Restructuring Membership Dues for Associations



Hi everybody! Hey folks! We’ve been involved with many different associations and helping them restructure their membership dues. It’s actually fascinating work!
Here are some tips that will apply across all types of industries: food and beverage, manufacturing, professional services, and many other types of groups. Associations are reconsidering, and modernizing, their dues structure for the business realities of today in their industry. It is really important to go through the math. And, actually, the math is easy. You can run scenarios for each company and how much they pay. You can also calculate what would happen if you switch their categories around and how it might affect the top-line revenue of the association. You may also consider what would happen if you’ve got mergers and consolidations in your industry. We’ve got some models that help associations navigate that.
The second most important thing, in addition to getting your math right, is to make sure you do a qualitative analysis. Interviews with your members, possibly even a survey or two. Here’s why: they’re going to tell you about the expectations that they have of your organization. They’re going possibly mention where you fit around the other associations that they are members of. You’ll get to hear some resistance points or maybe some areas where they might be not returning the investment that they expect from you. The most successful rollouts I’ve ever seen are those that do the qualitative and listen to their members, in addition to the math. The associations that just do the math and roll out a new dues structure get smacked in some way, shape, or form. If you’ve got both, you’re going to learn a lot of things about what they expect from your organization. They’re also going to tee up the story and the narrative you need to communicate the dues change, or that modernization.
Final thought for you is a lot of people think that this means dues increase all the time. Actually, in our experience, that’s not always the case. Do your math to make sure that that’s what is allowed, or that’s what your association will allow, is that in some categories you might raise the dues and others you actually might consolidate and decrease the dues.
Hope that’s helpful for you, thanks for watching! Bye-bye.


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