How You Can Double Your Membership in 2016

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When you are pushing hard to sell new members into your continuity membership program, there’s going to be some natural churn. Some members are going to jump in without any intention of retaining their membership. Other members will require more time and attention than they are worth. However, most membership programs are making mistakes that increase churn over their natural churn rate. This unnecessary churn costs a fortune. Over the last year, many membership marketers have taken me up on my offer to have Denise McKinlay on my team produce membership reports for their program. Denise is an Infusionsoft Certified Consultant and has been producing membership reports since I first started using Infusionsoft in 2005. From pulling and reviewing all of these membership reports over the last year, two big lessons have emerged. First, in many cases, Denise has been able to discover anywhere from $1,500.00 to $8,500.00 in uncollected … Continued

Generating New Members When Changing to a Different Market Isn’t a Viable Option

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Here’s an excerpt from The Gary Halbert Letter, where Gary tells a story that’s become famous within the direct marketing world. Enjoy: “As you may or may not know, every once in a while I give a class on copywriting and/or selling by mail. During these classes, one of the questions I like to ask my students is: ‘If you and I both owned a hamburger stand and we were in a contest to see who could sell the most hamburgers, what advantages would you most like to have on your side to help you win?’ “The answers vary. Some of the students say they would like to have the advantage of having superior meat from which to make their burgers. Others say they want sesame seed buns. Others mention location. Someone usually wants to be able to offer the lowest prices. And so on. “Whatever. In any case, after … Continued

High-Performance Business Insights From Harley-Davidson® Dealerships

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For 11 years, I’ve had the honor of consulting with Florida’s Harley-Davidson® dealers. I’ve conducted ambitious cooperative marketing programs together with training for all departments of motorcycle dealerships (sales, parts, service, accessories and general management.) While it may appear from the outside that the Harley-Davidson® brand is as strong as ever, if you’ve been following the stock price of the Harley-Davidson® Motor Company, you know that it’s down 30 percent from last summer. The dealers I work with in the great state of Florida are among the highest performing in the country. But, even within our Florida dealerships, there are some that aren’t performing well. Would you like to know the difference? I’ll tell you. High-performance dealerships hold their people to high standards. While the best dealerships are not perfect, they hold their people accountable for performance standards. There’s an expected level of productivity for managers, parts counter guys, service … Continued

The Most Common Membership Lie

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I just finished a conversation with a membership marketer. His monthly churn rate is 10 percent. This is the percentage of members who are canceling their memberships each month. When I reviewed the numbers with him, I helped him discover that 60 percent of his members are dropping out within four months. Yes, you read that correctly, 60 percent! And, he didn’t even realize it based on the reports he received. What’s important about this is that now he knows. Until he allowed Denise McKinlay on my team to produce membership reports for him, he thought his retention was fine. Just because you don’t know something doesn’t mean it’s fine. When I first spoke with this membership marketer, he told me he didn’t have a retention problem. He wanted a system to attract and recruit more members. I offered to produce reports so we could see how his current membership … Continued

Don’t take my word for it; shut the back door and see if it works

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What’s more important for you? To recruit more new members or to work on retaining the members you have before you add more new members? Many tell me that they want to add new members now, and then as they grow, they’ll improve their member retention. You know what, in some situations this makes perfect sense. I’ve been working with one of my clients this year on building member recruitment programs. Although his business would be better if he had better retention, we have focused on recruiting new members. After all, there’s no reason to perfect a program we can’t sell. But once you are past the testing phase, then it’s time to improve. Larry Osborne, an expert in church marketing, is famous for saying, “There’s no reason to open the front door until you close the back door.” What he means is that until you are keeping the families … Continued

Do they say “I was a member once” about you?

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Today’s social media gives all of your members, current and former, a megaphone. Fair or not, they post. And increasingly, even your affluent members, especially the ones who have the education and the time, know where to look. Plus, you have the traditional rumor mill. One friend asking another, “Have you heard about that guy who published that book?” “Yeah. Tried his program. It didn’t work for me.” Does it matter that this member never opened your package and doesn’t want to admit that your system is great and the problem is he never worked your system? Not to his friend, it doesn’t.