If associations aren’t careful, they’ll follow the same path Eastman Kodak Company’s film business took, warns Shira Harrington, chief engagement officer of Purposeful Hire and an association recruitment expert.
Kodak knew photography was moving to digital formats, even building one of the first digital cameras in 1975, but the company was slow to transform its business which accounted for 90 percent of film sales in the 1990s.
Likewise the value proposition for association membership has changed over the past 10 years as millennials have become a larger part of the workforce – and a larger percentage of the association target audience, points out Harrington. “If associations don’t change their current business models to attract and engage them, they will be defunct in 10 years as existing members retire,” she warns.
Here are 12 strategic steps association leaders can take to recruit, engage, retain and develop younger members, to prepare the association not just for survival, but also for success.