Four Observations for Associations in 2019




As you make your plans for 2019 – consider these long-term plays.
#1 Update your sponsorship programs with new inventory. We’ve detailed through our content on those elements you need to change, and how – but let me give you something to think about right away. Drop 10% of your inventory and add 10% new offerings to your prospectus.
Look at the opportunities that are languishing, not compelling to your prospects – drop those and add 10% new. If you need some ideas – check out our library of sponsorship content to help.
#2 Podcasting is a medium that has seen fast growth. The American Boiler Manufacturers Association (ABMA) and the Textile Rental Services Association (TRSA) have launched their podcasting programs to great success.  Association podcast growth will continue to soar, and not just because it’s “cool,” because it is a great way to connect personally to your industry.  And, don’t let the fact you’re a small association keep you from getting out of the blocks.  With all the tools to self-publish, it’s not an excuse.
#3 Individual membership organizations are increasingly adopting group or corporate membership model. So, we’re looking at the growth of hybrid organizations; individual membership organizations see the value of group memberships and are looking to expand those programs.
And, finally, #4 is something I don’t know much about. But, I hear a good deal around this topic – the gap between associations and their needs on the sales side for membership, sponsorship, and ads; and, what your association management systems (AMS) provide regarding the process, operation, pipelines, and reporting. I don’t know what the issue is: whether the AMS has these modules and the associations aren’t implementing them, or the associations are saying this is what we need and the AMS systems don’t have them.
Either way, there is a gap here. It’s rare I see associations that can deliver some good activity to me – pipeline line reports, etc.… directly from their AMS system. I believe this is an issue that will continue to percolate next year.
Here are the four things I see coming down the pike – I welcome any observations you see in associations.  Comment below.


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