How to Leverage a Photo Challenge to Increase Member Engagement

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As a non-profit, membership engagement is crucial for your organization’s longevity. 

Membership engagement is your members’ willingness to be involved in your organization’s activities and contribute their time and money. If you want people to engage with your organization, you need to make it easy for them. 

An easy and effective way to boost member engagement and get people excited about your organization’s community is hosting a photo challenge. A photo challenge is a fun way to get members involved in the community and to encourage them to interact with each other. It can also be used as a tool to bring in new members.

In this article, we’ll show you how to leverage a photo challenge to increase member engagement in your community.

What is a Photo Challenge ?

A photo challenge is a type of challenge that allows your members to submit photos that follow a particular theme, and then vote on their favourites. A theme could include running a challenge that targets female founders or executives around International Women’s Day. Or, you could encourage submissions from your volunteers to spotlight them during National Volunteers Week. Whatever would resonate most with your community, your organization can use a photo challenge to encourage engagement and discussion within your community, and get access to free media that can later be repurposed! 

How Can Photo Challenges Increase Member Engagement?

In a recent photo challenge we ran for one of our clients, for a typically low-engagement membership on social media, the challenge acquired 44 quality entries and received 190 votes. The client also had a 68% increase in page views and an average engagement of 14% (where a very good rate is between 1-5%). The stats speak for themselves!

But how do you do it right?

How to Run a Photo Challenge

#1 Make it Fun & Relevant

Your members will be more likely to participate if they feel like they’re having fun while they do it and perceive it as relevant to the organization. Try to incorporate a theme that relates directly to your industry or mission in the challenge itself. For instance, your organization may target psychotherapists as members. Launching a photo challenge during Mental Health Awareness Month that encourages members to share why mental health is important to them would be a fun and relevant challenge that would drive meaningful interactions amongst them.  

#2 Create a Form

To streamline the photo submission process, we recommend using Google Forms to house the submissions to help you stay organized.

#3 Decide What You’re Offering as a Prize

The next step is to decide what prize you will offer to the winner(s) of your challenge. It’s important that the prize be something that will excite people and make them want to participate. Whether it be a gift card to Starbucks or a discount on their next month’s membership, an incentive can make your members feel invested in this challenge. 

#4 Determine Clear Expectations for Participants

Don’t leave things up in the air! Make sure that everyone knows exactly what they need to do in order to participate in the challenge, including any rules or restrictions on what types of photos are allowed (if any). Communicate how long the challenge will run for, how many photos can be submitted per category, what the voting process will entail, how photos will be used in future marketing collateral, etc. 

#5 Spread the Word

Announce the challenge on social media, website, newsletters, and other communication channels. Make sure you communicate the expectations in your communication efforts!

So there you have it! You’ve learned how to run a successful photo challenge, and hopefully you’ve been inspired to do so.

You can take your member engagement to the next level by using this technique. And at the end of the challenge, you will have tons of (free) photos to use in future marketing collateral! 

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