Is your association looking for ways to boost your ties with Gen Z members? At times, it may seem like younger members are speaking a different language but strengthening your communication with Gen Z professionals ensures a future of member engagement and retention.
Here are five ways to improve your connection with young professionals at your association:
How to connect with Gen Z members at your association
Positive member engagement with young professionals doesn’t just happen overnight. It takes strategy, effort, and time. Here’s how to get started:
1. Engage on the right social media platforms. Go where your younger members are. According to Community Brands 2022 Association Trends Study, 82% of Gen Z members connect on YouTube and Instagram, 69% on TikTok, and 67% on Snapchat. While 78% of organizations used LinkedIn as their primary social media, only 34% of the total surveyed members engage on the platform. Younger members are even less likely to use LinkedIn, with only 15% of respondents using the network.
Boost your association’s virtual presence on Gen Z’s preferred social media platforms. Now that you know where your younger members connect, how do you get your association started on a new platform? Look to other professional organizations for inspiration and advice on how to engage. Try following the example of how organizations like Save the Music, No Kid Hungry, or the American Red Cross leverage TikTok to connect with their audiences.
2. Make your website predictive and user-friendly. Is your website optimized to meet young members’ needs? When Gen Z members come to your site, ensure you have what they’re looking for. Young members want personalization. According to research conducted by WP Engine, 41% of Gen Z respondents left a website if it didn’t predict what they liked, wanted, or needed. Consider the example of YouTube’s recommendation algorithms that offer personalized suggestions based on videos users have watched. Gen Z is looking for similar predictive and personalized content from your website.
TECH TIP: With the powerful combination of Nimble AMS and The Lightning Store, you can personalize e-commerce for Gen Z with Lightning Cross Sell. This feature highlights related products for customers, emphasizing a personalized member experience.
You can add increased functionality to your website in the form of FAQ pages and chatbots. It’s no secret that young members avoid talking on the phone. Boost member satisfaction by providing detailed answers to common customer service problems on your FAQ page. Invest in chatbots to improve the member experience by offering real-time answers to your member’s questions.
3. Create engaging content. Ensure Gen Z members feel heard by creating content specifically for this audience. How? The easiest way to begin is by talking with young members at events and listening to their experiences. By building relationships with Gen Z members, you can learn what industry issues are important and likewise what content members want to see. Through your continued connection with young members, you’ll also ensure your content is engaging and authentic to readers.
Another great way to gather ideas for content for young professionals is to meet with your staff. It’s likely your employees have a better understanding of the membership experience. Turn to them for guidance about the specific challenges Gen Z members face. Once you have topic ideas, be sure to build them out in various content mediums including social media posts, videos, webinars, blogs, and whitepapers.
4. Listen to your Gen Z members. If you don’t already have a dedicated online platform at your association, invest in an integrated virtual community to boost Gen Z member engagement. Create dedicated subgroups for young professionals to network as they join your association. Try connecting new members with member ambassadors to increase organizational awareness. While moderating the online platform, take the time to listen to any suggestions or concerns.
TECH TIP: Use Nimble Communities to improve the member experience for young professionals by providing personalized content feeds and networking opportunities so Gen Z members connect with your association the minute they join.
5. Ask for their feedback. Young members will invest in your association if you, 1.) routinely ask for their feedback, and 2.) implement their suggestions. Consider using pulsing surveys to regularly capture member feedback. Pulsing surveys are quick to complete and sent weekly to bi-weekly, with one to two simple questions.
TECH TIP: With Nimble AMS, powered by Salesforce, you’ll be able to find the best survey solution for your association. Browse the Salesforce AppExchange for over 7,000 apps that seamlessly integrate with your data on Nimble AMS.
A focus group is another fantastic method to capture member feedback. While not anonymous, focus groups allow for discussion over a series of questions, encouraging thoughtful consideration of one’s feedback. When creating a focus group of your Gen Z members, ensure you pick individuals that are representative and diverse of the demographic.
Most of all, you’ll want to guarantee that you acknowledge and follow up on any feedback your association receives from surveys or focus groups. Doing so ensures a fantastic ongoing connection with your Gen Z members.
Learn more about how to connect with Gen Z members at your association
If you want to discover more tips about how to engage Gen Z members at your organizations, check out our infographic: Engage and retain younger members at your association.