Build a Relationship
Its award-winning Arthritis Today magazine is the anchor benefit of its membership program. Launched in the 1980s as a step to increase public outreach, the national magazine is designed to help people with arthritis live better lives. For a minimum donation of $20, donors can join the Arthritis Foundation and receive a yearly subscription to the bimonthly magazine, which provides readers with tips and techniques on living with arthritis, as well as the latest news on research and treatment. Member benefits also include its Drug Guide, membership card, member discounts on all Foundation books and videos, access to the Arthritis Specialists Referral List, research updates and invitations to events and activities.
"A membership program is uncommon for a health-related charity," admits Moore, who explains that most health-related charities simply focus on a donor relationship instead of developing a membership program. The Arthritis Foundation, however, has the magazine, which is "a perfect benefit for individuals with or concerned about arthritis and wanting to become a member of the organization," Moore adds. "We want to provide a value to the individual. We feel that these are the best relationships we can build."
Because the membership program works so well for the Foundation, Moore says it "would like to grow the value of the membership program … give it more weight, so we can upgrade people faster."
The Foundation has made this goal a priority and recently created a membership task force comprised of volunteers, industry professionals, and national and local Foundation employees who will review the history of its direct response program. Moore, who is the staff lead for the task force, says it will "decide who we want to impact and what they need from us." The Foundation will then meet those needs using its internal resources or by partnering with outside organizations.