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To boost member value, revenues, groups should put on business hat

Affinity programs losing luster; for-profit unit can offer something unique

Boppell and Ello
NAM's Todd Boppell, left, and ICBA Reinsurance's Steve Ello.

Dec. 1, 2017
By William Ehart

Affinity programs have long been a staple of association nondues revenue generation, but changing times have some questioning the wisdom and value of such arrangements.

Instead, they say, many associations could benefit their industries and themselves by going into business on their own.

But it takes research, preparation and the right mindset to succeed when forming a business services unit or for-profit subsidiary—and the ability to find the right talent to run it. Sometimes, such talent is best found not in the association sector but in the business world.