Recently, I’ve worked with associations whose membership revenue has been hammered by any number of factors – from mergers and acquisitions to increased competition for member dollars to slow organic growth in a tough economy. The remedy?
First and foremost, dues structures in general need to be examined – for instance, membership dues based on annual revenue could be arcane in the current business environment and first up for an overhaul. But, to get to the heart of the problem – you should perform a check-up or check list, if you will – to evaluate the overall health of the association.
- We conduct a review of the membership dues structures and rate cards for competing organizations to identify what members are paying at other associations.
- We take a hard look at the comparative benefits and services.
- We complete an economic analysis reflective of non-dues revenue streams.
- And, a critical element to the process – we interview association members about what they find most valuable about your organization – and, what they don’t. We also uncover what benefits they receive and are greatly valued at competing organizations.
Based on this comprehensive evaluation, you could see and hear strategic opportunities for consideration and expert recommendations to improve the well-being of the organization. We’ve seen the launch of some successful dues and services programs, which offer simplification and clarity. For example: many organizations have implemented a “premium” membership program that feature key elements of value; others offer 2- and 3-year contracts with members – and, several have developed customized membership packages, based on the benefits most valued.
It comes down to what the member perceives as value. If your membership numbers are lagging – you may need a look under the hood.