Step 2 of 10 to engage your membership with email
Last week we discussed the importance of gathering your membership’s email addresses. This week our focus is on the importance of consistent delivery of recurring emails (such as the General Manager’s “Weekly Update”).
Once members begin receiving your recurring emails they will read them – but only as long as they are dependable sources of valuable information.
Why is consistency important? Take for example the weekend dining specials mailing: when a member receives these emails, how will they react?
- At first they will read the emails out of curiosity. This will boost dining activity simply because members are reminded to consider the club for dinner.
- Then members will grow comfortable with these emails and may discontinue reading them. This is not a failure. Most members will not read about the specials if there is no chance they will eat at the club that weekend (so don’t try to send out important news mixed in with the specials!). Members will not read these mailings any more than they would open the yellow pages to read them before they want to buy something.
- Then the week will come when a member is trying to decide where to dine and they remember to go look up the club specials for the weekend. At that point the club has an opportunity to increase non-dues revenue depending on how appealing the pictures in the email are and the quality of the description and the art work (more on this in a later article). The club earned the member’s attention because the member knew the information would be there when it was needed: consistency resulted in valuable communication.
- Suppose the member had gone to look for the email, only to find there was no email that week? Or suppose the email was sent but contained other information but no weekend specials? Chances are good the member would be a little irritated and would have dinner somewhere else. Most likely they would never open another weekend special mailing again.
If you are going to start a recurring email such as the “Weekly Golf News,” the best approach is to carefully organize so that you can deliver the email, consistently, at a certain time of day on a particular day of the week, without fail. No excuses such as “Julie was sick” or “John was on vacation” or “we were busy with the tournament”. It helps to have an email system that can trigger a mailing at a certain time on a certain day so you can get the emails done ahead of schedule, but even more important is management’s insistence that that no recurring email will be launched until the staff has a plan in place that will ensure consistent delivery, not for a few weeks, but for years to come. It’s easy to be consistent if you plan to be consistent.
Next week’s subject is “Make Staff Come Alive.” We will cover ways to use email to introduce the personalities of the GM, the Chef, the Pro, the Wine Steward, etc. so that members feel they are part of a friendly family .