Is Creating Content Actually Expensive or Are People Just Doing It Wrong?

Do you find yourself constantly worrying about how your association is going to pay for the videos you need to engage and inform your members?

If you’re beginning to think maybe turning off the lights and shutting off the heat at headquarters to conserve cash isn’t such a bad idea after all, I’d like to offer an alternative. 

man wearing a scarf and green coat and hat sitting at a desk with a laptop

Unlock profitable content strategy and avoid being cold, like this guy.


What if I told you that you’re focusing on the wrong problem and that tweaking your content strategy could actually make you money?

No, this isn’t some shady video-based, get-rich-quick scheme. It’s just a different way of thinking about your content programming.

To boil it down: bad video programming is a cost center. It takes cash to plan, produce and promote. And the only way you see a return on that investment is if you’re able to use that video to influence spending in some direct or indirect way.

Good video programming is a value center. Yes, it costs the same to plan, produce and promote, but it makes that money back – either by passing those costs along to others or by opening new revenue channels.

Let’s say you had a proprietary research report that you wanted members to buy — this is on top of their membership dues. After the costs of producing and compiling the report itself, your team projects that if you make a short video promoting it for $4,000, that you will be able to generate enough awareness for $15,000 in sales.

That means, after your vendor is paid, you’ll have only $11,000 to keep your office in sweet, sweet electricity.

Here’s how it looks broken down:

+$15,000 report sales

-$4,000 production costs



But if you structured the project a little differently, you might be able to pump those numbers up. 

What if instead of a promo, you made an educational thought-leadership video about some of the report’s key findings and put out an invite for two sponsors to pay for the opportunity to speak as experts?  

Now your well-programmed video is earning you revenue from:

  1. Sponsors who paid to appear in your video (that’s non-dues revenue)
  2. Members who were engaged by your educational video and were thereby reinforced in their membership decision, rather than annoyed by just another ad (that’s dues revenue)
  3. The report, since members purchased it after watching your video (that’s non-dues revenue)
  4. Non-members, who saw the educational — read: shareable — video on members’ social media and clicked through to your website to get involved with your association (that’s more dues revenue)

In this second scenario, the finances look way different:

+$15,000 report sales

-$4,000 production costs

+$3,000 sponsorship 1

+$3,000 sponsorship 2



And, this is just the calculation for the non-dues revenue that you earned.

If you include the dues revenue from the new members you recruited and the members you retained, the numbers get even higher:

+$15,000 report sales

-$4,000 production costs

+$3,000 sponsorship 1

+$3,000 sponsorship 2

+$1,250 dues from new members (five new members paying $250 for an individual membership)

+$1,000 dues from retained members (four members that were not annoyed by a barrage of ads, continued to pay $250 for their individual memberships)



And this is just one project. Scale this mentality across your entire annual programming and the effects could be huge. 


Want to learn more about the treasure trove that is monetizable content?

Our short video serves as a great little guidebook on the different ways videos can be monetized. Many of the options can be incorporated into any video project and we also offer a peek into the options exclusive to our platform. 

Now go get that money!

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