How to introduce digital membership cards to your organisation

Read our step-by-step guide on how to plan the implementation of digital cards into your organisation


If you’re still using paper or plastic membership cards, then switching to the online equivalent can seem like a big step. However, it is a change that is worth giving some serious consideration to, as introducing digital membership cards to your organisation can enhance user experience, improve efficiency, and contribute to a more environmentally friendly approach. In this blog we look at how to make the implementation process as straightforward as possible.

Assess the Need

The first step is to identify the reasons for introducing digital membership cards. This could include cost savings, environmental considerations, improved member engagement, and enhanced convenience. Each organisation is different and writing these objectives down will be a great help when it comes to selecting the best system for your needs.

Choose a Platform

There are lots of different options on the market so it is important to do your research and consider all the options. You will need a secure and user-friendly platform for hosting our digital membership cards and ideally one that will integrate with your current systems. Writing a brief can help you to communicate your requirements succinctly with potential partners.

Develop a Digital Strategy

It is a good idea to outline a comprehensive strategy for the transition to digital. Define goals, timelines, and key performance indicators (KPIs). Consider how digital membership cards fit into your overall organisational objectives and wider business plan. It may be that other systems can be digitised at the same time so that you can enjoy even more time and cost savings.

Communicate with Members

As soon as you have your plan in place it is important to clearly communicate how the transition to digital membership cards will work to your members. Be mindful that some members may be resistant to change and will be cautious about the move to digital. Highlight the benefits, such as instant access, cost savings, and any exclusive features that come with the digital format.

Provide Training and Support

Although digital cards are commonplace these days, there is still  a need to ensure that members know how to access and use their digital membership cards. If possible, provide training materials, tutorials, or support channels to assist with any issues or questions. Utilise as many communication methods as you can in order to get the message across to all groups of members.

Ensure Security and Privacy

One of the main worries people have about online systems is the potential for personal data leaks. Implementing robust security measures to protect member data will alleviate concerns and enable you to reassure members who are worried about the digital transition. If the digital membership cards contain personal information, prioritise encryption, authentication, and other security features. Remember to also ensure compliance with data protection regulations and any other legal considerations related to digital cards.

Integration with Existing Systems

When considering potential platforms, one of the key considerations should be the ability to integrate the digital membership card system with your existing databases and management systems. This will ensure a seamless transition and facilitate easy management of memberships going forward.

Offer Incentives

If you feel there may be some reluctance amongst your membership body, you can encourage adoption by offering incentives for members who make the switch. This could include exclusive content, discounts, or other perks accessible only through the digital membership card. Building this into your plan up front will make sure you pave the way for a smooth transition.

Test and Gather Feedback

Many organisations find that conducting a pilot programme or soft launch with a small group of members pays dividends when implementing a digital platform. This enables any plans to be stress tested and teething problems ironed out before rolling the scheme out to the full membership cohort. It will also allow you to gather feedback from members and identify issues you may not have considered so improvements can be made.

Marketing Campaign

The incorporation of digital membership cards into your offering can be a major plus point for potential members. So make sure you plan a marketing campaign to promote your new scheme and communicate the benefits. Utilise various channels, including email, social media, and your organisation's website, to create awareness.

Monitor and Optimise

Following the introduction of an online system it is important to continuously monitor adoption rates and usage patterns. Use analytics to track the success of the digital membership card program and make adjustments based on member feedback and evolving needs.

Environmental Messaging

Highlight the environmental benefits of going digital in your communications. Emphasise the reduction of paper waste and your organisation's commitment to sustainability. These factors can be a big advantage when listing the benefits of membership with your organisation and should be built into any future marketing campaigns.

Celebrate Milestones

The benefits of digital membership cards don’t just stop once you have gone live and successfully launched. Remember to celebrate milestones in the adoption of the new digital system and reward members and staff who actively support the transition. This will ensure the continued success of your programme for many years to come.

By carefully planning and executing these steps, you can successfully introduce digital membership cards to your organisation, providing a more modern and efficient experience for your members. If you would like some expert help and advice to guide you through the process then get in touch with our team today.

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