James: What’s the one biggest way you’ve scaled your membership?
John: Okay, scaling in terms of membership is a combination of different strategies. Obviously, you can have higher tier type of offers. You can put them into different levels. You can start selling what I call a masterclass, that is at a higher level; you can also have lower ticket items, like you said, where you are selling different things.
So to me and to some of the members that are using 10XPRO, the perfect scenario is a membership site, which is a recurring type of business, where they pay every single month, but then also having some kind of high-ticket item that represents your brand that you can then launch on different times during the year. Also lower-ticket items that you can use for advertising purposes, for example, if you have advertising campaigns, you can send them to those. You sell those as a low-ticket item, meaning not expensive.
Why? Because then that’s how you break even, recoup your costs, and then basically get free traffic for your new customers, because they just purchased that thing. And that you can then use to then offer the membership, or offer to a high-ticket item. But all of those work with each other. So that’s kind of like a great way to scale up.
Obviously, once you have your membership site going and everything’s going, then getting more people into the funnel, that’s really one of the things you need to focus on.
James: That’s what I’ve seen. What’s the biggest way you’ve seen people get people into the funnel?
John: Okay, well you need to expand your traffic sources, or do more of the traffic source that works the best. So if for you it’s social media, then do more of that. If it’s advertising, do more of that. Can you try to allocate more budget?
So the hard part is to find something that works, like you say, an offer that converts. Once you have that, okay, it’s working. Now, how can we do more of that? How can we find more funds? How can we reach more people? How can I be a guest on other people’s podcasts and more podcasts?
Whatever it is, whatever strategy you’re doing, do more of that, and focus on that, instead of doing the mistake that most people make, which is, Okay, I have something that works. Now, let me try to invent something else. I wouldn’t recommend that.
James: I’m going to talk about my own experience here, how I scaled my membership. There’s a couple of important facts. One is, almost from the beginning, I went fairly quickly to 500 people. I started with 65, and then I fairly quickly got to 300 and then 500. And I’ve had more or less 500 people for 11 years.
So you might think, Well, I’m not much of a membership guy. But the fact is, I make more profit now than I ever did, because I’ve increased the rates over time. And even though I’ve got a similar number of customers, I make a lot more because they pay more. How did I start? I actually started by offering my membership as a bonus for people who purchased an affiliate program.
Then I offered it as a way for people to connect and continue on with me after they attended a live workshop, which I sold from stage on various speaking events. So I would go to a speaking event, sell from stage, give half to the promoter, and then run a workshop out of my half, and then I would give people 60 days free access.
And then after that, I actually recorded the workshops and sold DVDs. Remember DVDs back in the day, that little shiny disc thing? And I would sell them for $300 or $400, and I’d give 60 days access to my membership. And I also sold individual products, and I’d give 30 days trial offer, but it wasn’t automatically started. This is very important.
I didn’t automatically start it. I’d give people a coupon to redeem when they made the purchase on any of these things. Because if you automatically start stuff, you’re asking for trouble. That’s called forced continuity, and a lot of people got in trouble with that. But I realized back then I could let people start their own trial, which would then bill automatically. So it was optional forced continuity.
So if I were to summarize all of that into one sentence, which you and I are both saying, John, it’s this, the easiest way to scale a membership is off the back of something else. And the more expensive that something else is, the better members you’ll get, and the longer they’ll stay.
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