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Memberships are popular but are they right for you?


Are you a coach, consultant, service provider, or creative entrepreneur?  If you are, this article will highlight how a membership model product can help you leverage your time and generate revenue for your business.

There are only so many hours in a day and as entrepreneurs, we are very good at filling them.  And that is the problem.

Are you trapped by the dollars for hours model or just so busy trying to keep all the plates spinning that all you really do is work IN your business?  You can’t scale your business if you have no time to work ON your business.

In our business accelerator program, we help entrepreneurs leverage their time so they can buy back what they need to create online products and services. One of the popular ways to do that is with a membership model product.

So many entrepreneurs have grown their business by providing direct, one-on-one services and are maxed out in time and resources. There is no room for them to scale. Many are already at the top of their fee range, so what’s an entrepreneur to do when they reach that point?

To scale your business as a service provider, you must create more leverage with your time. 

The definition of insanity is to do the same thing over and over again and expect different results. ~ Einstein

If you are tired of feeling like a hamster on a wheel in your own business, a membership program might be the solution you are looking for.

There are a few caveats though.  A membership program does require a lot of work, an investment in development, and most often will require money for advertising to create awareness and convert leads to purchasing clients.  To grow your business online, it almost always requires paid traffic.

It is not a build it and they will come scenario.  

This can be a very lucrative road to travel, but it will not happen without some planning, time investment, and money.

So, if you are ready to roll up your sleeves and get to work, there’s a great chance that you can grow your business and make money online using a membership product.

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Membership programs create a recurring revenue model that can help you leverage your time and resources. A typical membership program will provide ongoing access to helpful resources, training, community involvement or products that your target offer wants.  Membership programs are also called subscription-based programs.

Membership programs are not for the faint of heart.  This is definitely a model that you want to take the time to create a strategic plan before you just dive right in. A membership program lives or dies on engagement and new content.  If you don’t have the time to create content now, you won’t have time to create it for a membership program, so planning is key.

You are probably a member of multiple programs yourself.  Think about it: do you have a Netflix membership? Are any of your business tools billed on a monthly basis for access?

Do you belong to Amazon Prime? Do you participate in any online memberships that provide training or marketing resources?

In 2014, American Express Open Forum produced a study citing that 41% of revenue from consumer purchases comes from repeat, recurring purchases.

Having a membership model or subscription model for your business can be very profitable if you do the work necessary to give value and make your member’s lives better.

You are ready to create a membership program if you are willing to commit to your membership for at least 1-year and you have a defined content and engagement strategy.

A good membership program has the following characteristics:

  • A good base of valuable, desired content or product
  • Easy to consume information that makes a difference in the member’s life or business
  • Has a strong, identifiable brand
  • Has definable benefits to being a member
  • Gives access to new content, training, materials or products on a regular basis
  • Has active engagement from the creator
  • Has an online chat, support or forum component moderated either inside of the course or as a Facebook group
  • Easy to navigate user experience
  • Has a large enough target market that you can market to and continue to get new members

A membership program might be good for you if:

You currently have a lot of content and resources that solve the core problems that your business addresses
You have time to engage on a regular basis with your members
→ You want a recurring revenue model
→ You have the time and money to invest in having a membership portal built for your website
→ Your current prospects and customers already consume content or purchase products through other membership platforms so they are accustomed to joining and participating
→ You want to build stronger relationships with your customers
You want to create more brand loyalty
You need a mid-range product to offer
You want to build a tribe

The bottom line:

A recurring revenue model product like a membership program can help you scale your business if you have the following components:

  • A large enough target market
  • Quality content or product that you can continue to provide on a regular basis
  • A simple to use online portal for your members
  • A budget for online marketing and lead generation
  • Time to interact and engage with your members
  • Automation technologies for collecting payment and communication with members
  • A commitment to serve your members for the advertised length of the membership

Membership programs are everywhere. I have no doubts that you are a member of at least one membership program in your personal life or business. Membership programs can be a GREAT product for you if you are a coach, consultant, service provider, creative entrepreneur or small business owner. To be successful with your membership program, start by creating a solid strategy and follow through on all of the steps needed to create and market your membership.

If you believe a membership product is right for your business but you are not sure where to start, email me and I’ll help you find your fastest path to cash with a membership program during a free discovery call.  I will help you identify your next steps + outline your initial strategy to attract members.   

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