognize the contributions those folks (however few right now) make to the cause.