Getting the Most Out of Your Membership 2013

Mike BryanGetting the Most Out of Your Membership by Mike Bryan

Surely everyone would agree that owning a Porsche is a lot of fun, but many would add that being an active member of the Porsche Club doubles the fun. That’s not a bad deal for less than 50 bucks of membership dues. The “double your fun” principle will certainly resonate with those who have participated in UCR Fun Runs, Socials, Driver Education, Tech Sessions and more. Hopefully, the UCR and PCA web sites, the monthly Provinz and Panorama magazines and email newsletters do the same for those of our members who don’t take part in club events for various reasons. We’ll come to the numbers shortly, but for now let’s just say that UCR is a very large car club with diverse interests among its members. Over the years the club has developed a program with all the different kind of events referred to above and has pursued a goal to provide something to suit all interests.

In each edition of Provinz there’s a page… or two, showing a list of new members, and there’s another page showing the milestone anniversaries of longstanding club members. All these individuals are helping maintain the growth of our club into one of the largest in North America. You may already be aware that UCR has won the annual PCA award for actual growth on a regular basis, thanks to the hard work of our Membership Event Chairs, Angie and Mark Herring and Ken Jensen, plus all the volunteers who organise events and manage our communications, as well as the vendors and sponsors that promote our club. We can’t ignore the fact that Porsche Cars Canada and their dealers are doing an amazing job in growing the population of Porsches in our region, so our membership growth potential has been rising steadily. To add some perspective, we estimate that 20-25% of Porsche owners in our geographical region are PCA UCR members. On one hand, this is a very high penetration rate for a car club, but on the other hand, it tells us that 75-80% of Porsche vehicle owners are not members, perhaps because they are unaware of our club or don’t believe it’s for them.

When we join this club, we become members of the Porsche Club of America, the largest single marque car club in the world. Since PCA covers all of the USA and Canada and has so many members – nearly 63,000, it is divided into 139 regions, so that each can be managed locally with its own volunteer boards of directors and event chairs who are free to organise their own club activities, publish their own newsletter and run their own web site – all in accordance with the rules and guidelines set by the parent organization, PCA. Of those 139 regions, our local club, Upper Canada Region, defined geographically as most of Ontario except the Ottawa Valley, has the third largest membership of those 139 Regions, with over 2100 Primary members. When we add in what we call Affiliate Members, the total is over 3200. Affiliate Members are our spouses, partners and friends whose name you might have included when you signed up as a member of the “Porsche Club of America, Upper Canada Region”. At that time, you provided information that was entered in the PCA database. The database is operated and protected in accordance with current privacy regulations and is accessible only by PCA staff and a few designated UCR officials. However, as a member, you can access your own individual record in the PCA database, so if you wish to check its accuracy or update it, here’s what you should do:

1. Go to pca.org (This takes you directly to the PCA web site managed by the salaried PCA Head Office staff in Columbia, MD).

2. Click on “Member Login”. This will open the page that asks you to type in your User Name and Password. If you don’t know these, click on “Forgot User Name or Password”. Please note that you can only click on one of these at a time and then enter your email address, so that these can be sent to you. Be aware that our own UCR web site, www.pcaucr.org , run locally by our own volunteer web master Richard Shepard, is a different site, so any user name and password that you might have set up for accessing member-only areas on that web site, will not be recognised by the PCA web site, unless of course you have gone to www.pca.org and signed up with the same login details.

You will have received your PCA User Name and Password when you first joined. If you can’t find them, then contact our own Angie or Mark Herring, click here or PCA at admin@pca.org .

3. Once you are logged in at pca.org , click on “Membership”, then scroll down to “Member Services” and across to “Member Record”. Click on that and you’ll see your personal information that is stored in the PCA database.

4. If you wish to correct or update your record, click on the pencil icon and make the changes. Apart from any obvious spelling and address corrections, please ensure that your car model and details are up to date and that you have entered your current email address. This will ensure that you receive PCA and UCR broadcast emails bringing you alerts and the latest news. It will also help the kind of statistical analysis below to be more accurate and meaningful.

5. IF YOU HAVE LOST YOUR MEMBERSHIP CARD, follow the instructions in 3 above. In the same menu as “Member Record” you’ll see “Replace Membership Card”. Just click on that and you’ll see an image of your membership card that you can print. To get a permanent replacement card, just click on the link on that page in order to make the request to PCA.

As we have said, every member’s record is secure and protected, but you may be interested in some of the general statistics that can be drawn from the database. Now remember, the output is only a reflection of the input, so you’ll see some obvious inaccuracies and discrepancies in the following numbers:

Porsche Models Listed by UCR Members in PCA Database
Model – # of Vehicles
356 – 16
911 (unspecified) – 1083
912 – 13
914 – 27
924 – 12
928 – 48
944 – 169
951 (Turbo 944) – 13
968 – 24
996 – 62
997 – 47
Boxster – 283
Cayman – 93
Panamera – 63
Cayenne – 157
Total – 2110

Model Years – # vehicles – Avg. Years of Owner as UCR Member
1954 to 1964 – 14 – 21
1965 to 1969 – 34 – 14
1970 to 1979 – 160 – 13
1980 to 1989 – 435 – 10
1990 to 1999 – 305 – 8
2000 to 2009 – 817 – 5
2010 to 2013 – 356 – 2

Hmm.. very interesting, but so what? Well, for those who manage your club, this is pretty useful information. For example, it tells us that more than 10% of our members drive sedans and SUVs. This prompts us to think about what kind of activities and articles might be of interest to them. What else? There’s a sizeable group of newer members (0 – 7 years) driving newer vehicles. That causes us to wonder how they see the club and what they want to get out of it. And what about those with older vehicles? They may be looking for parts and the sharing of technical information. It’s not black and white of course, but these simple statistics do help us focus our thoughts on what you might want from your club. To follow through with that idea, some of you will know that we have begun to collect feedback after UCR events. We want to know what you thought of it, whether you would do it again and what ideas you might have for improving it. So, as long as you have included your email address in your member record, don’t be surprised if you receive an email after an event, asking you to click on a URL and complete a short survey to gather your feedback. Our experience with this to date is fantastic. The response rate has been very high and the feedback has been enormously helpful in giving us direction on how to improve future events. Don’t worry, we won’t bombard you with surveys, but we do hope you’ll share your opinions when asked, so that we can learn and get your ideas on how to improve future events.

You don’t have to wait for a survey, though. If you have ideas and suggestions on how we can improve your membership experience, please contact me or any of the club officials listed on another page here in Provinz. While we may take pride in the growth and size of our club, our focus is on delivering enjoyment and value to our current members by improving our understanding of your wants and needs, so that we can fill our annual agenda with events and communications that you enjoy. Hand in hand with that focus is our drive to grow and develop our volunteer base in order to sustain the high quality experience that you expect from UCR programs. That is essential if we’re going to succeed in doubling the fun we want you to get as a PCA/UCR member.

Mike Bryan

UCR Director

Leave a Reply