When implementing a new Association Learning Management System, or upgrading your existing system, one of the top worries is “How will we get our members and new learners to use the new system?”.
Whether considering implementing a Learning Management System for the first time, or changing over from an existing system, one of the first things that should be discussed is how you are going to market it to your members and non-members alike to ensure a successful adoption. The better the plan the better chances for success!
Why do we need to market our Association Learning Management System?
Your Association has made a significant investment in a new learning management system to benefit professionals in your sector who wish to up-skill and extend their professional knowledge. The Learning Management System will be an invaluable tool in enabling your membership to achieve continuing professional development.
Marketing your Association LMS will:
- Inform members about the value of the new eLearning system and how to access it;
- Ensure increased adoption of the new system, to streamline administration of your eLearning programs;
- Enable your association to create new revenue streams by offering courses at different pricing tiers for members and non-members
- Provide insight into the effectiveness of different communication channels and promotional strategies for reaching out to your members.
How to ensure your Association LMS is Top-of-Mind
Marketing your Association LMS does not have to be a complex process. It can be as simple as sending out teaser emails to your members on a regular basis well before the launch, at launch time, and whenever new content is added. The more you get the word out the more chances you have of members using the system. Consider all the places that members might see your message, such as your association website, blog, newsletter, and social media profiles; then tailor your announcement to suit each platform. Consider using images to promote the announcement on social media, launching a pop-up notification when members attempt to login to the member’s area on your website, or including a postcard insert with their hard-copy of your newsletter.
It is just as important to continue to market your Association Learning Management System to members and non-members after your launch. Members need to know about updated training, new training offerings, etc. on a regular basis. The more you let members know what useful and interesting online learning resources you have, the more chances they will use and benefit from your LMS. The marketing term here would be keeping your LMS “top of mind”, to ensure that members think of your Learning Management System resources first to meet their needs.
If you are considering a new Association Learning Management System make sure to look for an LMS that can automatically send out notifications to members about new training, training reminders, certification expirations, and special offerings. If you are considering an LMS with e-commerce capabilities make sure there are options to offer discounts on eLearning bundles, coupons, tokens, and early-bird special offers. All of these can help in marketing your Association Learning Management System and making your eLearning offering attractive to learners. Check out our 8 quick tips to boost eLearning revenue for ideas.
Another area to look at is social media. It is an inexpensive way to get the word out so make sure your Association LMS has the proper capabilities to support social media applications such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and more. Using social media can really increase engagement and adoption of your Learning Management System in a less formal and more accessible way to members and non-members alike. Consider creating a hashtag to promote awareness of your courses, or offering a discount on the next course purchased if your learners promote their participation or post a course review on social media channels.
Using Marketing to Improve Learning Management
Lastly, let's not forget one of the most important tenets of modern marketing: Always be Measuring!
Your Association LMS can help you to measure the success of your marketing campaigns and the attractiveness of your elearning offering. By using different promotional codes or discounts for different marketing channels (newsletter, website, social media) in combination with the e-commerce capabilities of your Learning Management System, you can track how many people sign up for courses from each channel. This allows you to see which methods of communication were most successful in reaching your membership, or non-members to promote your Learning Management System.
However, sometimes even the most attractive promotion or discount cannot sell a boring or unpopular eLearning course. By reviewing which courses are most popular to your members and new learners, you will be able to measure the success of your eLearning offering and adapt it to suit the needs of learners. Offer a popular program more often, or update the content of an unpopular course. Your marketing strategies, combined with the ease of management offered by your Association Learning Management System, will give you insight into how to both increase your revenue and add value for your learners.
Marketing your Association LMS is a necessity but with a little up front planning and a capable Learning Management System it shouldn’t be difficult to accomplish. Remember, good marketing and relevant content equals success!
To learn one way the TopClass LMS integrated e-commerce engine can support promotion of your Association LMS and course catalog to members, check out our blog post: "Using an LMS to drive cross-selling and up-selling strategy".