Membership and friends schemes

Membership and friends schemes

Issue 42 / April 2011

Love and belonging appear halfway up Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs with ‘esteem’ sitting on the level above leading us to believe that people want to belong or need to belong to something for a variety of reasons. Here at the AMA – your very own membership organisation – arts professionals are members for a whole range of reasons and benefits. We have our fans among them.

This issue of JAM looks at the challenge for our arts organisations in offering people ways to enter into a mutually beneficial and quality relationship with them.

Liz Hill and Brian Whitehead consider you need to think about when devising a membership scheme in an extract from The Complete Membership Handbook (page 6) and Jennifer Faure Francis gives an insight into how the Friends Scheme at the Royal Academy of Arts was conceived and continues to grow (page 8).

Sarah Gee looks at keeping your friends on side (page 10) and Sarah Chambers of the National Theatre looks at providing a tailored membership approach (page 14). Roger Tomlinson explores friends and members becoming fans – taking the rough of the organisation with the smooth as in football and not simply belonging for benefits including priority booking, free programmes or reduced rates (page 16). Nina Simons discussed an exciting new membership scheme at the Whitney Museum of American Art with Kristen Denner (page 18) and Melanie Murphy from the Royal Academy of Dance gives an insight into their membership scheme (page 20).

Our forever friends include Heather Maitland’s research round up (page 4) looking into what can be achieved with membership schemes and who should have one, Jonathan Goodacre profiles the AMA blog – AMA COMMONS – in the middle pages, the spotlight falls on recently appointed board member Emma Walker (page 3) and we get to know a little bit about Sam Eaves, Birmingham Royal Ballet in just a minute (page 22)

Any thoughts, comments or suggestions for JAM? Please email the Editor.

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