Associations are in the business of helping people. You probably spend a lot of time creating, crafting, and curating content that's valuable to your members and attractive to potential members.
So what should you do with it? Offer it to people who can use it, of course!
But what about non-members? Should you just give your content away?
Your first instinct is probably something along the lines of "heck no! If we give away the milk, who's going to buy the cow?" What you mean, of course, is if you give away your content why on earth would someone pay to attend an event or pay for membership?
That's a valid concern, but consider this: by providing helpful content you are proving your association's worth up front, right away, with no questions. Potential members will get use out of your content and be attracted back to you as a resource the next time they are in a pickle. The next time they come back it'll be for a deeper reason than an internet search: maybe it'll be to check out your other resources, see who's on your board, what's on your website, or what's next on your event calendar. Your content is the bait on the hook. Then your reel in your new member!
Your next question is probably something along the lines of, "If I offer my content for free, what benefit am I giving my members? I want to take care of them first and ensure that they're getting their value."
Smart thinking, Association Pro. Your members are your biggest asset and the most likely place to meet new members and you're right, it's your #1 job that they get their value.
How about some exclusive content? We're talking about those documents that require more research, more in depth analysis, and time-consuming collaboration. A bonus aspect is that this content can be a great teaser for non-members to entice them to join.
Ultimately the benefits to giving away content almost always outweigh the drawbacks. It's up to you and your board, though, as how to proceed!
An AMS can be a great place to collaborate, share, and get suggestions for association content. What is an AMS? Download our free guide below to see if an AMS is a good solution for your association!