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Growth and Positioning Strategies for Associations

Research and Articles

In-depth analyses and presentations of critical topics, including those that Vertical Leap and our partners have had published.

This white paper presents a model for examining your association’s agility to continually re-align priorities and resources with your members’ evolving outcome objectives — especially as you face competitive threats to your association.

If members are not pushing you to have a greater impact --- your association’s relevance may be in more danger than you realize.  Don’t wait until membership declines or the next recession to address it.  Organizational agility is now more critical than ever. 

Many associations struggle to articulate how they will enhance members’ ROI in the upcoming fiscal year.  This can be especially problematic when you are presenting budget recommendations.  That’s why leading associations are augmenting their traditional member “satisfaction” surveys with forward-looking Member Impact Surveys.  A satisfaction survey generally focuses on the Association’s current outputs (conference, journal, education, etc.), whereas an Impact Survey is forward-looking and creates a snapshot in time of:

Having just completed your latest strategic thinking exercise, and having considered the most promising high-impact priorities --- what’s your next step?  


During the late fall of 2013 we conducted a survey of approximately 307 trade association and professional society executives to learn how leading associations are re-thinking their member engagement strategies to accelerate their association’s impact on members, differentiate themselves in the marketplace, grow membership, increase member retention, and drive new revenues.

“Accelerating Strategic Member Engagement” is an excellent e-book that was well laid out and thought provoking. While member engagement is not a new concept, this e-book framed it in a way that I believe really highlights its impact. I especially liked the Strategic Member Engagement Framework which provides a useful and easy to understand model to evaluate current activities within my association for how successfully they engage members. The bottom line is the e-book gave me immediate take-a-ways that I can use in my organization and suspect it will do the same for other association executives too.”

A Free, Downloadable E-Book

Accelerating Strategic Member Engagement© provides practical yet game-changing guidance for Trade Association and Professional Society Executives to accelerate the impact on their industry or profession, while optimizing member retention and securing a sustainable business model.
No longer is member engagement thought of as touchy-feely member relations, communicating stronger or selling louder.

Defying Gravity

Want to Bat Around Ideas?


During a complementary interview, we seek to understand your objectives & current momentum, brainstorming potential process approaches.