There is a reason why some alliances last for years and others do not. While the competence of an alliance's leaders has a lot to do with its success, another thing that a lot of people don't consider is the beliefs that an alliance lives by. NPO has Francoism, GOONS has trolling, GPA and similar alliances have Neutrality, INT has communism; the list goes on and on. In order to keep membership, you must have a set of beliefs; an ideology, a philosophy, a purpose, a grand cause that everyone must work towards. As an alliance, if you having nothing attracting members other than "protection and free aid", then you seriously need to evaluate your alliance and make the right changes before it's too late.
If you have no purpose as an alliance, no reason to exist, then good luck attracting members who actually want to amount to something in CN. In addition, good luck in amounting to anything in CN yourselves. So if you plan on starting an alliance, or you are currently in the government of an alliance; I hope you heed this advice.