Creating and running a membership site is a great way to build an additional income stream and nurture relationships with your target market. It takes a bit of planning and work to set up at first, but once it’s up and running, you can engage your audience with little effort on your part.
Here are the steps to quickly and easily setting up your membership site.
Decide on a topic to focus on.
Think about your target audience. What kind of help do they need? What information are they looking for? How can you help them? Focus on serving them with your exclusive content and choose a topic from there.
Your topic shouldn’t be too general or too specific. Too general and it’ll be generic and hard to compete with others. Too specific and you won’t have many members. The best practice is to go with a niche within a niche.
For example, my membership is called the Public Relations Academy and I focus on one thing: creating an effective publicity strategy. I’m also very specific about my target audience.
Join my mailing list to learn more about this.
Pick Your Membership Model
There are many types of membership models available. You should choose the one that’s most suitable for your goals in starting the site and also the best fit for your members.
Do people pay once and get all access, or do they pay on a regular subscription basis? Is the content available all at once for anyone who joins, or is it drip fed over time?
What is there for people to do on the site? You might include something like a forum where members can share information. Are there different levels with access to different content and features?
Build Your Membership Site
We use Kajabi to run our membership site for the Public Relations Academy. Kajabi has multiple layouts to choose from and you can also create your website on the platform. If you don’t want to use WordPress and hire a website developer, then this is a great option for you. It’s an all-in-one platform that allows you to take your ideas and turn them into a polished, high-value product. Sign-up with our custom link to get a free trial!
If you are just getting started with online courses, Teachable is a budget friendly option! We created some of our first courses on this platform and it’s very easy to get started. In fact, we host the Women in PR North America courses on this platform. There are more than 100,000 creators who use Teachable to share their knowledge. The best part? You can create unlimited courses and students on all paid plans with our link.
You can also create your own using your site’s WordPress dashboard and install a variety of membership site plug-ins. Spend a little time checking out different plug-ins and reading reviews. You don’t need anything fancy or complicated.
Choose one that offers the membership model and features you need.
Whether you’re looking to create a website, blog or online store, Bluehost can get you started with a hosting plan tailored to your specific needs. We recommend the shared hosting option as it’s the easiest, most economical way to get your website connected to the Internet so you can start building it. It’s only $5/month to get started. When you sign-up with our link you get a free domain credit added to your account after checkout. Read our full review of the website hosting tool here.
Create Your Membership Site Content
Once you have your membership site set up, you’ll need to create some essential content. This includes the content for the site itself, exclusive content you’ll offer through the site, a sales page, and other marketing materials.
Make sure your marketing content explains to potential members the benefits they can expect from joining. Focus on writing the best copy possible, as this is what will entice people to sign up.
Once people have a way to join, pay, and access content, your membership site is up and running. Now all you need to do is drive traffic to it and moderate. Focus on creating a wonderful experience and you will benefit from referrals too!
If you are interested in creating a membership site, sign-up for access to my recommended membership resources here and a very special online workshop you won’t want to miss.
If you’re interested in working together, I can help you through my executive PR services at Pink Pearl PR, through a brand strategy session or in the Public Relations Academy. You can download my PR resources and planners to get you started or join my 5 Day Perfectly Planned Publicity Challenge.