Thursday, 29 May 2014

Build trust, get customer details

We know that it’s vital to collect as many member email addresses and mobile numbers as possible, but does your club go about it the right way? A fish bowl card drop prize draw at reception looks like a marketing drive, and will probably collect the same cards as last month, with very few new email addresses.

em@ail by Sean McEntee

It's important to build trust with your members; sell the benefits of them giving you their details, from being able to book classes, getting reminders, news, and personalised messages. Don't use words like offers, deals, referrals, prize draws or anything else that sounds like you're going to be marketing to them. [OK, so you might send some of these messages, but that's not going to encourage members to let you have their details]

The best place to collect email and mobile number is as members join, or even before, when they show an interest. Online sign-up is great for this, as you must have a correct email to get the join confirmation, and perhaps a PIN to collect your membership card. Get people who are joining in-club to use the same online joining process on a terminal, but stay with them and talk them through the process if you can.

Back-up the talk of convincing members to give their details with a well worded opt-in statement. This is in support of the verbal pitch, not a substitute; you need to talk to members, sell the benefits, earn trust, and refer to the policy if needed.

If you're serious about using email to interact more with your members, check how many good emails you have versus blank, invalid or bounced emails, and add a flag to those members for reception to talk to them next time they visit. You could also build a mailshot (sms or post) of members with blank/invalid/bounced emails. Include those who haven't opened an email for more than 6 months and ask for an updated address, remembering to sell them the benefits and continue to earn their trust.

On opt-out 

Don't openly offer opt-out for a new member, if you do, you're reducing the communication options you have with your members, and reducing the chance of them staying members for longer. It's in their interest to opt-in!
If someone asks to opt-out of a certain channel, check their reasons, see if you can persuade them that the benefits outweigh their concerns. Tell them that they can opt out directly from any communication (a legal requirement). Ultimately, if someone wants to opt-out, check (or uncheck) that box, but it’s best to keep their email details in your database for future reference, such as a billing enquiry.
Don't change the member's email to, unless your CRM database doesn't handle email opt-out (in which case you should consider changing your CRM system).

No comments: