Exploring the market potential and bundling of business association services

Robert Bennett, Paul Robson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper is aimed at association managers and market advisors. It explores how associations balance their provision of different services, the potential for associations to provide new services, and the relevance of service “bundling”. A new survey of small firm use of associations in Britain shows that there are few differences between businesses by sector in their use of association services, but membership does significantly increase with firm size, and there is a pattern of “joiners” who belong to many associations, and “non-joiners”. There is considerable evidence of the benefits of bundling a range of low-cost, low-intensity services. But actual use levels of services are low. Even joiners of many associations seem to use association membership chiefly as an insurance principle: to gain ready access to a range of services “just in case”. Analysis of the potential for new services suggests a few potential new specific niches that are related chiefly to strengthening existing service bundles emphasising the insurance principle.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)222
Number of pages239
JournalJournal of Services Marketing
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2001


  • business association services

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