A good rule of thumb for new member recruitment in the Liberal Democrats has always been that for every two new members recruited, only one will renew one year on. After the Cleggmania 2010 mini-surge in new members, over half were lost one year on although more recently the renewal rate for new members was more like two in three rather than one in two.
Even so, with the party’s poll ratings currently lower than when those surge member were due to rejoin and mostly didn’t, there’s been a big question mark over how many of the post-2015 election surge in members the party would manage to keep.
Well the figures for the key third quarter of 2016 are looking very good. There were 33,500 party members due to renew in this quarter – a huge number given that, to give it some context, there were 61,598 members at the start of this year. What’s more, of those, around 20,000 were coming up to their first renewal.
The good news: less than 6,800 are left to renew before the end of September. More than four in five have already renewed.
That’s due in no small measure to Al Ghaff and the membership team at HQ who have secured the bulk of these renewals directly. Local party activity is also key to reaching those who HQ’s efforts don’t immediately sweep up, especially where the party does not have a working email or phone number in the membership records.
Inviting lapsing members to local social and campaigning events, calling on them in person and encouraging them to switch to the convenience of direct debit are all good ways to move that 80% even higher. The record in recent times has been 91%. Here’s hoping… (or rather, here’s to lots of local party activity).
Note: if you or someone you know has a query over sorting out a membership renewal, a new member not having received a welcome pack etc., the best contact is firstname.lastname@example.org.