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November 14, 2005


Now that I think about it, one group I'm involved with is sort of doing this for its annual meeting, if only accidentally. It's a really small group, and the meeting is limited to less than 40 attendees. There's a very small registration fee, which basically barely covers the costs.

Last year, several people paid more than the fee (double!), voluntarily, without the organizers even bringing the idea up. Some people paid more than the fee even though they weren't able to make the meeting. That's how strongly they felt about the group's mission.

Then again, this group is really passionate about what it's doing, and it's small, and no one even suggested that they do this--it was completely their idea. I have a hard time imagining it happening with larger, less-involved groups.

But wouldn't it be interesting? Talk about motivation to put on a really great event...

P.S. I didn't take any compensation days from Typepad, since I don't really use my account much these days.

I've been thinking about this as a monetization strategy for membership in a business networking group. Right now, Biznik http://www.biznik.com is currently a free business networking group launched 6 months ago in Seattle. I think it would be really interesting to try this "pay what you feel" approach to membership fees. Most business networking groups are way overpriced. A component of this might be publically displaying on users profiles how much they've paid. That way people who are too cheap to contribute would get peer pressure from others who have.

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