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Here it is: New American Philatelic Society (APS) Forum  
 

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Valued Member
United States
71 Posts
Posted 04/05/2016   09:01 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add ScottEnglish to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
Cool - Just got my first issue today. Finally joined in Feb and my name is in this month's issue waiting for approval :)


Mike - Welcome to the APS and thanks for becoming a member! I hope you will be with us for years to come. We have a great team and if there is anything we can do, please do not hesitate to call on us!


Quote:
Now, all we need is a letter to the editor in the APS that all 30K members should start posting. (Not sure if this is serious or sarcasm. I'll have to ask myself later.)


We welcome letters to the AP about stamps and other topics. We discussed online forums in our Membership Committee meeting just yesterday. In fact, blame Matt Liebson for making me aware of the SCF.


Quote:
I'm a bit ashamed of myself, not a member yet.


It is never too late to join the APS my friend and I think you will enjoy it.

All you have to do is click here: http://stamps.org/Join-Now and we can get you into this organization today.

If you have questions, you are welcome to contact us here in Bellefonte at 814-933-3803 or you can contact me directly at scott@stamps.org or x. 219 by phone.
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Pillar Of The Community
United States
2474 Posts
Posted 04/05/2016   11:59 am  Show Profile Check tomiseksj's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add tomiseksj to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Thanks for setting this up, Bobby!

A presence on forums like this is an excellent way to spread the word about APS to collectors outside of its membership roll.

Steve Tomisek
APS Representative
Chapter 1591
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Pillar Of The Community
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United States
602 Posts
Posted 04/05/2016   4:44 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add angore to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
In order to attract more members, why does not the APS offer an reduced cost online membership? The US population pays $48 for membership including a printed copy. A reduced dues could attract/help retain members.

Al
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Valued Member
United States
71 Posts
Posted 04/06/2016   08:23 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add ScottEnglish to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Al --

This is the most often suggested topic that comes my way. I did a break down on the numbers to see what your $45 went to support among APS services. Though the retail value would be much higher as a magazine subscription, in dollars, about $10.25 of the membership supports the magazine. The rest of the money supports other member services. Creating an online membership could only be done if we gave those online members access to only the magazine and none of the other services. More likely, we will see a significant shift of already existing members to a digital-only membership which will raise the costs of services for full members or threaten to eliminate services that already exist.

At the same time, our retention rate is about 91 percent annually. The three largest reasons for resigning are: Death, Poor Health, or quit collecting. While I am confident of my abilities in some areas, I cannot overcome those. The most interesting delta is the fact there are approximately 10,000 people that belong to an APS local chapter that do not belong to the APS. Even if we could add just 10 percent of those people, we would grow membership by 1,000 people.

We are not just in the magazine business though and if sustaining and growing the hobby is going to be possible, we have to remain with our original mission of creating a safe place to buy and sell stamps.
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602 Posts
Posted 04/06/2016   09:11 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add angore to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Thanks Scott.

I may have not been clear. Based upon your feedback, my suggestion would be to have a membership with full privileges but online journal from printing/mailing savings.

Al
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Valued Member
United States
71 Posts
Posted 04/06/2016   10:41 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add ScottEnglish to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Al --

I thought as much - but the printing/mailing savings is about $5 per person (if you spread it across the 31,000 members). There is as much cost in content development as there is in shipping. We had a good advertising year in 2015 and my hope is 2016 is equally as good.

The reason I made those other points is to highlight that cost of membership, which has remained constant for nine years and counting has not been a significant roadblock to enrolling or retaining members.

We are in the process of establishing some co-promoted, value-added membership that would allow us to join forces with other membership organizations to allow us a chance to promote our membership to audiences that are not aware of us. This would be similar to the federal credit union membership we just announced.
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2969 Posts
Posted 04/06/2016   10:49 am  Show Profile Check 51studebaker's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add 51studebaker to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Scott,
How has the cost per member remained the same for 9 years when during the same period the total number of members has dropped? Was there significant other cost savings applied during the same time period?
Don
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Edited by 51studebaker - 04/06/2016 10:50 am
Valued Member
United States
71 Posts
Posted 04/06/2016   11:23 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add ScottEnglish to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
The annual dues have remained at $45 a year since 2007 and my goal is to retain that. To accomplish that, staff has been reduced by 25 percent, travels costs have been reduced so that attendance at WSP shows occurs once every three years instead of every year, instituting volunteer assistance to affix face value donated stamps onto envelopes (hopefully you enjoy the creative work from those great volunteers!). In some previous years, even that did not make the budget completely balance - but we did have a cash positive year last year and will work on maintaining that for years to come.

We are working on some areas of potential improvement for operational efficiency and dedicating resources toward increasing the revenue streams. Which we lay out in the strategic plan under Sustainability.
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2647 Posts
Posted 04/06/2016   1:14 pm  Show Profile Check revenuecollector's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add revenuecollector to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Excellent to see Scott participating here. Welcome aboard!

I had an opportunity to meet Scott at CHICAGOPEX back in November. He and I sat at Eric Jackson's booth for about 45 minutes and the three of us had a great conversation. Just yesterday Scott and I were conversing via email about the Stamp Store. That an ED is so timely in responding to email inquiries is great customer service.
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Valued Member
United States
121 Posts
Posted 04/08/2016   08:35 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add DaveG28 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I am also not a member, although I've been collecting for over 40 years...since I was about 10 years old. Always been a lone wolf. I've considered it many times, but have never really investigated doing so (maybe because I was insulted in that other forum when I mentioned there that I was not a member). Anyone want to make the sales pitch to me? What would I get out of it? Is there anywhere on the internet to see a copy of the magazine so I can see what I'd be getting?
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Edited by DaveG28 - 04/08/2016 08:37 am
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512 Posts
Posted 04/08/2016   08:42 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add oldguy to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I will send you a couple of copies, if you would like.
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Valued Member
United States
121 Posts
Posted 04/08/2016   08:49 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add DaveG28 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
oldguy...I would love that , thank you. However, as you can see...I don't have 50 posts yet so I can't send you a private message through the forum. For obvious reasons, I don't wish to post my mailing address here. Here is my email address: dgeisler@bex.net

If you would be kind enough to send me a message, I'll email you back my mailing address. Thank you very much.
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Valued Member
United States
71 Posts
Posted 04/08/2016   08:51 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add ScottEnglish to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Dave --

A membership includes a great magazine every month, newsletter, discounts on books, the ability to sell stamps online and buy and sell at lower prices on the internet and circuit sales. We have the best library philatelic library and we provide all sorts of information online. You can enjoy discounts for online courses and our dealer members offer discounts online and at stamp shows. The APS also recently announced two new partnerships, which allows our members to join the USPS Federal Credit Union and get great discounts on Scott Catalogs through several of our dealers.

Those are some of the tangible goods, let me give two more that are slightly less specific to you, but at least as important: first, our Code of Ethics - the reason we began in 1886 was because stamp collectors wanted and needed a safe place to buy stamps. We vet our members to the best degree possible so that you know when you are doing business with a fellow APS member, you are doing business with someone you trust. Unfortunately, a small number of members have let us down over the years and we have the ability to bring resolution to those issues and help protect fellow members. The other reason is the state of the hobby. I am also a collector of baseball cards and comics and they have gone in two different directions. Baseball cards and manufacturers saturated the market and the value of cards are still not worth what they should be. For a collector like me, it doesn't matter, the cards are my childhood so I cannot put a value on that. But like stamps, every collector needs to keep the hobby and the market strong because you have invested your time, your energy, and your money into a great hobby, but the next generation does not know stamps like we do. Preserving that knowledge is preserving our history and culture, it is educating your children and grandchildren. The average American spends 8 hours in front of a screen (TV, computer, phone) and it's unlikely that number is going to go down. But, they still have another eight hours where they need to be intellectually challenged and there are a number of ways to do it. Stamps provide that on a budget of a janitor or a CEO.

But, I think the members and the organization sell themselves. I am so sure, I am willing to send you a copy of the magazine - on me. Contact me at scott@stamps.org and I will mail you a copy today.

Scott
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Valued Member
United States
314 Posts
Posted 04/08/2016   09:24 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add knuppster59 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
The AP has been fantastic the past few months since Jay Bigalke has become editor. It was good before, but it has made the leap in terms of content and design.
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Valued Member
United States
161 Posts
Posted 04/08/2016   10:30 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add ronv to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I have just rejoined APS after being out of the hobby for a decade and was thrilled to learn that I could get my old # back. APS 125825...
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