How to Build a Successful Membership Site


All the way from Mucosal upon Tynan Yorkshire England. Mike What an absolute pleasure. It is to welcome you to the show and thank you for being this week's guest expert and mentor. Thank you for having me on the show. What an introduction. I love that all the way from Newcastle England. Well we gotta put you in the right context because otherwise people might think you're just next stole but since we're an international podcast and I love it that we interview people from all over the world. Mike. Let's get down to basics. What exactly is an online membership site? I looked at your frame that as getting basic because this is a. It's a funny question. Actually because the term membership is just so broadly applicable net flicks is a membership local associations. Aw memberships seal allow those types of businesses have online elements but in the online business world when people talk about membership typically. What they mean is some sort of combination content and community and usually the content. Is Ill learning? So it's usually educational content on a specific topic. Usually run by a recognized expert or authority in a field. A mass usually supported by some form of community so everything from a discussion forum by private to paying members through to private facebook groups and so on and so generally there's all sorts of Mina variations of that model but it's usually a combination a learning with community what you pay for access to those education materials and also a little bit of access to a particular experts. Aurthority that you follow and you want to lend from. How do we know when it's the right time for us to create membership site and even if it is the right time? How do we know that it's what we should be doing much of a as down to knowing your audience and actually speaking to audience so if in hearing that you're thinking well what what audience than that's probably a sign that it's not yet time we always recommend people built some sort of following online and by following really you want that to be people on an email list so people who maybe visited the radio book by? Noyo audience our office so they've Regio Book that maybe visited your website. Hops you publish articles all your podcast on Dave. Subscribe to your email list because they want to hear more from you. That is generally what you want online following and I would say once you got a few hundred people who are demonstrating a desire to him on to learn more from you beyond what they've read your book beyond what they've read on your local listened to on your podcast. That's usually a sign up. The timing is right you also needs to look your mock in general and what sort of problems exist out there. That either aren't being solved by the books by courses by online programs. Oh just on being solved either extensively not all in a way that reflects kind the current state of your particular industry. It's really marrying a demand and the need within your market with a following that you have built up whose needs allying with and where you can serve them further within. So can I know my membership? I think if you haven't got a following usually you're going to find it a lot harder because you can have the best membership in the world but if you've got nobody to promote a two and you haven't got a kind of a focus group in sums of an email list you can get feedback from. It is going to be much tougher. My. Let's say we feel that it's the right time to start a site now. Let's dig down to the basics about. How would we actually go about getting started? Wow that is a another big one I really. I think the first is talking to your organs really drilling down into the coal problems and it's important that emphasis on the word comb if you ask a bunch of people. Hey you know what you need help with right now. China's AW allowed. The answers will be fairly superficial. Don't actually get to the heart of problems. They are having what obstacles they are facing. One of the goals. What are they designed? What's the bigger picture for those people really really isolating? The problems that you can solve I think is the first point and I was free so says a lot of ideas there to flesh out of viable idea full. What could become? You'll membership committee next stage of that really is to validate your market by selling them. Something so the May have already bought one of your books if not try and sell them your books. If you can't compel people to pay ten dollars fifteen dollars for a couple your book save. Go five hundred people on a name list and not one of them is willing to work with ten bucks for one ago books then you probably going to struggle to sell them a fifty dollar a month membership. You kinda need to validate the market both in terms of do people how problems that I can solve. So that's the first two is the solution that I could provide to them a good fate three. I compel these people to actually put the hand in their pocket and pay me to solve their problems and the best way to build a piece of the equation is by selling them. Something smaller I determine if they were buying market to determine whether you even like selling things online to this audience and to verify your understanding of the problem and solution match is actually accurate. That idea validation is definitely the most important step before you. You even get into looking at what you'll membership by consists of and how you might handle things on the technical. And all that Sorta Mike one of the things that POPs into my mind is that people are not necessarily sure what that core issues are frustrated about certain things or they feel. They have certain problems but they may be superficial to would actually the real issue is. What are your thoughts on that? You've got to ask them more questions. I can't remember if it's six sigma with the idea of a five wise. I think this is completely ripping from memory but the notion that you have to ask at least five. Why questions to probe deeper and deeper deeper was your number one problem right now and someone can give you the answer. Okay well why is not something that as impeding your progress and from that answer Biz? Another Y and there's another white and you have to keep probing Rothman taking I onto that again now. Obviously that requires more than just kind of a blanket. Approach TO GATHERING FEEDBACK. It requires more than simply sending an email out your list saying complete the survey or hit reply to they say mail and tell me what the number one finger struggling with right now is arranging to get on the phone. Get on a zoom coal. Get ON SKYPE WITH FIVE. Six people who kind of match the profile of what you believe to be your ideal customer your ideal member and having those conversations having those deeper conversations and asking questions and listening not leading them towards essentially kind of just giving you what you want to hear but really gets to the heart of it you say. You're thinking of starting up a membership to help aspiring office to keep a topical example. Then you might be looking for feedback on obstacles. People are facing and getting their book south on so you know somebody might say okay. Well I'm with my at just get a finished on. I really struggled with writer's block fantastic song points to be able to just probe deeper and deeper and deeper and deeper to find where those routes problems are and the more of these conversations you have. You would imagine certainly if you've kind of got consistency amongst the people you're attracting your old. You'll start to see patterns emerging from that you'll have a wealth of information to them build on when it comes to figuring out what the real struggles what the real obstacles. What the real things get in these people's way and how can I create something that takes them through that journey guessing through those obstacles ensembles

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