Thousands of people died from infections in 1846, while doctors refused to admit they could be spreading disease from one patient to another. Yet when Hungarian doctor, Ignaz Semmelweis, promoted the idea that doctors wash their hands and medical instruments with soap and chlorine between patients he was ridiculed, even after he was proven to be correct. The way we do things gets ingrained, we develop patterns for completing projects quickly. And with the never-ending anxiety from approaching deadlines, it’s a lot easier to get something done, than rethink why and how you are doing it. Over the last 12 months I’ve encountered hundreds of instances of membership programs doing things because that’s the way they’ve always done them. And they’ve showed me, with pride, the onboarding campaigns they’ve created for their newest members that ignore all of what we’ve discovered that generates engagement, retention and increases revenue through upsells. … Continued
While the functional value of your subscription membership is an important element, the key drivers for breaking through plateaus and maximizing subscription and membership growth are all about emotion. How does your subscription solve problems for your members? How do your customers feel about the problems they face? What mistakes do your prospective members make that they don’t know they are making? While its competitors advertise their motorcycles’ features, horse power, and price, Harley-Davidson promotes the feeling of freedom you’ll experience when you ride a Harley. That feeling drives more sales than all the features and price data. Do your promotions focus on what you deliver to your members or on how they’ll feel after becoming your member?[/cs_text][x_custom_headline level="h2" looks_like="h5" accent="false"]2. Your race to maximize lifetime member value begins right after the sale.[/x_custom_headline][cs_text]Too many subscription marketers are focused on what I call “a series of one-night stands.” Once they get … Continued
Your members and prospective members receive thousands of messages a week. Your member reads emails with one finger on the delete key, trying to scroll through the deluge as quickly as possible. How do you stand out, get read, and inspire your member to action? Not by talking about yourself. To everyone in my office, I must sound like a ringtone, constantly going off with the same noise. “Write copy about your customer and what he or she wants; stop writing about you and what you deliver. Write only about how what you deliver helps your member solve a problem in his or her life.” Longtime monthly client Brandon Lewis of Painter’s Academy sent me a copy of an email he wrote to his members. Brandon is a brilliant marketer who helps painters revolutionize their business by generating referrals, maximizing the value of each painting job, and getting repeat business … Continued
I ran into a roadblock with a client this month. How I broke through may help you attract and retain more members. His assignment: Research his target customer for our next conversation. And he did it; he brought three pages of information on the size of the market, age, gender, and reachability. But something was still missing. The information was all analytical, superficial even. It was all based on the image the prospect was trying to portray to the world, instead of what the prospect was really thinking. In one exchange, he told me that all of his members, whose ages range from 40 to 70 years old, wanted the same thing. I told him that, yes, they may say the same words, but the reality is quite different to a 40-year-old than the 70-year-old. Think for a second. Even something as simple as getting out of bed is very … Continued
However, a membership program instantly positions you as an expert in your field, making your communication welcomed by your prospective customers. It makes you a celebrity in the eye of your consumer. And, when it comes time to sell your business, you generate the sales price from your core business and you can sell your membership as well. My longtime client, David Lucca, was co-owner of an investment management firm. His firm worked exclusively with airline pilots, and he was looking for a way to attract airline pilots to become clients of his firm, versus all of the financial investment choices out there. David launched a new stand-alone company, the Airline Pilot Financial Association, to become the marketing arm of his financial management firm and provide great custom created financial resources for airline pilots across the country. I recently interviewed David for my Membership and Subscription Growth podcast. He has … Continued
I just heard the most ridiculous statement from a subscription economy* owner who should know better: “The value of what I deliver to my members drives retention.” The value of what you deliver is less than 20 percent of the reason your member renews or not. There’s a value- and quality-driven brand within the motorcycle industry, Honda. The quality of their product is exceptional. The value for the investment is excellent. Yet, they represent a fraction of the sales that Harley-Davidson generates in the categories where Harley-Davidson chooses to compete. In those categories, Harley-Davidson has more than 50 percent of the market share for their products. Yes, customers buy Harleys more than any other motorcycle, even though Harley-Davidson is the premium priced product. Can you name another industry where the premium provider owns more than half of the market share? In retail, this would be comparable with a company such … Continued
Too many people create a subscription business because they heard it’s a lucrative business model. While it’s true that the membership model can help you scale your company faster, generate long-term stability and enable you to grow a vibrant tribe of thrilled members, generating revenue can’t be your only priority. Instead, when you focus on generating a positive impact on your members lives, they’ll reward you with membership and subscription growth. In a recent interview for the Membership and Subscription Growth podcast, I spoke with Tim Broom, the co-founder and CEO of ITPro.TV. Tim transitioned to a subscription business model four years ago and is set to hit $8 million in revenue this year. What he has done, you can do. Your product may be much different than his, but the keys to his success can be applied to any subscription model. ITPro.TV is, as Tim describes, “a Netflix for … Continued
Passion, customer impact, focus, feedback and service are crucial for maximum subscription and membership growth. For an example, take a look at PopSugar and their subscription box, PopSugar Must Have. While I recommend you subscribe to learn more about building your own subscription program, here’s five “Golden Rules” you can use immediately from a recent interview with Lisa Sugar, PopSugar’s founder and CEO. Continued
When a customer spends $500.00, $1,000.00, or even $5,000.00 and the only “product” they receive is an email with access to a web page, they will likely become disappointed — unless that web page is designed with customer success in mind. A monthly client since May of 2014, Michael Rozbruch has launched several successful products. Up until now, though, they each involved a large shipped deliverable. He just successfully launched a new product for tax preparers called an Audit Protection Plan. It uses the same principal as fast food restaurants, asking, “Would you like fries with that?” It’s a quick and easy way for tax preparers to increase their after-transaction size by selling audit protection to each of their tax preparation clients. The product includes a number of tools the tax preparer must download and use. Rather than deliver these via email, I worked with Michael and a graphic designer … Continued
Customer success determines retention rates in the membership economy. If your member does nothing with what you sell her, she’s going to cancel your subscription.
The old model of leaving it up to your customer to figure out how to get value from what you sell may have worked in the old one-and-done product sale world.
Your membership and subscription growth is determined by how well you ensure customer success. It involves helping your members find a lifetime value in subscribing to your product or service. I refer to it as turning your subscribers into a vibrant tribe of followers. And, it starts with how you attract your them.Continued