Posted By Leah Baker

YTheyJoin identifies nine types of association members based on their motivations for joining and this article discusses one of them, Mailboxers™. Why do they join? What makes them tick? How should you communicate with them effectively?


Mailboxers lack time or resources to interact in person with your assn but they value what they receive through the mail or computer. This may be your magazine, journal, newsletter, directory, books or tapes, web site, list serves, brochures, etc. They may also appreciate YouTube, Facebook or Twitter.


Mailboxers feel that the info they receive this way is good enough to justify continued membership. Letters or appeals to Mailboxers should include a recognition that “they are busy and that you can provide them with a unique and concise overview of information.”


Our research found that Mailboxers don't expect articles directly related to their interests in every issue of your magazine. Therefore, we recommend sending them an “Annual Index” of articles from the previous year to remind them that their needs are being met. And consider sending them a preview of articles for the upcoming year. They also like short versions of each article that is published in your magazine or journal.


Mailboxers are an excellent group for a list serve or other ways of networking on the Internet because it takes little time and strengthens the bonds to the association. Good ways to communicate with Mailboxers also include wikis, text messages, fast-track access to experts, distance learning, and short online surveys during the year to get feedback on topics that may arise.


A note of caution - the nature of the Mailbox relationship can be tenuous and it is important to target these members with something extra during the year. This can be extra communications, a discount coupon for a CD, a phone call, or a unique renewal letter highlighting how you met their needs during the past year.


To learn more about YTheyJoin, the original member-segmentation and target-marketing program, please visit You can also call 703-772-5263 or e-mail

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Leah Baker
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