Stopping the Thief That’s Making Your Members Quit Your Membership Program

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What if you had a thief break into your home while you were sleeping, creep into your bedroom, take your jewelry and cash, and then leave without getting caught? How upset would you be? Would it disrupt your normal life? A thief stole stuff you worked hard to get — including cash from your wallet — and then disrupted the security you worked hard to build. How long would you tolerate someone robbing your home every month? Would you set up an alarm system or cameras? Heck, eventually you’d probably even consider hiring someone to stand guard to protect your family and belongings. There’s a thief in your business, and it’s a thief you’ve grown accustomed to and even tolerate. This thief is called churn. Churn is the rate at which you are losing members each month. Churn is stealing your hard-won members. Every member that quits takes away something … Continued

Make sure you have all of the facts

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What if you kept 85 percent of your continuity members from one year to the next? Most for-profit marketers would consider this to be a spectacular success.  With my association clients, I’d be fired if I produced those poor results. If you are losing 15 percent of your members each year you’ll has none left within 7-months.  You can’t build a vibrant community, a company or a lifestyle if membership is a constant revolving door. Is forming an association the secret?  Not the way most marketers think about it. I was able to transform my membership marketing results within the association world by applying what I learned from Dan Kennedy about publishing content that solves problems for members.  However, too many marketers stop there.  They think content is what drives the continuity sale.  I benefited so much from Dan’s strategies because I was already understood the other reasons why people … Continued

Ascension: THE Source of Membership Profit

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I recently reviewed reports for a client’s membership programs. His company has annual revenues of $7 million. Like many owners of such businesses, he offers multiple levels of membership: a basic level that has about 500 members at $59.00 monthly and a higher level with about 150 members investing $249.00 a month. His average member value for basic is about $2,100.00 while members in the higher level of membership have a value of more than $31,000.00. Yes, that’s right, $31,000! Those members buy a lot more of the products and services his company offers. In fact, this IS where all the profit is coming from. He had no idea. The trouble is this higher membership level has been neglected. There have been few upgrade promotions, and there’s no automated ascension plan. Looking deeper, I noticed that five years ago, when membership in his higher level program exceeded 500, 2 percent … Continued

How are you disappointing your members?

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Most of the people I ask tell me they have a great relationship with their customers. Their customers get great results and love their products. No one wants to believe the opposite is true. Your member churn rate is a direct measurement of the relationship you have with your new members. If you have a high churn rate, you are fostering a weak relationship with your new members. Most membership marketers treat their fulfillment like a series of product purchases. It’s a simple exchange of product for money. When they think about improving member churn rate, they try to provide more product for the money. The amount of product and value you provide is like water; too much is just as bad as too little. You don’t want a flood, and you don’t want a drought. You want to Stop Your Members from Quitting. There is a choice. Stopping Your … Continued

The Cause of Membership Program Stagnation

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In this year’s presidential election, a lot of fuss has been made over the size of a candidate’s hands and the implied size of his … well, you know. Private parts are no longer very personal. Same with numbers. I speak with many membership marketers who tell me their programs are healthy when they know they aren’t. It’s like going to the doctor when you’re sick, but instead of describing your symptoms, you tell him everything is fine. I’m a physician of membership; I’m accustomed to looking at private numbers, keeping them private, and helping to diagnose ways to re-store health. There are lots of myths about growing memberships. One myth is that member churn is natural and necessary. It is natural, but it’s natural in the same way that there’s a healthy amount of sweating, and then there’s the kind of sweating that can lead to heat stroke. It’s … Continued

10X Your Walk Away Money

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What if you could increase the value of your business from $15 million to $120 million within a year? Heck, I know a lot of us would gladly take either value! But if you invested 10 years of your life into building a company, it would be a huge life transformation to get the second value, wouldn’t it? Can you imagine that kind of money? It’s a lot closer than you might think, when you Stop Your Members from Quitting. I have several clients with membership businesses in the $5 million to $7 million range in revenue. With a monthly churn rate (the number of dropped members in a month divided by the number of members at the beginning of the month) of 10-15 percent, those businesses are worth three to five times their annual revenue, about $15 million. A nice pay day. But with a member churn rate of … Continued

56% more revenue, without an increase in marketing

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You’ve been told for years to examine when your members drop-out of your continuity program.  Then, right before the month with the highest member drop-out rate, give them a gift, such as food, to encourage them to retain their membership.  The thinking is that this gift will create goodwill and trigger the Law of Reciprocity so the member sticks with you.  Then, I suppose you’ve “gotten them over the hump” the member will stay with you forever. Turns out the box of cookies doesn’t work.  Neither does more stuff. What I’ve found over and over again is that poor retention at any phase of the membership cycle starts when you welcome your new member. Before I reveal what we did, allow my client, Richard Menneg describe the transformation his company experienced when he implemented a new member welcome system in addition to the other changes we implemented: “Working with Robert … Continued

Double Your Membership Now

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Imagine having double or even triple the number of members in your program. What would that mean to your business? Your income? Your future growth opportunities? This (and more) is entirely possible when you Stop Your Members from Quitting. I have a new client who has 689 members with an 11 percent churn rate. With 11 percent of his members dropping out each month, he will need to sign up 1,589 new members to double his membership in a year. This means he will need to sell, welcome, fulfill and handle all the administrative work for 2,067 members to end the year with just 1,378 members. By lowering his monthly churn rate to a more reasonable 5 percent, he’ll need to recruit only 1,102 new members. If his cost of recruiting each new member is $100.00, this is a savings of $48,700.00. This is huge for him because he gets … Continued

Stop Your Members from Quitting

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WARNING:  This guy’s name is Churn. Every month Churn sucks money from your membership.  How much longer are you going to let Churn suck away your money before you STOP YOUR MEMBERS FROM QUITTING? While Mr. Churn is not a real person, Churn is a massive problem. Every month members drop out of your membership. The rate of member drop-outs is your churn rate. Just remember, each member that quits your membership equals money sucked out of your business. Not just for one month, but for every month in the future because you lose that member forever. Every member that churns is a step backwards, it’s negative growth and another day that your membership shrinks. While Churn sucks your membership dollars it also destroys future product sales, membership upsells and new member referrals. Churn is an evil force that hides invisibly within most membership programs. Few membership marketers even get … Continued

Connecting Your Members to Each Other Will Retain Members for Decades

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There are five benefits that enable you to retain your members, ROI, growth, recognition, mission, and a connection with other members. The benefit my clients give me the most push-back on is connecting their members to each other. I recently had a client ask me, “But if I connect my members, won’t my members just meet without me?” I’ve certainly seen it happen where a group of members revolts, leaving the membership program to gather on their own without the individual who initially brought them together. This happens, but it’s a sign that bigger problems exist and is completely preventable when you build your membership into a vibrant tribe. What you have to recognize is that there are three levels of membership. Every member starts out believing they have a problem everyone else knows the solution to. This is level one. As they implement the solutions you provide, they gain … Continued