Membership + Marketing

Member Engagement: Crafting an Effective Scoring Model for Your Association

Member Engagement: Crafting an Effective Scoring Model for Your Association

Every member comes to your association for a reason. Whether they are drawn to your mission, enticed by your educational offerings, or want to network with like-minded individuals – it’s no secret that every member is different, and they all have unique reasons for joining. 

They have unique reasons for renewing their membership, too. As much as we want them to, not every member engages with every aspect of your organization. But, it’s still important to have a 360 view of each member’s level of engagement so you’re able to take action and dive into the reasons they stay, and what they engage with most.  

Member Engagement scoring models have emerged as a powerful tool to gauge connection, providing insights that can drive strategic decisions and amplify member interactions – but it’s essential to think it through before implementing a scoring method. 

Engagement is different for each association – it's like a personalized playlist of what gets members excited. 

For some, it's all about that annual event – the highlight of the year that members look forward to most. Other associations thrive on course registrations, learning, and growing together. Or, they place the most value on who renews and how quickly. Maybe historically those who participate in a committee are the most engaged. Or, you’re a trade organization that wants to know which of its organizational members purchase the most sponsorship and exhibiting opportunities. 

The bottom line, engagement is unique to each association. And there's no one-size-fits-all rulebook. For most, it’s a combination of a lot of factors! An intuitive and truly meaningful member engagement feature will allow your association to weigh and score which activities mean the most to you. 

Why have a member engagement model? 


Member engagement scoring is widely talked about throughout the association world. It makes sense, right? Your members are the lifeblood of your organization, it’s only fair to want to have a quantifiable number on how ‘engaged’ they are with you. 

Before coming up with a member engagement score model though, it’s essential to think ahead about how you will use the data. Too many times, member engagement models are implemented as a flashy way to show your board how engaged your members are. But oftentimes associations aren’t sure how to use the data once they receive it. 

What your member engagement data can be used for:

  • Segmentation with Insight: Divides members into segments like super-engaged, engaged, previously engaged but not anymore, and those at risk of leaving. This segmentation unveils opportunities to tailor interactions and address churn risks.
  • Tailored Marketing Campaigns: Armed with member engagement data, you can craft personalized campaigns that resonate with each member segment. This precision enhances the chances of member participation.
  • Data-Driven Board Reporting: Board members crave measurable insights. A robust scoring model delivers quantifiable engagement metrics, providing an accurate representation of member interactions.
  • Strategic Advocacy: Identify the members most likely to advocate for your association. Reach out to them to amplify your association's reach and influence.

Defining Member Engagement: The First Step


Before diving into scoring models, it's imperative to align your team's vision with what member engagement means to your association. Every association has its unique mix of activities that mirror engagement.

Before ever implementing an engagement scoring model, we recommend you get your team together to brainstorm what it should look like. 

Here's how you can shape your model:

  1. Convene Your Experts: Gather a diverse team of internal subject matter experts, including those who frequently interact with members and work behind the scenes on member initiatives. Their insights will be invaluable in recognizing meaningful engagement activities.
  2. Identify Engagement Activities: Brainstorm and compile a comprehensive list of member activities that reflect engagement. Group similar activities and explore the possibility of assigning broader categories.
  3. Assign Weights and Prioritize: Align engagement activities with your association's goals. Assign weights to each activity based on its significance in the member journey. Totaling up to 100 ensures a clear historical view. 


A great way to come to a consensus on which activities mean the most to your association is to have everything total up to 100. Plus, this gives a complete picture of engagement over time, since it will always add up to 100 – it’s easier to track the historical score of a member since the highest total has always been and will always be 100.

With a flexible technology partner, you’ll be able to make changes over time as your organizational goals shift – but it’s really important to have a consensus of what version 1 looks like ahead of starting.  

A well-crafted member engagement scoring model shouldn’t just be a buzzword – it empowers associations to harness data-driven insights, foster member loyalty, and steer strategic decisions. 

Learn more about Rhythm's Member Engagement Scoring Tool

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