The Changing Face of Association Membership

by Kay Cavender 17. November 2011 10:19

In 2007, ASAE conducted a survey to identify how individuals determine value of an association and why they choose to belong. The report, “The Decision to Join,” found members under age 30 were significantly underrepresented, at just 8.3%. In comparison, the recently completed MemberSuite survey found a strong representation of respondents aged 24 to 34 who are members of an association. Survey respondents represented a fairly equal representation among the age groups for members and non-members alike.

The MemberSuite survey found a significant difference in education levels between those who are members of an association and those who are not. Associations appear to attract more college-educated individuals. Seven out of 10 association members have a bachelor’s degree or higher, compared with 42% of those who are not members of an association.

In terms of tenure with an association, the majority of survey respondents (44%) have been a member for more than 6 years, but only 9% have joined within the last year, possibly indicating associations are doing better at retaining members than at recruiting them.

Members with longer tenure in an association tend to have more advanced education. More than 7 out of 10 members (72%) who have been with an association more than 6 years have a bachelor’s degree or greater. Only about half (49%) of respondents who have been members of an association for less than a year have that level of education.

To learn more about the findings from this comprehensive survey, download the white paper “How to Communicate” by clicking here.


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