Uncovering Hidden Revenue Streams in Your Programs

Launching a new event or program is an exciting way to increase association revenue streams. But the big new idea and the human, financial or technological resources to support it aren’t always available!

The good news?

You may have hidden revenue streams in your association’s existing programs. Here are 5 examples of places you just may find some hidden treasure.

1. Annual Conference Sponsorship Opportunities
Many associations are leaving thousands or tens of thousands of sponsorship dollars on the table because they’re not thinking broadly or deeply enough about opportunities at their event. You likely have lots of opportunities to help sponsors build brand awareness (ie, feature their logo and name on signs and takeaways), but what about opportunities for them to showcase their product or service, demonstrate their thought leadership and expertise, deepen current client relationships, or drive traffic to their website? We love helping association volunteers think those questions through from the perspective of what’s in it for the sponsor, uncovering new ideas and elevating the value of the sponsor’s event investment at the same time.

2. Annual Conference Sponsorship Levels
Staying on the conference theme for just a minute, when was the last time you significantly increased your sponsorship package levels? You may well find that you can attract much larger investments just by building a higher-dollar package and then asking for that sale.

3. Year-round Sponsorship Opportunities
If your sponsorship opportunities begin and end with your annual conference, you’re definitely leaving revenue on the table. Developing year-round opportunities and then approaching sponsors with an annual engagement package before their annual budget cycle can be a significant boost not just to your revenues but to their engagement opportunities – a win-win for everyone.

4. Identifying Your Under-Served Membership Segments
What member segments are skipping out on your annual event or not engaging in your online education programs? Digging into the data and then having meaningful conversations with those groups often yields some simple shifts in your educational content offerings that can attract deeper and broader member engagement without a new program launch. Are your young professionals looking for a particular set of professional development topics? Do you have a membership segment who would love to see a new track at your conference next year? Is there a group struggling to make connections who could be served through one of your existing online or in person networking programs? Increasing the value you’re delivering to current members – and increasing their financial investment with the association – can be one of the best and easiest ways to build your non-dues revenues.

5. Replays & Special Events
Repackaging educational content for delivery in a variety of formats is an opportunity whose time has most certainly come. Are you recording and reselling your conference sessions? Curating a “best of” series from your members-only programs to offer for sale to non-members? Giving non-members a means to pay-to-play to get a taste of the publications, webinars or other events you’re hosting for members? Offering a virtual event midway between your annual conferences? If not, those are conversations worth having as you consider not only how you can boost revenues but how to increase the value and accessibility of the great work you’re already doing.

By maximizing these revenue-generating strategies, associations can successfully navigate challenges and ensure sustained financial stability and future growth. It is important to adapt these strategies to fit the unique needs of your association, industry, and member base. We love helping new clients discover untapped opportunities!

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