Pay for WHAT!?

Ok…

When going through some files I perused the AMHA file I have. Inside I found that I could sign in online the AMHA for exclusive content. Right.

So I just got online to check it out and voila! Exclusive content so long as I pay a daily fee! Maybe it is because I am under a lot of stress or what not, but that is wrong.

I have to use my AMHA membership, which I have already paid for to get exclusive content which I have to pay for? Make sense?

Also instead of simply asking for my AMHA number they ask for “User” and “Password” both of which are the same. Makes positively no sense!

Can someone explain this to me? Or is my brain to small to see the bigger picture?

24 Responses to Pay for WHAT!?

  1. colwilrin says:

    empressive,

    The only thing under “members only” that requires payment (that I am aware of) is the online registry (noted as “online registry access”..or something similar). That gives you access to electronic record of all registered morgan’s pedigree’s, ownership record, show record, and progeny. This info was previously available for purchase in a book, but was put on the system a year or two ago, and requires a user’s fee.

    Once you have typed in your AMHA number and password, you should be able to click on the other links for things such as meeting minutes, audio tapes of meetings, etc…

  2. leslie says:

    Can you access the registry without being a member? I’d love to look up history on my horse and other Morgans I’ve known, but it’s really the only perk of AMHA membership that interests me, and isn’t worth 70 bucks.

    I wish membership was more affordable. I thought about joining this year, but I couldn’t find a good answer to, “what’s in it for me?” I don’t buy, sell, breed, or show on the Morgan circuit. $70 wouldn’t be so out of line if the magazine was included, I guess. I haven’t been a member since I was still considered a youth.

  3. empressive says:

    Thanks Colwrin.
    I really did not understand the signing in bit and all.

  4. blythewood says:

    I just returned from the quarterly Board meeting in St. Louis and saw your question about access to the online registry. A new software program for managing AMHA business and web site activities is under development now. This new software was (and is) an absolute necessity since the one being used currently has no provision for support in the near future. We have recently entertained the idea of having the online registry available to non-members, and the concept is endorsed by the office and the board, but the service cannot be provided until the new software is completed and loaded. — Kathy

  5. StacyGRS says:

    personally, i have no issue with it being a members only perk…there aren’t alot of them and that one, IMO, would be a good enough one to encourage some to join, but…I think it should eaither be free to members w/ their membership, or ALOT more affordable that $90.00/yr for access. I think we’re missing the boat having it not available. I know people that are members of ASHA and AQHA (ASHA has free access to members and AQHA gives each member a certain number of “look-ups” for free per month) that go on out of curiosity and play around. People find siblings to their horse or look up their favorite horses and see their breeding. All of this leads to interest in breeding and sales. ASHA has a virtual breeding feature that allows you to “see” what a cross between 2 horses would be like. We all know that there’s no telling this, but, what a FUN concept to get people interested in breeding!!!!! I think we need to encourage people to spend MORE time in the horse world…even if it is at their desk via the website…to keep them in this!
    Stacy

  6. nightmusicfarms says:

    Boy, I am 100% in agreement with Stacy on this one. We really miss the boat by not reaching out in every possible manner to draw people in and get them “dreaming”.

    I really appreciate the changes taking place in the Association, particularly in terms of outreach communication, updates and so forth. I do think, however, that we have a long way to go in terms of external marketing and sales promotion. We also need to have a laser like focus on “winning back” people who have dropped their membership or magazine subscription.

    I can offer one small example of missed opportunity. I subscribed to TMH for over twenty five years and advertised heavily in the magazine when standing my stallion and I mean heavily as in thousands of dollars. I recently dropped my subscription all together and have never received on single follow up or comment as to why I might have stopped it. In fact, I have actually had the conversation with a few board members and employees, just to ilustrate a point regarding customer satisfaction and retention. Still no response.

    This has nothing to do with me, other than the fact that it is a useful example. Nearly every company has some form of customer tracking and follow up which can be as simple as a form email sent out to people in similar circumstances, reminding them that they are valued and asking what steps can be taken to win them back.

    Again, not a thump to anyone, just suggestions for further progress.

    Susan

  7. IED says:

    Why is straight MEMBERSHIP in the AMHA so cost prohibitive anyways? $70 for an adult membership?! There’s not a lot I get out of being an AMHA member, I gotta say – other than I know I’m supporting my breed association.

    TMH is boring to read, in my opinion, so I won’t order the magazine. I’d much rather spend my $ on the Connection or even the Saddle Horse Report.

    The only thing I can think of in regards to AMHA is that the registry changeover fees are cheaper (good if you’re buying/selling horses all the time or registering horses, I suppose) and I don’t pay the non-member fee at Grand National. (which is what, $30 or something?) At least the USEF membership pays for itself in non-member fees, if you show (which is the only reason you’d get it anyway), and you get some membership perks and a magazine! Not to mention it’s a heck of a lot cheaper…

    I just don’t quite understand it, I guess.

  8. blythewood says:

    Stacy,

    Although details have not been worked out yet, non-members will not pay the same rate for access to the online registry as members do. We don’t have the option of doing test crosses because the software does not have that provision. I can’t say whether it could be something added someplace down the road, but it isn’t a feature that can be offered at this time. These features require a substantial investment, and the programming for the online registry was a $20,000 investment.

    Although some registries offer free access to their records, not all of them are real time and there are some that charge members rates similar to those of AMHA to access their database. We provide 5 days of free access to each member annually. – Kathy

  9. blythewood says:

    Susan,

    If it is acceptable to you, I will pass your comment on to magazine staff and the Media Steering Committee chair. – Kathy

  10. blythewood says:

    Dear IED,

    Membership dollars support many programs for youth, promotion, and membership services. The membership rate was increased a couple of years ago in response to increases in several operational costs.

    “Free” magazines are actually far from free for many of the organizations that provide subscriptions as a member benefit. For instance, advertising rates in Equestrian magazine are $4740 for a full-page color ad and $2980 for a half page color ad. America’s Horse, the “free” magazine from AQHA is an astounding $12,000 for a full page color ad and $7900 for a half page. Back cover in Equestrian magazine is $6600; the same spot for America’s Horse is $14,000.

    The magazine has received many notes of praise over the past several months; more and more readers have told the office that the magazine is beautiful in its set-up and interesting in the variety of topics covered. However, if you don’t find any of the articles in TMH interesting, what topics would be of interest to you? – Kathy

  11. StacyGRS says:

    I’M GLAD TO HEAR THAT THINGS ARE BEING WORKED ON. I UNDERSTAND THAT THE CROSSES IS A PARTICULARLY LARGE REQUEST (BUT STILL ONE THAT I THINK WOULD BENEFIT US IN THE LONG RUN:)BUT I REALLY THINK THAT A SMALL FEE TO GET ACCESS TO THE REGISTRY WOULD BE FAIR. I HAVE NO PROBLEM MAKING MEMBERS PAY MORE FOR IT, OR, BETTER YET, HAVE A WEEK TRILA PERIOD TO GET THEM HOOKED, OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT, BUT I THINK MEMBERSHIP SHOULD AFFORD YOU THE ABILITY TO LOOK SOMETHING UP ON THE WEB. JUST MY OPINION AND I KNOW THAT IT ALL COSTS ALOT…I JUST THINK THAT LOCKING PEOPLE OUT OF IT OR PRICING IT SO HIGH IS CUTTING OFF OUR NOSE DESPITE OUR FACE. IF THE FEE WAS $30.00 I’D DO IT WITHOUT RESERVATION, BUT, $90.00 IS MORE THAN I CAN JUSTIFY. I BET IF IT WERE MORE AFFORDABLE ALOT MORE PEOPLE WOULD DO IT AND IN THE END THE MONEY WOULD BE THE SAME OR BETTER AND WE’D GET PEOPLE SPENDING MORE TIME MESSING AROUND IN ‘AMHA LAND’ THAN DOING SOME OF THE OTHER ACTIVITIES THAT BITE INTO OUR MARKET.
    STACY
    PS..SORRY ABOUT THE CAPS!! NO CHOICE:(

  12. leslie says:

    Advertising rates may be higher for Equestrian and the AQHA magazine, but I’d imagine they have much, much higher circulations. If you break it down to what advertisers are paying per reader, is it really that much more expensive?

    I understand that membership fees are paying for the AMHA’s programs and services, but at the end of the day, someone like me (not a pro, not a breeder, not buying and selling and not showing much on the Morgan circuit) needs to have a reason to drop 70 bucks and I just can’t find one. I think the AMHA has a lot of great services, but if I have 70 spare dollars to donate to a cause I support, it’s going to be something like a local horse rescue, not a breed registry.

    So I guess I pretty much agree with IED on this one (though not about the magazine…I think TMH’s current direction is more interesting than the magazines that only cover the show world.)

  13. nightmusicfarms says:

    Hi Kathy:

    Absolutely, feel free to pass it on. Please make sure they all understand how much I appreciate the efforts they have made and it is not intended as I said, as a “thump” to anyone.

    My professional life is sales and marketing, so these types of things are always of interest to me.

    Thanks.

    Susan

  14. IED says:

    Well, as a show person, I LIKE the magazines that cover the show world and concentrate more on articles having to do with showing, breeding, useful information, etc. Nothing could possibly bore me more than reading about trail rides or colorful Morgans (and that’s absolutely no offense to those of you that do those things; I enjoy both trail riding AND colorful Morgans, but not reading about them). I’ve tried to pick up TMH a few times in the past couple of years and every time I read them, the show coverage is small and incomprehensive and I find the trail/colorful/etc articles everywhere… I’d just rather spend my money reading about what I enjoy, I guess. Plus, not a lot of people advertise in TMH anymore, and I like to see all the advertisements. It’s nothing against TMH… I’m sure there are a lot of people who don’t subscribe to the Connection because of the same things – they don’t want to read about horse shows. :)

    You can bet that little Janey Doe showing her Morgan on the open circuit is goign to take one look at that price and go ‘no thanks’.

    Like Leslie said, I get that the $ is paying for AMHA’s programs and services. But frankly, unless you’re breeding or heavily involved in the industry, what is the point in joining? What does the average horse owner get out of it? There are awards for open competition, you say… why not have the people who want to go for the awards pay a nomination fee, like 99% of the other breed associations do it? Why is the entire membership paying to support that?

    For comparison’s sake, membership in the AQHA is $40-$45 (45 if you’re an ammy). The APHA is $35. The Arabian Horse Assoc is a mere $25. These are all adult prices. Why is the AMHA so much more? I feel that the AMHA is losing membership because of these prices, which is evidenced by Leslie’s post on here. Janey riding her Morgan Dobbin isn’t going to plunk down $70 to join her breed association if she’s just larking around in the backyard or trail riding for fun with her friends. On the other hand, if Dobbin were an Arab and the price to join the association were only $25, I bet it’d be another story.

  15. empressive says:

    Oh.

    This thread is like that giant bean stock from James and the Giant Bean Stock.

    Onto more professional things…

    I believe there are many things that lend to the need for a higher price. We are a very small breed, with more horses than people in the breed. We are trying to compare enormous breeds like the AQHA & APHA to a very small breed.

    They can charge less because there are so many people. Now granted there are probaly things that we could cut with these economic times. That would take some discussion, though. There must be communication!

    Well that is all my brain could come up with. At least for now. I will bother you guys later! LOL

    Oh, and Blythewood! Yup. If you want to toss ideas out there for feedback concerning the AMHA. This is the best place! Everyone is really cool without being mean. So thanks and good luck!

  16. Chris Nerland says:

    I don’t think “what’s in it for me” should be the criteria for support of the AMHA and the Breed Journal. We should support them because without them, the breed slowly disappears, as AMHA will have to eventually cut back to simply registering horses and sending out DNA kits. Is that what we really want?
    The AMHA and the Breed Magazine have to provide service and information to all the breed members and cannot just cherry-pick the high dollar advertisers and target one group of owners. These owners and advertisers should realize that they are starving the breed roots, while they pick the fruit off the top of the tree in the magazines that cater only to their particular interest.
    We support the AMHA and the Magazine because without their continued existence, the breed has no future as a distinct breed. $70 to help maintain a viable organization is cheap at the price.
    Gosh, I have heard price comparisons from AQHA and Arabs for 30 years. It is apples and oranges people. Maybe if more people joined, we too could see a reduction in some fees. Instead, they are fleeing to save a few dollars. I view the AMHA membership and the Morgan Magazine renewal each year in somewhat the same manner as taxes. To paraphrase Oliver Wendell Holmes: Taxes are the price we pay for civilization. AMHA Membership and Morgan Magazine subscription are the price we pay for the continueing existence of the Morgan Horse. The question is, do we value them enough to support the breed or are we along for a free ride?
    Sorry about any hurt feelings, but it has greatly distressed me to see the Magazine shrink in size, even as the quality continues to improve while the show contingent (except for some loyal and very much appreciated farms) abandon the magazine in droves. The people who have the most to gain from continued viability of the breed and its promotion (who are you going to sell to when there are no more youth clubs or sponsored shows?) have essentially turned their backs on the Morgan Horse magazine.

  17. jns767 says:

    Perhaps I’m the odd one out here, but I prefer the Morgan Horse magazine to the Morgan Connection. I only wish the classifieds were still present :).

  18. Flmorgan says:

    I agree with you Chris. The Morgan horse is a versitile breed and The Morgan Horse magazine has to cover all disaplines. what if there were no Reining, Carriage, Hunter, Dressage or youth Competitions at Nationals? I too love the Morgan Horse mag. I get the Connection and Advertise occasionally in both Magazines but I love the stories in the Morgan Horse.We have the best breed. We need to get behind AMHA and help to promote our horses before we don’t have a breed to promote. This also goes for many who are the Officers and Directors of AMHA. Too many self serving individuals running some of our programs.Too worried about promoting their own intersts. Even at Nationals our Premeir Show, only certain people get their pictures in either the magazines or on the TV clips that air between show times. If your not in the front barns and a big sponsor you hardly get noticed or even welcomed. Sad. We will continue to support AMHA , but as a organization we really need to wake up and realize that new people are the future of the breed and new young Trainers and their clients need to feel welcome. Somewhere we have missed the boat and that is why other breeds have run by us.

  19. nightmusicfarms says:

    Hi Chris:

    I agree with a great deal of what you write and think you make some very good points. My original post had nothing to do with TMH vis a vis a competitor, but rather, how it could be a more competitive product by simply practicing good sales and marketing principles.

    I also agree that the various areas the magazine covers are of enormous interest to the general breed audience and I appreciate them very much. I am not convinced that running the magazine as a monthly offering dependent upon advertising is the best solution and often suggested that we may be better off to have it be a quarterly breed journal included with the price of membership.

    I do not agree that TMH is the best venue for show advertising and I think tha TMC has that avenue locked up and deservedly so. I think any show advertisedr needs to think long and hard about how to get their best ROI and I persnally don’t think TMH wins that bet. That doesn’t lessen the appeal on a general basis and in fact, I am sure many readers would rather not wade through show ads to get to items of interest.

    I also do not agree that advertisers should feel compelled to put their hard earned dollars towards any journal due to a sense of obligation. These magazines need to demonstrate merit and stand on those merits, at least in my opinion.

    Good post.

    Susan

  20. leslie says:

    I might be remembering incorrectly, but I thought it was just a few years ago that general membership was something like 30 or 40 bucks, which seems reasonable. But if comparisons to other associations’ fees have been going on for decades, maybe I’m wrong?

    I realize no one over at the AMHA is getting rich. I think they have very high operating costs and set the membership fees accordingly. But $70 isn’t “a few bucks” to me and I like I said, it’s simply not the most worthwhile cause for a charitable donation. My decision to not join is primarily financial. I have no beef with the AMHA and I like TMH.

  21. Carley says:

    blythewood-
    how do you access the 5 free days?

  22. blythewood says:

    Susan,

    I checked on your comment about not receiving any follow-up when you did not renew your magazine subscription. Julie Broadway is going to put the question to the magazine staff, but she told me that a notice usually goes out to the subscriber shortly before the subscription runs out. Then another one goes out a short time after the subscription does expire. She will provide the specifics of these notices after checking with staff. She does not understand why you did not receive the second “Did you forget to renew?” notice, but will try to find out more for me.

    Kathy

  23. blythewood says:

    Carley,

    The 5 free days of online registry access are available by going to the Member’s Only side of the web site, click on “Online Registry Access”; accept the terms of service; click on the link “Online Registry Access”; then log on with your membership number and password. If you don’t know your number and password, email or call Erica at the office. The days of free access must be consecutive.

    Kathy

  24. nightmusicfarms says:

    How funny, Kathy. I don’t think I missed it, but it certainly could have done so. Thanks for checking.

    My real point was just from a sales and marketing perspective in terms of customer retention. I think we could do more along those lines and with relatively little time and effort.

    Thanks again.

Leave a Reply