3 Keys To Maximizing Membership Profitability
So, imagine this… Your site is up and running. (Yay!) You’ve got a set of initial members. (Woot!) You’re making some money. (Hooray!). This worked out exactly like you hoped that it would. Let’s go deeper into the strategies around membership profitability.
Is that where you stop and rest on your successes? No way! It’s time to take things to the next level.
What happens next is that you need to maximize your membership profitability. Primarily, you do this in three ways:
• Churn reduction.
• Creation of backend offers.
• Customer acquisition.
Let’s look at these three profitability factors separately…
1. Churn Reduction
The first thing you need to consider is how to reduce churn (meaning reducing the number of people who drop out of your membership site). Or another way to put it is you need to improve your retention rate.
So, how do you do this? Check out these two ideas…
Create an Onboarding Sequence
One big reason people cancel their membership is because they’re not using it. That’s why you want to create an onboarding sequence of emails which does the following:
• Reminds them of the benefits of their membership.
• Encourages them to start using their membership (such as by specifically pointing them to one resource in the site, building anticipation for it, and then encouraging them to consume/use it).
• Offers a quick-start guide (especially useful for a vault-style site, which can be overwhelming).
Offer Unadvertised Bonuses
Another way to reduce churn is by sending unadvertised bonuses from time to time. This creates satisfied (and delighted!) members who’ll stick around for a longer duration.
You can also send out strategic advertised bonuses. For example, you might set up monthly bonuses and a “graduation bonus” for your fixed-term membership site to keep your customers as members for the entire duration of the training.
Note: See the next lesson for more information about improving retention rates.
Meanwhile, check out this next profitability factor…
2. Creation of Backend Offers
The next way to boost your profits is by creating related backend offers. Indeed, depending on how your membership is set up, you may make the majority of your membership income through your backend offers.
The key here is to create a variety of offers.
If you’re delivering a set of lessons, then each lesson should promote a related offer. These offers could be infoproducts (ebooks, videos, courses, other membership sites), tools (checklists, worksheets, templates, planners, etc.), coaching, or even services.
For example, if a particular marketing lesson talks about how to set up a Facebook ad campaign, then you might promote a set of Facebook ad templates.
Or if a dieting course talks about developing a nutrition plan, you might offer personal coaching to create a custom nutrition plan.
Or maybe a resource in your membership site is about replacing the headliner on a classic car, in which case you pitch a headliner replacement tool that makes the job easy.
Point is, you’ll do best if your backend offers are directly related to whatever piece of content the member is currently reading. You can promote these backend offers:
• Directly within your lessons or other content.
• Inside the membership site (including in any private groups/forums).
• Via any emails you send to members.
Now let’s look at the third factor for boosting profitability…
3. Customer Acquisition
The third item that will improve your site’s profitability is to acquire more customers. In other words, get more members.
Here’s the thing: your content-creation costs are fixed costs.
That means they remain the same whether you have 50 members or 500 members. As such, the more members you have, the more money you make (and the content-creation costs don’t change).
Here are a few ideas to acquire more customers…
Set Up an Affiliate Program
There are plenty of marketers who have huge platforms, which you can leverage in exchange for a nice commission (preferably a recurring commission). For best results, go out and personally recruit the super affiliates in your niche to join your affiliate program.
Create a Referral Program
Your satisfied customers may be some of the best advocates for your site, which is why you’ll want to consider setting up a referral or affiliate program. For example, you can offer your current members free months of membership in exchange for every two paying members they refer to your site.
Use Paid Advertising
Another good way to acquire new customers is via paid advertising. This includes Facebook ads, Google ads, and purchasing advertising on niche sites. Be sure to test and track all your campaigns so that you’re only putting money into profitable ads.
Guest Blogging for Membership Profitability
The idea here is to find high-quality blogs in your niche that accept guest content, and then create engaging content that the publisher is sure to love. You’ll want to create a “useful yet incomplete” post – one that is useful so that readers can solve part of their problem, but one that is incomplete so that it naturally leads to your membership site.
For example, you might create a post for a dieting blog called “Five Proven Ways to Rev Up Your Metabolism.” You’d then provide a link to your dieting membership alongside a call to action. E.G., “If you liked these five tips, then you’re going to LOVE the support and results you get when you join the net’s best weight-loss support group for women over 40! Click here to check it out right now, because we’re waiting to help you create a slimmer version of you!”
NOTE: See Lesson #10 for specific, proven ideas on how to rapidly acquire new customers.
EXAMPLE: Every module of Jimmy D. Brown’s Content Creation University has a reference to one of Jimmy’s other products. People LOVE his CCU membership and, as such, readily buy many of his other highlighted products.
Time for you to think about how you’re going to boost your site’s profitability. Ask yourself these questions:
• In what specific ways will you reduce churn?
• What types of offers will you sell on the backend? (Be specific.)
• How, exactly, will you promote these backend offers?
• In what specific ways will you acquire new customers?
Take a few minutes and work on your membership’s profitability plan. And then I’ll see you in the next lesson…
I’m a Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestselling author, an independent publisher, and serial entrepreneur Connie Ragen Green and would love to connect with you. If you’re new to the world of online entrepreneurship please check out my training on how to sell yourself at Sell Yourself and Your Stuff and learn how to gain an unfair advantage when it comes to building a lucrative online business.