You’ve probably heard the term “Internet of Things” thrown around in conversations and articles recently, referring to the interconnected nature of all the devices you use. The concept relates to the idea of all your electronic gadgets talking to each other and gathering data about you, your activities, and personal trends to develop a cognitive intelligence about you as a whole.

For example, your iWatch connects to your iPhone, which connects to an app that tracks the number of steps you take each day and acts as a personal coach to guide your path towards a healthier lifestyle.

Or you might be able to turn on the alarm at your home from your cellphone when you arrive at the office and realize you forgot to activate it before leaving the house. There’s even a mattress that senses when you start to make subtle movements in the morning, indicating you’re about to wake up, and automatically starts your coffeemaker, so a fresh cup is already brewed by the time you stumble into the kitchen.

The Membership of Things, a term co-opted by Abila’s Director of Member Strategy, Amanda Myers, brings the idea of The Internet of Things to the association sector, and how your association software can help you make informed decisions about your members, based on all the data you’re collecting about them from various sources.

When members attend your conference, for example, you can set up alerts to notify them on their mobiles when a session they’ve indicated interest in is about to start. Following the session, you can send a survey and related materials and direct those members to register for an online learning course you’re offering later in the month.

Each individual piece of data on a member’s engagement with your association, on its own, may not tell you much. However, when you put it all together, you can gather some incredibly insightful information about what matters to members, and use it to continue to send them targeted and personalized messaging.

The consumerization of the member experience is rapidly changing, and expectations are shifting right along with it. If you can learn to anticipate a member’s behavior, your association can drastically improve overall relationship management. Imagine if, based on specific behavior, you could tell whether a member was at risk for cancelling his or her membership. Theoretically, you could take actions now to prevent that person from ever severing ties with your organization. And you can do it all with the right analysis of the data you already have.

Have we piqued your interest on how you can capitalize on The Membership of Things? Join Amanda Myers on Monday, February 27 at 2 p.m. ET for an interactive webinar during which she’ll take you through the rationale and practical implications of The Membership of Things, and provide actionable ways your association can start making more out of your membership software today.

If you’re looking for more major trends affecting associations over the coming year, check out our 2017 Association Predictions for the six major trends Abila identified as having an impact on organizations like yours.