Marketing & Communications

How Your Association Can Use Video To Engage Members

By Brianna Lawson • May 2, 2015

Brianna Lawson, Naylor Association Solutions
Brianna Lawson, Naylor Association Solutions

There’s no doubt that video is a powerful communications tool. Using social media, email, digital publications and events to promote your videos will help you inform members of this wonderful benefit you offer.

 

Video is a concise and exciting way to communicate with members. RealLilTweetables

Developing videos will help your association maximize its communication and content strategy efforts while minimizing time spent on less effective methods. RealLilTweetables

For advertisers and marketers, video is a great opportunity to build brand awareness. RealLilTweetables

From our 2014 Association Communications Benchmarking Report, you will see that nearly half of associations (44 percent) report that they have already integrated video into their communication strategies, and one fourth of respondents (24 percent) said they plan to integrate video in the near future.

Aaron Weisberg, Naylor
Aaron Weisberg, Naylor Association Solutions

According to Aaron Weisberg, video sales manager at Naylor Association Solutions, “Association TV has the highest completion rates of any video clips that I have seen in my career. Most viewers are watching between 80 and 100 percent of [each episode]. Metrics like this tell us that the user is committed to the content and interested to learn more about everything it has to offer.”

Video is also a compelling medium for advertisers and sponsors. “After 90 seconds of exposure to the content, when that viewer clicks through to your website, he or she is ready to learn more about your product or service,” Weisberg added.

Let’s take a look at how some associations are currently using video and how it has impacted their communication strategies.

The Material Handling Equipment Distributors Association has seen great success using video to enhance their educational offerings. MHEDA has used its credibility in the industry to partner with companies such as Mitsubishi, Caterpillar, and Toyota to produce a video series about the proper use of forklifts in material handling.

MHEDA’s Executive Vice President, Liz Richards, said, “Having a video platform in our array of communication methods simply provides MHEDA with another means of communicating to our members. It’s a short, easy and concise way to communicate our messaging across many different types of social and electronic media.”

Caren Kelly, manager of marketing and trade shows at the Western Retail Lumber Association (WRLA), encourages the use of video as a great addition to one’s current communications strategy. “Videos engage people in a way that photos and text alone cannot,” she stated. “They give us the power to visually showcase our products and services as well as providing information in half the time. And, thanks to mobile devices, you can access the content anywhere, on any device, at any time.”

Western Retail Lumber Association

The Benefits of Using Video

Ensure that your association is taking advantage of all the benefits that video has to offer. Here are just a few of the benefits that can come with integrating video into your current communication strategies:

  1. Video can increase member engagement. Just like photos, videos draw people in instantly. Members are looking for quick and easy ways to access information that’s important to them and relevant to their industry of expertise. Developing videos will help your association maximize its communication and content strategy efforts while minimizing time spent on less effective methods.
  1. Video can be promoted as an exclusive member benefit. MHEDA lists video as the first item under its member benefits. Both members and non-members are able to access videos listed under quick business tips, membership services, upcoming MHEDA events, convention presentations, and something worth sharing. But, members receive a discount on videos from MHEDA University. And, it has a video on their member benefits page that talks about the resources it has to offer and why the association is right for you. This video is the perfect example of how an association is using video as a teaser to entice potential members to join the organization and reinforcing the benefits of membership once they have joined.

    MHEDA Benefits Video
    MHEDA provides the perfect example of how to use video as a teaser and entice potential members to join the organization while at the same time reinforcing the benefits of membership once they have joined.
  1. Video can supply meaningful content in a new way. Your members have already shown you that they are interested in and will understand your message. Using video is a captivating way to present content to members that they will enjoy, especially if they are looking for a large amount of information in a short amount of time.
  1. Video can attract new members, especially younger ones. Video can be an effective recruiting tool. Featuring videos of members from your association talking about what they are excited about that relates to the industry allows younger individuals to more easily identify with your association – because they share the same interests as your current members.

Liz Richards, MHEDA’s executive vice president, stated, “Current and potential members are more likely to watch a video when they are hearing from and seeing their peers on screen. These are the people with whom they network and share the same challenges. Messages resonate much more when they can hear right from a member about how they are addressing a particular business situation or implementing a best practice.”Material Handling Equipment Distributors Association

Younger individuals will seriously consider joining your association if they see and hear what current members are doing and talking about.

  1. Video can increase non-dues revenue. The promotion of video leads to greater exposure for advertisers. Therefore, the better you market your videos, the happier your advertisers will be and the more likely they’ll renew.

When someone identifies with content then they will identify with the brand associated with the content. Therefore, video is a great opportunity to build brand awareness for associations themselves as well as their advertisers and sponsors. When a video is issue-related and not product-related, viewers can more closely associate themselves with what’s currently happening in the story. That’s another opportunity to incorporate your brand so that the viewer associates your product or service with the issue they are facing.

WRLA provides a great example of an association using video to generate non-dues revenue. Their video channel home page has three advertisements to the right of the current video. If you poke around and select different videos, you can see that the ads change, but still remain in a prime location.

WRLA Video Home Page Ads
In this example, WRLA’s video channel home page has two advertisements to the right of the current video.

MHEDA provides training videos at the MHEDA University for a fee. These training videos are of presentations one may have missed from a conference they held and the fee for members is significantly lower than that of non-members.

MHEDA University offers members and non-members the option to access videos, for a fee, of conferences from multiple topics and speakers.
MHEDA University offers members and non-members the option to access videos, for a fee, of conferences from multiple topics and speakers.

These are just a few of the reasons that more and more associations are turning to video. But, don’t just create videos to show you can “do” video; that won’t increase member engagement or revenue. Put yourself in your member’s shoes and develop videos that provide something meaningful to them, as MHEDA did with its training videos. How can your association use video to enhance its communications?

Next month, we’ll discuss ways to promote your videos more successfully.

Brianna Lawson is an online marketing specialist at Naylor Association Solutions.