Dynamic Communities: Plotting a New Course

Andy J Hafer
Muma Case Review  •  Volume 7  •  2022  •  pp. 001-027
Dynamic Communities was a company that forms and administers Software User Groups. Each group had a thriving membership which shared knowledge and information among each constituent in the community. Active participation by employees of member companies led to stronger competency in the software and eventually higher return on software investment for their employer. Programs and features of membership in a User Group ranged from online aspects (such as interactive discussion forums and downloadable content libraries) to in-person events (including training, certifications, and large-scale conferences). Companies joined in membership, paying an annual membership fee, to allow its employees access to the programs and features of the community.

Through the first twelve years of existence, Dynamic Communities counted on double-digit growth in revenue from membership fees. However, it flattened. As technology evolved and social media became more pervasive, it had become easier and easier for individuals to replicate many of the learning features that made membership in a Dynamic Communities User Group exclusive. Persons found highly specialized information just by working the search engines. No longer was Dynamic Communities able to simply put online content behind a firewall and expect members to pay to access it.

Revenue from membership fees made up about 19% of the company’s annual revenue but was eroding. Dynamic Communities executive team was faced with a dilemma of trying to revise its membership model in an environment of significant change while still maintaining its revenue sources. This case challenges the reader to assess price and product mix strategies.
Strategy, Pricing, Product features, Product Mix, Training, Software, User Group, Microsoft
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