Membership Satisfaction Compared to Membership Loyalty: A Real Life Example


Many traditional surveys evaluate member satisfaction with an organization. But does satisfaction give a clear picture of what members really feel and want?

We wanted to find out! So in a recent membership survey, we asked both satisfaction and loyalty questions. These questions measure members’ feelings about the organization, their likelihood to renew membership and their willingness to recommend membership to others.

The findings comparing these two techniques were enlightening.

The good news is that we found that membership satisfaction ran at 90.8%.

However, we saw a much more diverse picture using our loyalty questions. Based on these questions we found:

  • 57% of members could be categorized as “Advocates”: They express positive relationship feelings toward the organization, indicating an intention to remain a member and a willingness to recommend membership to others.

  • 2% of members could be categorized as “Reluctant”: They express positive feelings toward the organization, but are hesitant to commit to future membership or recommending others.

  • 18% of members could be categorized as “At Risk”: They express negative feelings toward the organization, but plan to remain a member. This segment often feels trapped in a membership with few or no alternatives.

  • 23% of member could be categorized as “Detractors”: They express negative feelings toward the organization, indicating little intention to renew or refer others.

By measuring loyalty instead of satisfaction with this organization, a membership picture comes into focus that lends itself to action. This is especially true as each loyalty category is cross tabulated by job titles, membership tenure, company type, and other key demographics.

Do you have a meaningful measure of membership loyalty for your organization?

4 comments:

Annaliese said...

Thank you for this post - I think we forget to re-assess our surveys and design questions that will give us deeper understanding of our members AND clear issues to address with them. Can you share any examples of these "loyalty" questions? Or describe how "satisfaction" questions differ from "loyalty" questions?

Tony Rossell said...

Annaliese -- Thanks for the question. Two loyalty questions are plans to renewa and willingness to recommend. The additional questions -- usually 6 of them -- are customized for the specific organizaation for whom we are doing the research. Tony

Lindy Dreyer said...

Very smart. While I'm uncertain how valid the Net Promoter Score is as a metric, I like the thinking behind it--subtract your detractors from your promoters and get an idea of how healthy your organization really is.

The loyalty questions are the big picture.

BTW, it would be great to be able to baseline Net Promoter Scores across associations. (hint, hint)

Tony Rossell said...

Lindy -- Thanks for the comment. Here is what my researcher shared with as her view of NPS. She said, "Fred Reichheld’s Net Promoter Score (NPS) is based on one question only: How likely are you to recommend company XYZ. My belief is that our measurement as it stands has more depth and meaning than the NPS." I like your concept of taking advocates and subtracting detractors and coming up with a socre. We will take a look at doing that. Tony