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 two game-changing words: Autoresponder 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 an autoresponder.
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 your autoresponder. Next, you need to get an autoresponder through a service like Aweber.com or GetResponse.com. Simply load up your messages into your autoresponder. Set the first lesson to go out immediately after the customer joins the course. Set each subsequent message to go out on a weekly basis.
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 autoresponder takes care of the rest, leaving you free to do what you want!
Just imagine: You could set up multiple autoresponder-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!
In part 4 of the 5 part series on “How to Create a Membership Site to Generate Passive Income” we are going to focus in on creating real passive income by having Back End Offers.
Until the next one to your success,
In Part 1 of the “How to Create a Membership Site that Generates Passive Income”, you’ll notice that 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 letter.
Example: “In Lesson #3 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!
In part 3 of this series I will be showing you the fun stuff, which is “How to set it and forget it!”