40 Years of Helping Membership Organizations Grow

Rick Whelan, CDM
President, Marketing General Incorporated 


In 1978, a small startup company in Washington, DC, took its first baby steps intent on helping a single association improve its membership numbers.

Fast forward to 2019 and that same company, Marketing General Incorporated, (MGI), is celebrating its 40th Anniversary as the largest association-focused direct marketing agency in North America. With more than 100 clients in 16 states, MGI is a multi-faceted company that has made an indelible mark and grown consistently in size, results, and reputation.

Few organizations in any line of business survive 40 years. In the association marketing world, it’s unprecedented.

Many factors have contributed to MGI’s longevity and resilience: a host of longstanding clients; a dedicated, resourceful staff; and a singular focus on honesty, trust, and keeping our clients’ best interests in mind at all times. In fact, the intertwined numerals in our 40th Anniversary logo above represent the close and enduring partnerships that are a hallmark of the MGI story.

Using time-tested strategies, proven results, custom solutions, and continual testing, MGI has amassed an exceptional track record. Since its inception, we have partnered with thousands of clients and recruited more than 4 million new members, accounting for more than $2 billion in dues and non-dues revenue. And these numbers continue to grow every day.

Although marketing methods and approaches have evolved over the years, what has not changed is the MGI commitment to be the leading authority in the association marketing field. Our annual Membership Marketing Benchmarking Reports are used worldwide and today we offer more services, options, and opportunities than ever. From research and data analytics to creative and production; online, email, and print programs to data design, lists, and telemarketing; MGI is truly a one-stop resource.

MGI would not be celebrating 40 years were we content to rest solely on past successes. As we move into 2019 and beyond, expect to see more product offerings, additional services, and expanded outreach. And as new marketing technologies and tools emerge—some of our own creation, MGI will exploit them to meet our clients’ ongoing marketing challenges.

Thank you for your support and join me in celebrating not only a new year but four decades of continuous service to our association and nonprofit friends.