How Can European Associations Stay Relevant?

Eight strategies to keep European associations important to the industries, members, and professions they serve.

Associations must continuously evaluate their missions, core purposes, and value propositions to stay relevant to the industries, professions, and members they serve. MCI Group surveyed 450 Brussels-based associations late last year to learn how they maintain that relevance. The findings, published in the white paper "Strategies for Tomorrow's Innovative Associations: Understanding the Opportunities" [PDF], suggest the following eight strategies:

  1. Set a sustainable framework (in one's business model and in how one contributes to business-sustainability strategies that ensures your industry or profession's value);
  2. Position your association as a thought leader, especially on emerging issues such as sustainability;
  3. Demonstrate value and relevance to members in locally relevant ways;
  4. Develop new initiatives and revenue streams;
  5. Innovate constantly;
  6. Extend your outreach through partnerships and alliances;
  7. Communicate constantly to all key stakeholders;
  8. Invest in future leaders, who can offer the right energy to meet above challenges.