I apologize for one message across two social networks (this is also being posted on the SMDGA.com
site as well).
Effective late July or early August 2010, Ning (our website hosting service) will no longer offer free hosting services for their clientele. However, this is *not* a "sky is falling" type of announcement...and could actually work out to our substantial advantage over time.
Our website is too large for the Ning Mini service. I also think that the Ning Pro plan is more than we need. Which leaves the Ning Plus plan as our best option of the three. Costs for that plan are $19.95/month (or $199.95/year for a one-time annual payment).
WHAT THE MFA WOULD GET (that we don't have now):
- No Ning ads!
- No ".ning" in our site URL
- Sign-in ability with Facebook, Twitter and other SN services.
- Removal of Ning branding and links
- Up to 25 custom text boxes available for use in the site's homepage and inside its header and footer (can get a bit technical, but trust me, we WANT this!)
- Advanced member controls.
HOW WE COULD PAY FOR IT:
1. Site sponsorship. For the type of site and services we provide, $200/year is peanuts. And with the volume of traffic our site experiences, I have to believe there is at LEAST a handful of DG vendors out there that would be happy to pay $200/year to receive a great deal more exposure to our membership base.
2. Advertising revenue (contracted ourselves). We could contact disc sports (and other) vendors with an interest in promoting their products and services to our members, seeing if they would want to purchase small ads that would appear either on our site template (every page) or on specific pages within the site. We could sell those ads on either a per-month, per-quarter, or annual basis.
3. Advertising revenue (subcontracted)
. There are several online advertising companies out there who will make all of the ad sales and gather ad graphics on our behalf...with us simply being paid on a per-click, or per-impression (ad being displayed in a browser) basis. An example of this type of service in-action can be found on another site I webmaster: www.dynastyguys.com
. The ads you see in the lower right corner of every page and as banners at the top of every article are contracted, and we are paid $1 for every 1,000 impressions. The equivalent of a few thousand dollars per-year.
The MFA Board will need to make some decisions about how best to proceed with these issues moving forward! However, I wanted to post where we are at with the site, as well as a few ideas for how we can move forward.