Attract, Engage, Retain - 3 Tips to Grow Your Legal Association

Looking to expand your legal association and its influence? Learn the 3 tips to grow a successful association by attracting, engaging, and retaining members.

A group of lawyers meeting at a legal association get-together.

In the fast-paced, high-pressure world of law, legal associations are vital to supporting collaboration and growth in the legal field. The advocacy, networking, and information you bring to your members help to advance their careers. Growing your association offers more opportunities to shape the practice of law and empower lawyers on their journey.

Are you looking to grow your association and expand its influence but need a hand figuring out where to start? We’ve got you covered. Here are 3 tips to grow a successful legal association and attract, engage, and retain members.

1. Meaningful Content

One of the top ways to attract, engage, and retain members is through providing meaningful content. When creating (or expanding) content, focus on topics related to your association’s mission. As you share more relevant information, the legal community will see you as an authority, bolstering interest in joining.

Legal association content comes in many forms, and we suggest you experiment with the full toolkit (resources permitting). The easiest to implement is written content, including articles and blogs. Look to newsletters, forums, and your website to distribute this content. In addition to written content, webinars, video blogs, and online video meetings are perfect for engaging your audience, especially the more tech-savvy members.

Tip: Have a mix of public and member-exclusive content to attract new members while giving them a reason to join and get more.

The gold standard for legal association content is educational, especially if the member earns CLEs (Continuing Legal Education) from attending. One of the top reasons lawyers join an association is to access educational resources to meet their CLE requirements. Offering classes is key to attracting, engaging, and retaining members. You will need to receive accreditation for your course to count as CLE credit, and this process can be involved depending on the state. (Make sure to check with your state organization for steps.)

Variety is not only the spice of life–it’s a winning way to not bore your members. When planning, don’t stick with just one topic; mix it up. Your goal is to keep members coming back for more. If everything you release is exactly the same, you’ll see your membership stale and drop off. Keep your ideas fresh, offer a rotating list of topics, have different speakers at events, and your members will be more engaged and looking forward to your next content drop.

Tip: Plan ahead. A content calendar is a great way to avoid repeating the same content over and over again.

2. Strong Community

Lawyering is lonely. It’s one of the hardest-hit professions for mental health, and lawyers look to legal associations as a way to connect and collaborate. Fostering a strong community is crucial for a successful legal association. Take every opportunity you can to ensure a healthy, robust community.

First and foremost, have an on-the-go way for your members to stay connected. You can utilize a forum, emails, Listservs, social media pages (such as a Facebook Group), or through Metwork (but more on that later). However you choose to keep your members connected, be sure to start conversations, have a thoughtful moderation policy, and support positive, beneficial discussions. Don’t wait for your members to take it upon themselves.

Tip: While it’s important to experiment with many different avenues of communication, it’s best to decide on one that offers the most flexibility for your members, including the choice of how they receive their messages.

Group discussions go a long way to growing a successful association, but you can take it further by facilitating mentorship amongst your members. Mentorship is crucial to advance a legal career and push the field forward. Finding a good mentor or mentee can take time. Foster positive relationships and help make connections for others to create a truly collaborative space for your members.

Lastly, creating a strong community doesn’t mean every get-together is 100% legal-focused. Lawyers join associations for more than just knowledge or opportunities; they join for the camaraderie. Host events where your members can come together and just have fun. Remember, we all need levity, especially in a high-pressure and stressful field. It’s good to encourage your members to have fun.

Tip: Have a variety of online and in-person events to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to join, regardless of location, schedules, and other logistical factors.

3. Stay Up-to-date

Each year, the legal field sees more and more Millennials and Gen Z joining the community. On average, law students are 27 when they graduate. Offering up-to-date technology is one of the best ways to open your doors to the next generation of lawyers. 

At recent conferences, we had the opportunity to gain feedback on the legal field from younger lawyers. Frustrations with outdated technology arose time and time again, especially when discussing Listservs. Lawyers who grew up with the internet and social media expect better solutions to stay connected, and offering those solutions is one of the best ways to attract new, youthful members that will fuel your association into the future. 

Let Metwork do the heavy lifting for you. As a first-of-its-kind legal networking platform, we offer tools specifically designed to manage your association, grow your membership, and engage your current members.

What you can expect from Metwork:

  • Automatically find new members to recruit that meet your association criteria.
  • Metlist: a better solution to replace forums, listservs, or social media groups.
  • Easily collect member dues, manage events (including ticket sales), and create an association store without leaving Metwork.
  • Stay connected by posting articles, events, videos, and more directly to your association’s Metwork page.
  • Members will be able to join teams and be an advocate for your association.

Tip: Metwork allows you to engage members of all generations with options to keep messages and updates within the platform or to get notifications via email, letting your members choose the best way to stay connected.

Regardless of how they get their messages, every avenue is kept up-to-date, reducing overlap and ensuring no one is left out. 

Give your legal association the best chance to succeed by following these three tips to attract, engage, and retain members.

Book a demo today to discover how Metwork can help your association flourish.