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Focusing on young professionals boosts membership at AOA

To boost membership numbers, optometrists association targeted young professionals and gave affiliates tools for the job

Brauns, Hymes
Renee Brauns and John Hymes.

Sept. 27, 2019
By Walt Williams

The American Optometric Association has scored early success in an effort initiated three years ago to hike both member recruitment and retention rates. The group deployed more focused messaging and also provided state affiliates with tools for tracking current and potential members.

AOA’s United in Possibilities campaign was launched in late 2017 after the association spent the previous year researching strategies for bringing people into the organization. The initial nationwide rollout targeted 7,000 optometrists between 25 and 36 years old with the goal of converting 8% of them into members within a year’s time. The association ended up with nearly 700 new members, or 10% of the target audience.

AOA represents approximately 44,000 doctors of optometry, optometry students and paraoptometric professionals.