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Old 03-03-2014, 09:33 AM   #43
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The first year dropout rate for the WBCCI is no different then any other car club or social club. If you don't interest the new member in the first year you lose them, it's the same the world over.

It is really up to the Unit the new members joins. They need to invite them and make them feel welcome and get them involved. Once the new member starts having fun, then they will renew.

If you set at home or camp alone, and only read the Blue Beret, then yes your not using your $65 wisely. One would then have to ask, why did you join?

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Originally Posted by Protagonist View Post
That's not necessarily a cause-and-effect relationship. Airstreams aren't a "trade the old one in and buy a new one" commodity like automobiles.

I only joined WBCCI 2˝ years ago. One thing I noticed right away: The only thing you get for your membership is the Blue Beret magazine and some red numbers to stick on your trailer. Seemingly everything else about the club costs extra. That turns off some folks who feel that $65 membership dues ought to stretch a little bit farther.

Granted, your membership also grants you access to a few Airstream-only parks scattered around the country. And it grants you access to a network of courtesy parking providers. But not everyone uses those benefits, either due to a lack of awareness of the benefits, inconvenient locations compared to where the new members live and camp, or whatever.

Where WBCCI has a problem isn't the fact that 60-70% of new Airstream buyers are first-timers. It's the number of first-year WBCCI members who fail to renew for a second year, on the basis of (1) "I don't get benefits that are worth the price I pay," or (2) "I don't want to deal with the politics and infighting of the organization," or (3) insert a personal reason here.

I think that most members who renew for a second year will stick with the club for many more years. But I have no clue how to make the club more attractive to first-year members so that they will renew when the time comes. And I don't think free first-year memberships alone will necessarily lead to second-year membership renewals.

Standard disclaimer #3 applies: The statements above are my own personal opinions and do not reflect the opinions of management.
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Old 03-03-2014, 09:54 AM   #44
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I agree with Damon: This is not about a drop-out rate defined by cost of dues, but it's also not really about the cost of the dues. A rate of $65+unit really isn't that much money.

What it is about, again in my opinion, is pretty much what the WBCCI is supposed to be: Fun, friendship and adventure. In my view, the current set-up is defined way too much as "friendship" while the other two are presumed without discussion to be derivative.

This is not at all to say that friendship is unimportant. It's just that the fun and the adventure are often missing as independent components of membership.


Lynn

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Originally Posted by damonbeals View Post
The first year dropout rate for the WBCCI is no different then any other car club or social club. If you don't interest the new member in the first year you lose them, it's the same the world over.

It is really up to the Unit the new members joins. They need to invite them and make them feel welcome and get them involved. Once the new member starts having fun, then they will renew.

If you set at home or camp alone, and only read the Blue Beret, then yes your not using your $65 wisely. One would then have to ask, why did you join?

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Old 03-03-2014, 01:52 PM   #45
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I agree with Damon: This is not about a drop-out rate defined by cost of dues, but it's also not really about the cost of the dues. A rate of $65+unit really isn't that much money.


Lynn
Actually I think a lot of it is about the value received for the $65. dues, plus unit dues and perhaps intra club dues, Vintage club and radio club in our case.
Total, over $100 for us.

The international priced itself above what we are willing to pay when they decided full hookups only.
The Florida State rally as we knew it is gone having been replaced by a MUCH more expensive rally and no need for WBCCI membership to attend.
We have a lot at TCPC but don't need to be members of the WBCCI for that.
WE go to the WBCCI radio club rally in Orlando each year but don't need WBCCI membership for that either.
We do like both Mystic Springs and Top of Georgia but for whatever reason, our travels have not taken us to either one in years.

For us the benefit we get from the dues is minimal and the dues are higher than the other RV clubs we belong to or are aware of.
Every year I wonder if I should write that check again and go ahead and do it out of habit.
If I had just been through my first year in the club and did not have a 40 years history it is unlikely I would have stayed around for year number two
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Old 03-03-2014, 05:37 PM   #46
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We have been members of WBCCI since the month we bought our first Airstream, Dec 2001. We were out of the country on 9/11 and decided we wanted to travel in our country, not around the world as originally planned. (I had worked international for 10+ years in Europe, Middle East and Asia). Anyway we have really utilized the club membership by becoming active members of a unit and attending 7-10 unit rallies per year, state and region rallies, special event rallies (Galax, Sugar Creek, Statue of Liberty, Branson) and by going on caravans. Our unit has at least one nine day caravan every year, planned for those still working and to get folks into the idea of going on a caravan. We have been on 18 national WBCCI caravans ranging from two weeks long, Cajun, to two months long, Viking, Maple Leaf, Nor by Nor'East as well as shorter, Polar Bear, Great River Road, Wilder West. The caravans are a major positive reason to belong to the club as they really provide economic savings. We co-led the SW Adventure Caravan for four years and here is the comparison. We paralleled several "for-profit" caravans (Good Sam, Tracs, Fantdasy) and the difference for comparable value is major. Our caravan cost in 2013 was $4000 for 53 days for a couple. at the end we returned $400 back to each couple so the cost was $3600 or $60/day. Included in the cost were these activities, narrow gauge train ride Durango to Silverton, Tour of Mesa Verde, tour Monument Valley, jeep ride at Moab, mule ride in Bryce Canyon, in Page, Rainbow Bridge boat tour, raft ride on Colorado, tour Antelope Canyon, tour Canyon de Chelly with indian guide, Albuquerque Ballon Fiesta Rally, several other tours to museums, puebloes, churches etc. Included were 25 meals, none in a Golden Corral and all camping. Comparable cost for "for Profit" tours was $9600 for 43 days.
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Old 03-04-2014, 07:22 AM   #47
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actually should be $70 per day. My math skills left me for awhile
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Old 07-08-2017, 09:30 PM   #48
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Just curious if there are any stats available since 2014 relative to the number of WBCCI members?

A lot of good information about WBCCI in this thread.
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Old 07-09-2017, 06:55 AM   #49
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Just curious if there are any stats available since 2014 relative to the number of WBCCI members?

A lot of good information about WBCCI in this thread.
3 Year old thread, but I saw your post and just happened to run across an article on membership yesterday that answers your question.

From the Blue Beret/February 2017- Membership - Teresa Taylor Chairman
"January 1-December 31 2016 we have welcomed 1,911 new members into our Airstream family. Total membership as of December 31 2016, is 6,559 members. This is our highest membership since 2009."
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Old 08-12-2017, 05:06 PM   #50
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3 Year old thread, but I saw your post and just happened to run across an article on membership yesterday that answers your question.

From the Blue Beret/February 2017- Membership - Teresa Taylor Chairman
"January 1-December 31 2016 we have welcomed 1,911 new members into our Airstream family. Total membership as of December 31 2016, is 6,559 members. This is our highest membership since 2009."
I'm a little late but thanks for the info. FWIW, my DW and I decided to join the WBCCI and have asked and received 22721 as our number.

A question. I see WBCCI used as well as WBAC. Are they the same thing and can the acronyms be used interchangeably?
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Old 08-12-2017, 06:45 PM   #51
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I'm a little late but thanks for the info. FWIW, my DW and I decided to join the WBCCI and have asked and received 22721 as our number.

A question. I see WBCCI used as well as WBAC. Are they the same thing and can the acronyms be used interchangeably?
The club is still officially the WBCCI, but the name Wally Byam Airsteam Club is being used (legally) to better define who we are and what we do. The new official logo for the club uses the Wally Byam Airsteam Club name.
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Old 08-25-2017, 11:24 PM   #52
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Membership update, We hit 7000 memberships July 31, 2017 and have been averaging 35 new members a week since. Some other updates, we now have a new unit in Europe with 160 members and the Wasatch Utah has just hit 60 members as a 2 year old Club. The "new" Southeastern Camping Club which in 2014 had 35 members is now over 100 members. This club is growing and changing, We have some fun new Caravans like the Bourbon Trail and Landmarks West Coast. The club is working on New Special Events including Urban Rallies and Adventure Rallies. This isn't the same club it was 3 years ago.
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Old 08-27-2017, 07:31 AM   #53
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That's great news, I think! Most people want to be part of something that is growing and popular. Just curious about what has changed that seems to be drawing more members?
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Old 08-28-2017, 01:09 PM   #54
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Yes it is great news, the club is growing, I think, because we have been listening to our members and giving them what they want, great rallies, good friends and lots of fun. Our Leadership last year was AZflycaster who has been a Forum moderator for years and really had the pulse of the Airstream owner and pushed us forward, the current President is also looking at the Airstream owner and concentrating on the Airstream experience. I'm pretty excited about the club, we have a lot going on, Many of our newer members are excited about the club and are volunteering to be head Party Planners of their local club. Our local clubs around the US, Canada and Europe are working on some pretty awesome rallies. Besides Airforums we are very active on other social media and working on Member Benefits. I think all of these things are working together and show that this is a pretty good club to be part of.
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Old 08-28-2017, 01:34 PM   #55
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As a new member I can tell you why I am debating whether to continue with my membership. I joined because I wanted to be able to join a caravan with experienced Airstream owners. Since this is the first year I have owned any RV I thought traveling with experienced RVers would be safer and more fun than going alone. However the caravans are all booked up, some years in advance. I am on 4 standby lists for 2018 caravan season, I bought my Airstream in December of 2017. I might be able to join a caravan in 2019. For me, that took all the excitement away. By the time 2019 rolls around I am pretty sure I will have figured most of this stuff out. Two years to wait for adventure and fun seem like a long way off.
In my case, I have learned much more from the forum, which is free than I have from the club.
I have signed up for the international rally in Salem , OR which will be my first rally and now I am a little concerned that it will end up being all political and stuff so instead of being really excited I am rather hesitant to even go.
The view I have expressed are my alone from my personal experience so far.
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Old 08-28-2017, 01:51 PM   #56
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I have signed up for the international rally in Salem , OR which will be my first rally and now I am a little concerned that it will end up being all political and stuff so instead of being really excited I am rather hesitant to even go.
A lot of the rally is business. That can't be helped. The club is a registered non-profit organization and is required by tax laws to hold two business meetings a year.

At least WBCCI wraps their business meeting in a rally, so that those who aren't directly involved in running the club can have fun while they're there.

You can skip all of the business-related events and attend just the fun events. That's exactly what I intend to do in Salem. My first two Internationals, I was a Unit officer, and had to take part in the business events— even when they conflicted with the fun events. At Salem, I intend to avoid the business-related events like they were poison.
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