Membership sites “the path for big money”.
So let’s jump right into it.
The first thing you need to think about is your niche and your topic.
Now think about this for a moment…
- Your goal is to get members to happily pay you month after month for content. Obviously, that means you need to Over-deliver with quality content.
- You want your members to feel like they’re getting a steal for the price.
Give your members what they want. If you’re just starting your site, then look to the top-selling products in your niche to see what your target market is already paying for.
But here’s something else…
In order to get your members paying month after month, you need to be able to make them look forward to each upcoming lesson. And the best way to do that is by creating a membership site around a step-by-step process.
That is, your lessons teach your members how to achieve a specific result.
You see, if you just provide tips and tricks for your members, there’s no sense of continuity. Your members don’t develop as strong of a psychological commitment to staying a member, because they won’t have a need to see the course through until the end.
Now imagine having numbered steps and lessons instead. When someone is receiving lesson 10 of a step-by-step process, they’ve made an investment of time and money into learning the process – so they are less likely to “bail” before they’ve received all the steps. Let me give you a few examples of sites that teach a specific achievement or result using a step-by-step process:
- How to start an online business.
- How to write a sales letter
- How to choose, train and raise a puppy.
- How to adopt a child.
- How to home school your child.
Now let me give you an example of what a 12-week online marketing course might look like:
Step 1: Choose a niche.
Step 2: Market research.
Step 3: Plan your sales funnel.
Step 4: Get a domain and hosting.
Step 5: Get an auto-responder.
Step 6: Write your auto-responder messages.
Step 7: Create a squeeze page.
Step 8: DIY product creation – research and outline.
Step 9: DIY product creation – creating and polishing the product.
Step 10: Create a sales letter.
Step 11: Drive traffic – free methods
Step 12: Drive traffic – paid methods.
Notice how each step builds on the previous step. It starts with a member not even having an idea for a niche… and ends with the member driving traffic to a sales letter and making money.
In other words, if the member completes the steps as the course progresses, he or she should be able to enjoy a specific achievement or result by the end of the course.
Note: The above example is a 12-week course. Naturally, you could easily stretch this out to a year or more by creating more steps and more in-depth steps. You could go on indefinitely as long as you kept providing more advanced info as the course progressed.
One final tip…
To keep your customers happy, make sure that they are progressing and enjoying results right from the beginning.
Example: If you create a yearlong course, don’t stretch out the process for a year.
Instead, give the step-by-step instructions your customers need to experience some type of results immediately (within a few weeks or month after joining) and then provide more in-depth instructions as the course progresses.
In short: Satisfy your customers’ needs for instant gratification while still providing the continuity that will keep them as a member.
As you notice before I gave an example of a 12 week course. That was no accident.
You see, most people who think of “membership sites” think of content that’s delivered weekly or monthly… indefinitely. Members pay month after month and the owners deliver month after month.
This works fairly well if you’re running a PLR membership site or similar. But if you’re running a training site, your members are going to drift away if you just give them tips and tricks indefinitely. And they might even bail out a couple months after joining, simply because there’s no end in sight.
So here’s what you do instead…
Create a fixed-term membership site. This is a site that runs for a specific period of time, such as three months, six months, twelve months… or any length of your choosing.
Tip: For best results, create a step-by-step series as described in Part 1 of this article. Here’s why this works…
Imagine if your site went on indefinitely. Someone might join and after a couple months quit. That’s pretty normal. But if the course only stretches out for six months, psychologically the customers will feel better if they just remain a member for the entire six months. They want to see through to the end.
This is actually a Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) trick. Simply put, people don’t like unfinished business. That’s why they’ll even read books they don’t like or watch boring movies – once they’ve invested some time into the activity; they want to see it through to the end.
While just creating a fixed term site created this psychological commitment to your course, you can make the commitment even stronger by building anticipation for the upcoming lessons. That is, from the very first lesson you work on “selling” the other lessons. Like this:
- Build anticipation for the whole course in lesson #1. Your first lesson should include an overview of all the lessons. But don’t just write it out like a table of contents. Instead, write it like bullet points to a sales
Example: “later on below you’ll discover a simple trick that will triple your conversion rate!” In other words, arouse curiosity whenever possible.
- Build anticipation for the next lesson at the end of each lesson. At the end of each lesson you’ll want to include something like, “Stay tuned for next week’s lesson, where you’ll find out the secrets of creating cash-pulling headlines!”
- Build anticipation for future lessons and bonuses periodically. Finally, from time to time you should remind members of upcoming lessons. For example, in lesson #5 you might remind members of a particularly valuable lesson or bonus that you’re offering in lesson #9. Again, write it like a sales letter bullet, where you arouse curiosity and put forth a benefit.
The biggest challenge in running a membership site is retaining members. With a typical membership site, your members may only stick around for two or three months.
But you can quickly and easily ensure that more of your members stay around for six months, twelve months or even longer by creating a fixed-term membership site!
Set It and Forget It!
Quick, what is it about a running a membership site that makes you NOT want to run one? If you’re like most marketers, the idea of being chained to your computer week after week delivering content is a major downside.
When you first got online, you probably had dreams of living the “Internet lifestyle.” You couldn’t wait to get away from the daily grind and job responsibilities. And yet if you run a membership site, it can feel like a job. You can’t see yourself running off to play on some exotic beach when you need to upload content at least once a week or more.
One alternative is to outsource this task. That is, you hire someone else to upload the content every week when you’re not available. But outsourcing comes with it’s own problems – namely, you need to 100% trust your freelancer to upload the content on time.
So if you haven’t yet developed a relationship with a freelancer, you probably won’t feel comfortable leaving your business (and your customers’ satisfaction) in a stranger’s hands.
Now before you toss aside the idea of ever having a vacation while running a membership site, let me give you three game-changing words: Timed Content Delivery
You see, with a traditional membership site (like a PLR site), all members get the exact same content. So the person who just joined today is going to get the same
content this month as the person who’s been a member for a year. Next month, everyone gets the same content again.
Obviously, this doesn’t make sense if you’re running a training site. That is, you want everyone to start with lesson #1 and get the lessons in order. So the person who joins today gets lesson #1. Meanwhile, the longtime member may be getting lesson #50.
The solution? A true “set it and forget it” model, which you can achieve by delivering all the content using a Timed content delivery system.
Here’s how it works…
(1) You create content for your entire course. So if you have a yearlong course with weekly lessons, you’d create 52 lessons. If you have a three month course with weekly lessons, you’d create 12 lessons.
(2) Load your course into the membership software timed content delivery system Then simply set the first lesson to show immediately after the customer joins the course. Set each subsequent lesson to go out on a weekly basis. (we recommend login frequency marketing membership software
(3) Create a sales letter. Now create your sales letter and insert your order button (from a payment processor that accepts recurring billing, such as PayPal).
(4) Drive traffic to your site. Here you can use all the usual methods of driving traffic, such as affiliate and joint venture partners, content marketing, pay per click marketing, social media marketing and similar.
(5) Play golf (or whatever). Now the members roll in and your login marketing system takes care of the rest, leaving you free to do what you want!
Just imagine: You could set up multiple timed content-based, fixed-term membership sites. Just set one up, drive traffic and move on to setting up the next one. Rinse and repeat until you’re making as much money as you want!
Backend Related Offers
When you first thought about opening a membership site, you probably spent at least a little time crunching the numbers.
Example: You did calculations like this: If you have 200 members each paying you $50 a month, that’s $10,000 per month. Or if you open multiple membership sites, charge $27, and get 500 members, that’s $13,500 per month. Or maybe your goal was 1000 members across one or more sites each paying $19 per month, which puts $19,000 in your pocket.
Chances are, however, you stopped calculating when you figured out that final front-end figure. But here’s the thing: That “final” figure only tells half the story. If you’re only taking into consideration your front end profits, you’re leaving a lot of money on the table.
You see, some of the easiest money you’ll ever make is by selling more products and even more expensive products to your existing customers on the backend.
Consider this: If you put up a good sales letter for your membership site, you may convert anywhere from 2% to 5% of your visitors. So if 100 people walk through your virtual door, two to five of them will become members.
Now let’s say you have 100 members paying you $20 per month (that’s $2000 per month). These 100 members are going to be open to your other offers, meaning you’ll likely convert in the double digits. So perhaps you offer these 1000 members a $50 ebook – you may find 20% (20 members) taking advantage of the offer, which puts an extra $1000 in your pocket.
With just one offer you boosted your income by 50%, simply by selling a product to your existing customers! Now imagine if you did this with 500 customers… 1000 customers… or more. You can see the possibilities!
Now in order to tap into these backend profits, you need to offer something that complements but does not compete with your membership site.
One of the best ways to do this is to recommend related products from within each lesson. That is, you tell your members where to get more information on a topic that you’re not covering in depth.
- Let’s suppose your membership site teaches people how to create and market their own products. And let’s suppose you get to the topic of search engine marketing. You may go into depth on the topic of SEO, but refer your members to another product in order to learn more about PPC marketing.
- Your general “how to adopt a child” site might refer members to specific sites or products if they want to adopt children from specific countries, such as Guatemala or China.
- You might refer your dog obedience and training members to a “trick training” book (since you’re not covering that topic in the site).
- Your weight-loss site might refer people to an ebook that covers weight loss supplements, herbs and vitamins in depth.
Another way to make money on the backend is by recommending that your members buy a specific tool in order to complete a task.
- During the lesson on SEO (search engine optimization), you may recommend that your readers purchase a WordTracker.com subscription.
- You’re teaching people how to do build and profit from a mailing list. You recommend Aweber.com.
- You’re teaching people how to repaint a classic muscle car. You recommend a specific store (using your affiliate link) where people can pick up the sanding and painting supplies.
- Your golf site might point people towards buying a specific set of clubs.
There’s a fortune that lays hidden in the backend of your membership site. You can tap into this fortune by regularly making related, complimentary offers to your existing members!
So Let me give you three more life changing words..
Login Frequency Marketing
Making members login regularly gives you the opportunity to make those related complimentary offers on auto pilot, using the software. Relieving you of having to write and send promo emails. All you have to do is give them a reason to login.
Create a Family of Sites
If you’ve been taking this course in properly, then you already know that there’s a truckload of profits waiting for you on the backend of your site. That is, you can make extra money by offering more products and even more expensive complimentary products to your members.
Now, one option is to be an affiliate for related products and services. The better option is to create these products yourself. That way, you keep 100% of your profits.
Here’s what I suggest: While you’re planning your first membership site, you should also simultaneously plan what complimentary products you’ll sell on the backend. And one way to make money on the backend is by creating a family of related sites and linking them together.
- Steps To Become a Millionaire – This is a blog / website were people can get access for free to valueble information on how to create a profitable online business and etc.
- Wealthy Affiliates – Here’s another membership site. This one teaches marketers how to make money selling other people’s products and services.
- SiteRubix – This site ties in beautifully with the first two, because after all you need a main “platform” to start your online business (a website) were your membership site and afilliate products can linked to.
You can see why linking these sites together (cross-selling them on the backend) works.
Most marketers – even if they create their own products – will want to use good quality give away products to increase their lists…Which Wealthy Affiliates allows them to do.
Most marketers will want to learn how to incorporate residual income streams into their business, which Wealthy Affiliates teaches them how to do.
Tip: The advantage of creating a family of sites goes beyond merely having something to sell on the backend. A family of sites also helps you develop your brand and grow your brand recognition. And that means more sales, more customers and more profits.
Now let me give you a few examples of how you can create a family of membership sites around a related niche (or even around a singular topic):
- Let’s suppose you run a health site on the topic of lowering one’s blood pressure. You might also create sites around similar problems, such as lowering cholesterol levels and leading a heart-healthy lifestyle.
- Maybe you run a training site that teaches people how to housetrain their new puppy and teach him basic manners (sit, stay, etc). You might create another site focused on getting rid of problem behaviors such as jumping, biting, digging and similar. Your third site might be for those who want to teach their dogs tricks. You might even create another sites centered around dog agility.
- You run a homeschooling site that focuses on delivering lesson plans and ideas for math. You can create a family of sites on other topics such as science, English and history. Or, you can offer homeschooling lessons by grade (e.g., 7th grade, 8th grade, 9th grade, etc).
When you’re building your first membership site, ask yourself: What ELSE do my customers want?
Do your market research to find out what other products they’re currently buying. Then create a family of sites around related topics. It’s the quick and easy way to tap into the backend profits… on autopilot!
Creating membership sites is quite frankly an art form…Content designed for inclusion to a membership site has to do more than just deliver content.
It has to keep customers active, force higher retention rates and keep members motivated enough to keep them logging in on a regular basis.
Successful membership sites contrary to common belief is not about delivering content…it’s about delivering value. And just as important it’s about keeping members active.
Your goal is to over deliver value without drowning your members or overextending yourself. If people receive too much they may quit and stop logging in or worse cancel their membership simply because of information overwhelm.
It is possible to deliver too much content, but it’s not possible however to deliver too much value
Get someone who understands membership sites to build the right software platform, and detail the steps you need to take to make it an instant success. Choose a software solution that doesn’t just throw you the software and run.
Knowing that just any old software and any old content won’t work with membership sites is why I had the membership marketing cheat sheets written to enhance the Login Frequency Marketing software.
Having a resource that outlines the why we do things this way is much more profitable than just being told how to do something.
Have a look at one of my membership sites
You can get a live example of one of my membership sites in the “Yoga Niche”. Feel free to click around on different links I have into it, and see how it connects with different links.
My Yoga Membership site platform is another site it’s ValueAddon (the back end) with up-sales inside the member area.
My front end website is another site that it’s linked at ValueAddon membership site platform. Here is the link: www.yoga4unow.net
If you need to contact me, or need further information about memberships site, leave a comment below this page and i will reply as soon as possible.
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To your Success!