Associations need money coming in to support their mission, serve their members and generally stay afloat. Association revenue can take a number of different forms, from membership dues to selling advertising space to suppliers. In this week’s Association Debrief, we give you the best financial tips for building association revenue.
It’s no secret that it can be a challenge to sustain an organization on member dues alone. This article covers the topic of non-dues revenue, or revenue that associations generate outside of their member dues. It gives a brief overview of non-dues revenue, then looks at some of the challenges that smaller organizations face in generating non-dues revenue. Finally, it suggests a number of options that smaller organizations can pursue to generate additional revenue, including selling advertising space on their website, e-newsletters, and member welcome packets, galas or banquets, and meetings and conferences.
Is raising your dues a sore spot for your members? You’re not alone. This article examines the debate over raising member dues in light of the Department of Labor’s recent overtime rule. It suggests that instead of waiting a long time to raise dues and then raising them dramatically, associations can benefit from raising them regularly but incrementally, to reduce member sticker shock. It uses the example of the Golf Course Superintendent’s Association of America, which raises dues every two years to account for inflation, to show how associations can benefit from incremental increases without alarming or losing their members.
Sometimes short, targeted fundraising campaigns can have a greater effect than broader long-term efforts. This article introduces the concept of doing a donor-focused, limited-time fundraising campaign through the example of Infant Crisis Services’ 10-day campaign that raised over $14,000. The article takes the form of a Q&A between the author and ICS’ director of development and communication, and covers the results and evolution of the campaign. It also includes recommendations for other organizations that are considering similar efforts, including getting creative and remembering that video is an essential piece of an impactful short campaign.
An association’s funding doesn’t need to come from individuals alone. This article explores how associations can use partnerships to secure funding, build visibility and benefit from other organization’s resources and expertise. It uses real-life examples of the National Associations of Women Business Owners and the American Association of School Librarians to show how organizations have benefitted from pursuing partnerships, and suggests ideas that other associations can use to establish partnerships of their own.
Non-dues revenue is an alluring prospect, but it takes discipline and focus to make the most of your non-dues opportunities. This article covers three considerations that organizations need to keep in mind when growing their non-dues revenue. These considerations include staying focused on your mission, doing your market research and shifting the culture, and the article gives explanations recommendations for each. The recommendations include researching your competition and understanding how you fit into the market, avoiding IRS interest for non-mission-related income, and determining how to integrate your revenue streams into your organization’s culture.