There are a number of ways to strengthen your relationship with your affinity partners. Excellent service and strong partner financial gains delivered through your services are certainly critical for sustaining a long-term relationship. However, in the increasingly competitive affinity partner marketing world, this is just not enough.
You should also be exploring value-add services you can provide your partners. Typically, once the services described below are instituted, the cost of the services are minimal compared to the value provided. These value-add services not only provide tangible benefits to the member services organization, they are also very useful to your marketing team as well.
Following is a list of important affinity value-add services with a brief explanation:
- Membership surveys: With today’s SaaS and cloud-based survey capabilities, surveys can be quickly and effectively deployed using a variety of tools. Member organizations exist to serve their membership community, and it is useful for them to survey their membership on important or pressing issues. Using email and online tools for the survey, results can be tabulated and reported within a few days. As the group’s membership is being contacted with direct marketing efforts, including an invitation to complete an online survey should take minimal effort and should not increase costs or reduce results.
- Member list hygiene: In order to include the member list in direct marketing efforts, address hygiene of the list must be performed. This service would simply return to the member organization the list with the corrections and identification on those members that could not be mailed. This allows the organization to properly maintain their member listing with more accurate information.
- Profiling affinity membership: By performing a match of the participating member listings to a national consumer database with demographic and interest indications, you can deliver an incredible amount of insight to your partner about their own members. These profiles have proven to be very valuable to a number of our clients’ member organizations as part of our analytic scoring efforts.
- Custom segmentation report using member user data: When a member organization is able to provide us with data about a member’s level of relationship, or the services received through their membership, we can easily enhance the profiles described above to include information about best customers and even customer lifetime value. This is very useful to a member organization and allows them to fine-tune the services they are providing to their membership.
- Affinity membership benchmarked to peer groups: We would typically classify or segment affinity organizations. As stated above, we routinely match membership listings to a national database. This allows us to prepare comparative data on demographic, geographic and interest characteristics. Member organizations are always interested in how they compare to the peer group.
These are just a few examples of some value-add services that we, at SIGMA, have successfully served up to our affinity-marketing clients. Hopefully it adds some value to your affinity marketing efforts with some suggestions for improving your strategy.