You have been running in-person training for years.
For the past 12 months, you have added webinars and online courses.
Yet you continue to keep finding yourself asking, ‘What can we offer to members, that they will value?’
….Or some derivative of that question.
A better question to ask is, ‘What problems, which we are suited to solving, are shared by many members?’
One tip I recently took from a book I was reading – “Find conversations that are already happening online.” (from “Superfans: The Easy Way to Stand Out, Grow Your Tribe, And Build a Successful Business” by Pat Flynn).
Pat suggests places like LinkedIn and Facebook Groups, as well as Google searches. He provides some great ideas that includes putting terms like “Please help” into the searches you use.
He adds: “When you follow up, ask questions like, What kinds of solutions have you tried so far? If you had a magic wand to solve this challenge, what would things look like for you? I promise you’ll receive a ton of incredibly valuable information you’ll be able to feed directly back into your business.”
From myself; here are a few things you may not have thought of.
Tourism operators struggle with things like brochures. Yet there is a pretty standard paradigm to approach them. Why not have some templates made up for them? Or, at the least, provide some training or support that gives them an idea of how to approach it.
Hiring a photographer for one offshoot can be expensive. Can you organise a photographer to hit a lot of venues in a short burst? Maybe this is a tiered membership addition. Maybe you retain the copyright but everyone that participates gets access to the images.
Can you help identify and communicate grants suitable for members? Many of them struggle for capital to keep growing and expanding.
Are you able to provide advice, leads or PR contacts to help businesses learn how to communicate a story and get exposure through traditional media?
Just think as if you were a business owner. What problems are you trying to solve? If your answers include things that are going to be common among many businesses, ask yourself if there is a way you can help them solve it.
You have far more capability within your DMO than many of your small operators will ever have.
I’ve speculated for a couple of years now, the future of DMOs is going to be far more about destination management, than destination marketing.
This stuff is going to be at the center of what you do. It is only a matter of time. Comfort in the status quo is the only thing stopping you.