How frequently do we need to contact association event prospects?

The question of marketing/advertising frequency has been well studied, but ironically, the answer for your association event is still “it depends.”

In general, the required frequency of marketing message for your association convention or meeting is probably greater than you might expect. Just about the time you’re sick and tired of seeing your marketing materials is also just about the same time that your association’s prospects are finally starting to remember seeing your materials once.

While that might seem counterintuitive, consider that you probably have your association’s materials in your office or on your desk – perhaps even in your screensaver. In contrast, your association’s prospects have either put your material in their stack of things to read or read it (hopefully hanging on every word, immediately responding to your compelling offer) and either filed it or tossed it.

If you’re looking for an easy answer, associations often find that they need to repeat their message 6-8 times before their target audience responds at historical levels. This doesn’t mean that they receive the same brochure 8 times. Instead, they may receive a mix of brochures, letters, emails, phone calls, etc.

Keep in mind that 6-8 times is merely an average. Obviously, some people respond the first time your association contacts them. Others might need 12 contacts before they finally get around to registering for your association event.

Your association would find it useful to track how many times a prospect is contacted before registering for the convention. As you gather that data over time, you may be able to segment the registrants with other factors such as organization type or size, position, etc. to finely tune how/how often you deliver your association marketing message. It takes work, but if done correctly, you may be able to improve your association event attendance while reducing your association marketing costs.

How many times does your association hit its target audience with the message about your association convention or meeting? Have you experimented with different frequencies?

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