There are many reasons why associations may choose to overhaul their member dues structure. For the Globalization and Localization Association, it came down to equity.
“We had a flat, one-price-for-all dues structure,” said Allison Ferch, GALA’s executive director. “We’re a trade association, so when a company joins, they get all the benefits for their members. One of our values is equity, and we felt that it wasn’t fair to put a huge [financial] burden on smaller companies.”
As it considered ways to reorganize its dues structure and pricing, GALA collected data from its annual member survey and conducted focus groups with members. The association also considered approaches based on benefits, region, headcount, and other factors.
In January 2023, GALA introduced a new dues model based on self-reported company or department revenues and divided into four tiers. Though only four months in, GALA has yielded 19 percent more dues revenue than if it hadn’t made any changes based on the total number of current members.
“It is not only ‘the ability to pay’ that influenced our approach but also money for value,” Ferch wrote on GALA’s website explaining the changes.
Redesigning your dues structure with a focus on members will not only deliver more value to them but also help improve an organization’s bottom line.