Build and grow your membership site in 10 steps

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If you’ve heard that membership sites are profitable, you’ve heard right. they are very profitable.

But… You do not know how to get started, run, and grow one., and you do not have a clear plan for that. That’s where this article comes in.

This is your step-by-step guide to follow to get things up and running fast.

Note: Because this whole website is about a simple, tiny business model, which is the micro membership site, you do not need to over-complicate things.

Note 2: In the following steps, I inserted my personal comments to explain how I built this micro membership site business, so even if the title doesn’t talk about the micro membership model, you should definitely stick with it.

So your mission today is to plan your membership business and for that, you need to pick a pen and a piece of paper and do your homework.

Your homework today:

  1. Read the following steps.
  2. Modify them according to your business needs.
  3. Make your own plan.
  4. Take action, so that you can be up and running in the next couple of days.
  5. Since and repeat to launch and grow your business.

So, let’s dive in…

Step 1: Pick your niche:

There’s no use in building a membership site if no one is interested in what you’re offering, so before you start your business, you need to find out what your market wants by:

  1. Doing research to find out what the market is already buying.
  2. If, you have any kind of following, do a one-question survey to find out what your followers think, want, and need.
  3. Check keyword tools to see what sort of information they’re looking for in the search engines.

Note: Finding out what people are already buying is the best indicator of what they’ll buy in the future. so focus on this step to find out which memberships are popular and in what niches.

What you should do right now:

Do some research on websites like::

ClickBank.com

JvZoo.com

WarriorPlus.com

Even social media like Facebook, Twitter, etc.

Type in keywords like “membership”, and “membership site” to see what topics and niches are selling.

Ps: Check out our other article on How to find ideas for your membership site.

Step 2: Choose your type:

Now that you have, even a vague idea about what niche to pick, you need to decide the type of your membership and how you’re going to deliver the information.

In general, there are three models to pick from.

  1. An ongoing monthly membership site, which goes on indefinitely.
  1. A micro membership site, which ends after a specific duration (such as 3 or six months, etc,)…You’ve already guessed that this is our favorite one, and we’ve built this business around it
  1. A one-time membership site, which is where the member pays once to gain access to the information that solves a specific problem.

What you should do right now:

This step is easy because we’ve already picked the type/model of membership for you… And if you want to understand the why, read the other articles or just take the 5-day free challenge to find out.

Next…

Step 3: Develops a simple strategy:

Now that you kind-of-thought of your membership niche, model and topic, take time to develop your plan further by asking yourself these questions:

  1. Who is your audience?
  2. What do they want?
  3. Who are your competitors?
  4. What are their strengths and weaknesses?
  5. What are your business strengths and weaknesses?
  6. How will you bring traffic to your site?
  7. How will you convert this traffic into paying customers?
  8. What types of content will you give to members?
  9. How will you make money on the backend?
  10. How will you retain members?

Note: Do not worry if you do not have all the answers yet, you’ll figure them out using the following steps.

What you should do right now:

Write down the answers you already have, and any idea you think can help you find out the other answers.

Step 4: Prepare your USP:

USP stands for unique sale proposition.

Your prospects have a lot of options when it comes to solving their problems, so when they land on your membership site they’re going to have this question: “Why should I choose you over your competitors?”

You answer this question by forming a USP (unique selling proposition), which tells prospects what is your offer about and how it is is gonna help them solve a specific problem better than your competitors.

For example, you can mention that:

  1. Your offer is step-by-step coaching that takes the users from point A to Z to solve a problem… Like we are doing with this micro membership site business.
  2. Your offer has a guarantee as we do with our offer.
  3. You have the qualifications and experience to teach… In my case, this business is a membership site, so, it is live proof that I do have the experience in teaching it.
  4. Your membership charges a low price… Exactly like I do with this business.

And so on.

Just be sure that the few lines of your unique sales proposition are something that your prospects understand and want.

For example, my USP is:

Want to generate an extra monthly recurring income?

If yes, then take the 5-day free challenge to build and launch your first micro membership site with free tools and a $20 budget, then, start selling as soon as you have 3 web pages and 2 articles ready

What you should do right now:

Study the UPS I use for this micro membership site business and try to come up with something similar.

Next…

Step 5: Decide your pricing:

In this step, you need to determine how much you’ll charge, so ask yourself:

  1. Is it a one-time payment or is it a monthly membership?… I personally advise to go with the monthly payment, but it must be a low fee one, exactly like I’m doing with this business offer.
  2. How much are your competitors charging for similar content?… They may be charging a higher fee, but, if you haven’t any online business yet, you should focus on building a buyer’s list,.. So to resume it, do like me with this business.
  3. What are your overall income goals?… I do have mine, but that is private.
  4. How many members will you need to achieve these goals?… Again, I do have my goals, what about yours?

Note: Keep in mind that up to 75% of your income will come in on the backend of your membership site (we’ll discuss that later). So if you want to make $100,000 with your membership, as little as $25,000 may come in the form of a frontend membership site offers.

What you should do right now:

This is an easy task, as you should do exactly what I teach in my 5-day free challenge, which is, to price your front offer as low as possible, because your goal is to attract the maximum number of people, then later, offer them something more unique.

Note: They say the money is in the list, so, your mission here is to collect leads emails, and having an email list of buyers who paid you a few bucks is a gold mine.

Step 6: Select your platform:

Next, you need to decide how you’ll set up your membership site, and what sort of tools you’ll use to automate it.

And if you’ve taken the challenge, and bought our front-end offer, you already know what simple tools we use… but in your case, you may need them.

  1. Set up a membership site using a well-known autoresponder such as Amember, GetResponse, Mailerlite, etc.
  2. Set up a membership site using WordPress and a membership plugin… You can do that, but, for me, in my micro membership site, I do not use any membership plugin, but a third-party system that does all the job for me.
  3. Set up a membership site on a private forum or a secret Facebook group.

You’ll also need to choose a payment processor, such as PayPal.com, Stripe.com, ClickBank.com, or an offline one, depending on your market and location.

What you should do right now:

  1. Compare several autoresponders.
  2. Do fast research on membership plugins.
  3. Or, just take the 5-day challenge, then buy the micro membership site blueprint to find out how I’ve built this whole business using free tools and systems.

Step 7: Prepare your content:

If you’ve done your market research, then you know what your market wants – now you need to create content that solves their problems and meets their needs.

So, ask yourself these questions:

  1. How much content do you need? For example, are you creating one set of content, or do you need ongoing content for an indefinite amount of time?… Again, in my case, as I sell a membership that teaches people how to start with 3 to 5 simple web pages with an offer that can be sold with just two articles, let’s say the answer to this question is obvious… But hey, you are free to do whatever you want according to your plan.
  2. How will you create the content so it builds on previous pieces? (This continuity is what keeps people engaged and reading.).
  3. How will you add value to the content? (E.G., Mind maps, checklists, infographics, swipes, templates, etc.)

Be sure to create at least a few weeks’ worth of content before you launch your membership site.

What you should do right now:

In my humble opinion, you should start with a micro membership site, as you can literally start selling using two articles and 3 pages.

So your task now is to follow me, take the 5-day free challenge, and get the blueprint with the 40+ lessons that explain all.

Step 8: Attract and convert:

You need to develop a traffic plan and then start implementing this plan by focusing on one method at a time.

These methods may include:

  1. Installing an affiliate program….PS: I have that implemented in the micro membership site business.
  2. Blogging as social media… Exactly like I’m doing with the useful articles on this website.
  3. Engaging on social media…. Yep, again all the articles on this website will be distributed on all social media related to this business, such as Quora, Reddit, Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, etc.
  4. Purchasing advertising on Facebook and other sites….I’m testing a couple of options to get more aid traffic to this website.
  5. Producing viral content… This one is not easy, but, I’m working on it.
  6. Building your list… Exactly what the 5-day free challenge does.
  7. Running contests… I personally may use that later on… We’ll see.

What you should do right now:

Do not overthink this step, when you’ll have your business up, you will find how to monetize it in more ways, exactly like I do with this micro business.

Step 9: Sell more, make more money:

As mentioned, most of your income will likely come in the backend through more offers or just by using affiliate marketing… Recommending products and services related to your offer.

Note: In the case of this micro membership, after the free challenge, I offer 3 months of paid membership, a blueprint, and even a DONE-FOR-YOU business.

Examples of ways to promote offers on the backend:

  1. Another larger offer as an upsell… PS: I do that with this micro membership business..
  2. Autoresponders recommendations… I do that too.
  3. Membership plugins recommendations…In my case, I’m not doing that, as my business model doesn’t require expensive plugins, and it won’t be very honest of me to recommend plugins to my users.
  4. Web hosting recommendations…I do that.
  5. Affiliate links inside your product... I do that, but only affiliate products related to my business model.
  6. Links within the membership site…Yep, I do that.
  7. Links within your private forum or group.
  8. Offering limited coaching… I do that with my DONE-FOR-YOU business offers.

What you should do right now:

Again do not overthink this step, everything will be clearer when you’ll have your font-end offer ready.

Next…

Step 10: Keep your members:

A big key to making money with your membership site is to retain your members and to that end, you should consider these ideas:

  1. Pick a membership model that has higher retention rates, such as a fixed-term membership site… PS: In the micro membership model I use, it is all about learning from A to Z, how to launch a similar business, and it lasts 3 months only, with the possibility to access all the content in a one-time payment.
  2. Offer regular, ongoing bonuses to those who remain members… PS: I do that by offering my users a discount for early orders.
  3. Surprise members with bonuses and features, such as free webinars, etc..
  4. Focus on giving members something they can’t get anywhere else.
  5. Make members feel like they’re part of something bigger.

In short, create a high-quality site where members feel special and get solutions to their problems.

What you should do right now:

This step is explained in detail in the micro membership blueprint, so, if you got it, you are covered, if you didn’t get it yet, well… Then think of 5 points and come up with ideas to implement.

Conclusion:

So there you have it – the ten simple steps of starting, running and growing a membership site.

Be sure to check out the other articles/guides to get more details about these steps!

What you should do right now:

If you didn’t join yet, join the 5-day free challenge to learn how to build,, launch and sell your micro membership site offer, using 3 web pages and 2 articles.

Now:

Do not overthink things, take action, get a pen and a piece and paper and scratch the steps until things get clearer.

To your success.

Adel, the creator of the MicroMembershipSite.com business.

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