If you’re a membership organisation then it’s likely that the most important thing to you – second to member engagement, of course – is membership revenue. It’s also likely, then, that without a steady stream of subscriptions, your organisation will be at risk.
But let’s say that through the implementation of rigorous processes, the inclusion of the best membership CRM on the market, and plain old hard work, your membership revenue is strong and your members are happy. Or, maybe you’re having problems with membership retention and feel that it’s time to stop placing all your revenue eggs in one basket.
What else is there for you to monetise in order to boost revenue? And what other non-subscription revenue streams can you create?
The good news is that there are many available. Of course, their success – or, at least, the effort v return ratio – depends on whether or not you have a membership CRM system in place. Whilst some opportunities are easy (sometimes better) to manage manually, others require a membership management system in place in order to scale.
Having worked with many of the UK’s most prominent membership organisations, here are the five most common (and according to our customers, the most profitable).
- Events sponsorship
Regardless of the sector your membership organisation operates in, it’s pretty likely that you host many events throughout any given year. From one-off events at a regional level through to national AGMs and awards ceremonies, each and every event you host has an audience, and where there’s an audience there’s the opportunity to boost revenue. Could you offer businesses the chance to sponsor a seminar, a speaking opportunity, or an entire event? We’re confident that you could – and pull in significant income in the process. If you’re more focused on generating revenue directly from the events themselves, then the functionality of MMS brings immediacy and efficiency to selling accessories, spinoffs, and tickets to future events that simply aren’t achievable using non-digital methods.
- Guides and educational content
It’s assumed that your membership organisation is the leading light in your respective field. That’s one reason why you have members, after all. So, why not capitalise on your role as a thought leader and industry authority by creating your own guides and reports, which also carry sponsorship potential? Take Silverbear, for example. We have strong ties with MemberWise and regularly sponsor some of the key reports the organisation produces (many of which contain key data and insights that are read over a period of 12 months). Creating valuable gated content that users can access in return for becoming a member, upgrading their membership, or in return for a one-off fee is also a way to increase revenue – all of which isn’t feasible without a MMS.
- Branded merchandise
This sure-fire route to revenue has become so ubiquitous that it’s even developed its own nickname. Who hasn’t heard people refer to it as ‘merch’? Branded merchandise is great, as it provides not just one form of revenue, but multiple depending on how many branded products you decide to offer your members. From pencils and pens to jersey tops and tea towels, the opportunities are endless – and therefore, this particular revenue stream could be, too. But how do you manage it? An MMS not only provides the framework for members to pay for their subscriptions, but it also makes instant credit card payments a possibility.
- Job boards
If you’re a business looking to recruit new talent in a sector that your membership organisation is the expert in, what better route to advertising for the role than targeting your members via a job board that you host? Of course, just like any other advert, this prime real estate should carry a charge – but one that your recruiting customer is likely to be willing to pay in return for accessing the industry’s finest. Taking this one step further, regular email campaigns showcasing the job of the week could help to make recruitment a key income generator. Of course, distributing and managing regular content on this scale requires the ability to quickly segment member data – something that is achievable with an MMS built on Dynamics 365.
Managing well-earned certificates and qualifications has never been easier for members. These days, members can access their certifications within seconds of being awarded a qualification, store all their accreditations in one place, and access it whenever, and from wherever – all thanks to MMS. Whilst you may wish to make an element of certification complimentary – or as part of the membership, at least – you may want to consider charging for multiple certifications. If you do decide to charge, then offering a discount on multiple qualifications may lessen the blow. Either way, without MMS this is difficult, if not impossible, to manage effectively.
By harnessing the benefits of a membership management system, generating additional non-subscription revenue is now more attainable than ever. If you already have an MMS, perhaps the hardest decision to make is choosing which one to pursue!
If you’re considering buying a membership management system built on Dynamics 365 and would like guidance, advice or to simply talk through your requirements, then call one of our Dynamics 365 membership management specialists on 01483 409409.