This guest post was contributed by Regpack.
As COVID-19 continues to push people to stay indoors and work from home, there is an increased need for online experiences and virtual opportunities. For associations, this can seem like a huge wrench in your plans. You’re likely going to have to cancel that large conference and postpone any in-person meetings you have planned.
However, being frustrated won’t do you much good. With the rise of technology and the internet, there are tools your association can still take advantage of to provide a similar and convenient solution to the live experiences you offer. For instance, associations often offer learning opportunities to members to help them receive official accreditations and further their careers.
Consider investing in a Learning Management System (LMS), where your association can offer a collection of online courses as well. As everyone is encouraged to stay indoors, it makes sense to start prioritizing your LMS and work on increasing its attendance. Members can complete official online courses from the comforts of their own home and on their own schedule too.
We at Regpack often help organizations increase online course registrations and wrote this guide to offer some key tips for associations. Equip yourself with the right tools and software and ensure that you have the following capabilities:
Ready to start learning how to get your members excited for your association’s online courses? Let’s get started!
1. Streamlined registration process
It’s likely that your members are spending more time online now than ever before. That’s why it’s so crucial that your online course registration process is streamlined and intuitive to use.
Often, registration forms are the first place that people lost interest. Either your form has too many questions, or the questions take too long to answer, and people close the window and move on to something else more immediately fulfilling.
There are a couple of key features your online courses registration tool should have in order to make the process as quick and easy as possible. For instance:
- Ensure that your online registration is embedded in your association’s main website. Members might be a little sketched out if they’re sent to another window to fill out their details. Keep them on your main website for a streamlined experience.
- Brand the form to your association. One association website best practice is to consistently keep up branding throughout your website. This not only improves the user experience but also helps members associate your online courses as an integral part of your association experience.
- Personalize the registration process. Some tools have conditional logic abilities that react to registrant actions and answers. For example, if a member chooses to also register for multiple courses at once, conditional logic will prompt the registration form to add the necessary fields.
- Provide additional instructions if necessary. If multiple sessions require some sort of video component with different Zoom links, your tool should recognize and automatically incorporate the right link in relevant emails and calendar invites when someone registers.
The registration process is an important component of your online courses and is necessary if you’re adding an LMS to your association software. Members will appreciate the extra effort and you’ll likely also see an increase in registration completions.
2. Discounts and other perks
To jump-start your online course registration, a good idea is to offer discounts or early-bird registration to your most active association members.
Take a look at your current members and determine the ones who are most likely to sign up for your online courses. This would include those who’ve used your LMS in the past as well as those who attended many of your events.
As we practice safe social distancing, a good idea is to consider offering discounts to those who registered for upcoming events or conferences that you had to cancel. Let them know of another experience they can sign up for!
Make sure your online course registration can automatically trigger and apply discounts depending on the applicant. You can even create different discount codes for different members. Taking a tip from this Fonteva article, consider segmenting your members based on why you’re sending them a discount (ie. they took previous online courses, they had an event ticket that got canceled, etc.) This way, you can track how often a code was used to easily track which marketing approach worked best.
3. Secure payment processing
With so much uncertainty in the world at the moment, it’s important that you make sure members feel safe every step of the registration process. When you utilize an integrated payment processor within your online course registration tool, you’ll be sure to increase course sign-ups as well as boost revenue.
Your members will appreciate you taking the steps to make sure their financial data is safe. Your payment tool can also automate a payment invoice email to each of the registrants breaking down the registration.
To further increase convenience and streamline the process, offer options like payment plans and auto-billing to help ease the costs. This isn’t the most economically stable time in history so your members might take advantage of this feature often.
Don’t lose out on more students for your online courses during the very last step of the registration process! Secure your members’ payments with a dedicated tool.
4. Data analysis
A capable LMS offers a variety of courses to meet your members’ needs, but it’s still up to you to determine what that exactly entails. The best way to ensure you consistently improve the opportunities you offer is to look at your member data.
As you offer more and more online courses, your online course registration tool should be collecting and storing all of that data. This includes data on members who signed up, to what courses were most popular, to how that member found out about the course. Make sure your software can also create reports using that data. This way, you can:
- Visualize trends and find the information you need with customized and saved reporting tools. Understand which marketing strategy worked best and use that as you’re developing your next one!
- Produce statistics and export the findings with ease. Maybe you’ll find that more and more registrants are taking advantage of payment plans to help with their finances. You can use this to determine the pricing of your future courses or if you want to offer more discounts.
- Filter your registrants by any data point to find commonalities. Understand any aspect of your project with a click of a button, like what are the common age groups signing up.
Data is an important component of any association process and your LMS isn’t any different. Increase your online course registration by taking steps that you know are backed by data.
Focusing on online course registrations is crucial for your association, especially now. Streamline the registration process and effectively engage your members with the right digital opportunities! Good luck.
About the Author:
Asaf Darash, Founder and CEO of Regpack, has extensive experience as an entrepreneur and investor. Asaf has built 3 successful companies to date, all with an exit plan or that have stayed in profitability and are still functional. Asaf specializes in product development for the web, team building and in bringing a company from concept to an actualized unit that is profitable.”