Your Business Could be Stopped Tomorrow, How You Can Prevent It

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What is the one thing that can bring your business to a screeching halt?  I’ve been on the phone with guys who were doing $10 million a year in revenue yesterday, who today are closed, frantic, trying to figure out what to do next. It’s easy to take it for granted once you have it, but it’s the greatest vulnerability in your business. And, even if you think you understand and have great relationships, those can all change.  I’ve seen it a couple of times. If you receive your revenue through credit cards then your business is vulnerable. Most believe they are fine. Their bank is making money, charge backs are low, no one has said anything in a while, what could go wrong? If it’s been a while since you’ve done any investigation then your merchant services could easily be ready freeze-up like a brand new Macbook Pro. I’m … Continued

Are You Overcoming Your Subscriber’s Objections, or Do They Churn?

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I’m often shocked by how few subscription companies consider the objections their customers may have to retaining their subscriptions. When designing a marketing campaign, sales letter, or video sales letter, it’s standard practice to outline all of the objections your prospect may have to buying your offer. This gives you the opportunity to address each objection within your sales process. The simplest way to address this is to think about the reasons your members give when they quit: Didn’t get anything out of it Not enough value Too expensive No time Not for me Each of these are an objection to retention, and in the case of a canceled subscriber, an objection that went unaddressed.  Good salespeople know you have to address objections head-on if you are going to make the sale. If you want to stop your members from quitting, you must address their retention objections head-on. Since January, … Continued

How Many Subscribers Are You Losing to the “Credit Card Statement Moment of Truth”?

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Have you ever looked at your credit card statement and said, “Holy crap, how did THAT happen?!?” when the balance is a lot higher than you expected? I put on several events a year and frequently travel for client engagements, so my typical balance due from new charges is between $25,000  and $50,000 . This is great for accumulating rewards points, but is bad for the checkbook balance. Your monthly credit card balances may be more or less, but it’s easy to lose sight of what a charge means to your customer. Just like you and me, your subscriber often spends more than he expected to spend in a month. When he bought your program and subscribed, he was excited and eagerly anticipated this new relationship. Then, 30–45 days later, he’s largely forgotten about the relationship — except for the sticker shock of the charge on his credit card statement. … Continued

Our Strangest Experience While in Mexico

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One morning in San Pancho, Mexico, we decided to cook our own lunch. This way we wouldn’t have to leave our vacation home, allowing us to enjoy the Pacific breezes and the view. I went to the local market in San Pancho for a couple of last-minute groceries. I brought Samantha as my translator; she just finished her first semester of Spanish at Florida State University. San Pancho is exactly the type of town Disney would create were they creating a quaint Mexican beach town. There are no traffic lights — not even stop signs. There’s one road in with a few dirt roads branching from it. A small market provides most everything you need, including a wide selection of liquor, should you drink it faster than you originally expected. When Samantha and I arrived at the market, she shopped for the fruit on our list while I went to … Continued

Today’s Single Most Effective Technique to Recruit New Members

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Unless you have a sales process that reliably generates new members, there won’t be any members to retain. While a lot of clients come to me because they have retention problems, I’m most often creating front-end marketing systems. When you recruit new members into your membership with the right type of offer, they are much easier to retain. More money is generated for premium-priced memberships and subscriptions through video sales letters (VSLs) than any other sales tool. There are a lot of ways to produce VSLs, from animated hands drawing cartoons, to a live-action person speaking directly to the camera, or, the most popular, a voiceover with words on the screen. For most high-volume marketers, voice over text converts higher than any other strategy, unless there’s something interesting happening in the video. Joe Schriefer has a successful VSL that features himself as a man on the street demonstrating how easy … Continued

Scouring the World to Bring You Secrets on Stopping Your Members from Quitting

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Imagine sitting in a small boat with your family, a “captain” and his helper holding the rudder of a small outboard engine, when a creature the size of a freight train leaps from the water and crashes in the sea in front of you. This is the humpback whale. Turns out humpbacks return each year to Puerta Varrata Bay to mate. So that means it was a horny freight train leaping from the water. We enjoyed the whales. When they surfaced for air, they shot a Yellowstone Ole Faithful Geiser of water from their blow holes. Their lungs must be huge. Then they’d sporadically  disappear only to reappear, leaping out of the water. Other times they’d disappear below the surface and would be gone forever, leaving us at the surface to bob up and down in the waves of the Pacific Ocean. This trip was courtesy of my clients Bo … Continued

The Fastest Way to Grow Monthly Recurring Revenue

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I knew it all when I was 28 years old. What’s better, I could do it all as well. But before my 31st birthday, I was completely burned out.  Although I earned a master’s degree in accounting with an emphasis in taxation from Florida State University, and passed the CPA exam to become a CPA, I only practiced as an accountant for three months. Then I took a job as a bookkeeper for a company that consulted with associations. Within six years, I bought that company. When I purchased what became Membership Services, Inc., we had 20 association clients. This was in 1999 when AskJeeves.com and Yahoo.com started to become popular, and Google was on the horizon. Up until these search engines came out, if you wanted to know something about your profession, or any industry, you contacted the association. These tools diverted all of those questions away from associations. … Continued

Your Member Has 34 Reasons to Quit Your Membership — What are You Doing Today to Stop Them?

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Your subscriber member has a new reason to quit every day. Even if you send an email each day, your member may only read that message for 10 minutes. This means you have 10 minutes each day to stop your member from quitting. Your member has 23 hours and 50 minutes each day to find a reason to quit. Every charge on the credit card statement is a reason to quit. Every recurring invoice via email, another reminder to quit. And every time another offer comes along that may be more interesting, it’s yet another opportunity to quit your subscription. A member could quit without it having anything to do with the quality of your product or service. And yet, it could be that your product is poor and systematically encouraging members to quit. One Sunday afternoon, while watching NFL Red Zone on TV with my son, I was reviewing … Continued

Your Prospective Member Doesn’t Want Your Shit: THIS Is What He Does Want

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In the last five weeks, I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to review more than 27 membership and subscription offers for my clients. These have been for financial publishers, business opportunities, subscription boxes, monthly newsletters, magazines, SAAS, and even one political organization. The consistent problem I’ve had to explain 27 times now is that there’s no transformation. No one is wandering around the internet hoping to find 8 hours of online video courses to buy and watch. You’d have to pull up the YouTube app up on more than a thousand tablets and watch all of them simultaneously, 24 hours a day for 500 years to watch the videos that are already on YouTube. Plus you’d have to add about 60 tablets with videos running to keep up with the videos that get added each day. And this is just on YouTube. It would take me four months to read … Continued

Stopping Your Members from Quitting and Growing Monthly Recurring Revenue as Quickly and Efficiently as Possible

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The whole time my wife and I were training for the Boston Marathon this April, we committed to diversifying our workouts. Our goal was to enjoy running Boston, then begin training for a triathlon. At the time, this sounded really prudent. Rather than running 40–50 miles a week in marathon training, we’d swim a few days a week and also ride our bikes. As in most new ventures where you don’t have much experience, this was naive. We started our triathlon experiment by registering for a race. Nothing like setting a deadline. The only problem? I didn’t know how to swim. I’ve been in the water all my life, but not freestyle swimming where you breath between strokes. I’d always hacked my way through. And I never swam for 400 meters at one time. With the triathlon quickly approaching, I jumped in the pool and started swimming, badly. I couldn’t … Continued