As soon as I see the envelope in the mailbox a feeling of dread comes over me. Ugh, the credit card bill. A month’s worth of dining out, gas purchases and a “little” splurges summarized in one package.
I open it up with trepidation and look for the balance. Ahk! It’s A LOT more than I expected. What happened? That’s a lot of money to pay! Is there anything here that I can return?
Have you ever felt surprised by your credit card balance? You opened your credit card statement, check out the balance due and, then there’s the “Holy crap!” moment. Yeah, me too.
What’s the first thing you do? If you are like most, first you check to make sure all of the charges are valid. And, if there’s something you don’t recognize perhaps you ask your spouse about it. Then, as a team you try to figure out what you can return to reduce your balance due.
Imagine if you will, your customers have a similar reaction to their credit card statements. They open their statement, are often shocked by how much they spent and then they look for anyway they can reduce the amount due.
What happens when one of your sales shows up on your customer’s statement? You did a lot of hard work creating a sales page, perhaps spent months creating an awesome video sales letter. Put painstaking care into every word on your order form. You made sure the whole system worked perfectly, was emotional direct response copy and it worked! You launched and you generated sales. Yeah!
But did you put that much care into the communication the new member receives during next 30-45 days? Is your member going to be as excited about their purchase the day their credit card statement arrives as the day they watched your video sales letter and make their buying decision? Probably not.
I call this the “Credit Card Moment of Truth”. Congratulations, you made a sale. You are a marketing genius. But, then, just a few weeks later your customer can’t remember placing an order. Or, doesn’t remember why? And, even if he does remember making the purchase, he can’t sell his wife on why this shouldn’t be canceled and refunded immediately. Lost sale. Refund. Canceled member.
With credit cards today the sale isn’t over at the time of transaction. You’ve got to maintain your new member’s excitement and optimism for another 30-60 days until the transaction has been paid for. And, for all of your monthly subscriptions you’ve got to keep your member excited each month or you’ll be on the chopping block. You will be canceled in an effort to reduce the credit card bill.
The good news is, you don’t need to surrender. You can win! If you’ve got the skills to make the sale, you know what to do to create a new member onboarding communication sequence.
We face a similar challenge when selling memberships with free trial memberships. Keeping the customer excited for the 7-30 days of the free trail so it converts to paid is the challenge. I’ve worked with five clients over the last three months designing new member stick sequences designed to get free trial members to convert into paid members. The most important piece is to think of these new members as “prospective members.”
Use the free trial as a chance to build a relationship, help the new member believe that your membership is for him and help him experience value. Pour over the communication your member receives after he joins with the same care and concern as you do the sales letter and order form.
How many people review your a sales campaign before it goes out the door? I’m guessing there’s a lot of scrutiny about those messages, the copy gets tweaked several times and you may even have some high priced copywriters engaged to give you their opinion on your copy. Compare that with the scrutiny for the copy that goes out after your new member joins.
How many people have reviewed your new member email? This email often has a higher open rate than any other email you’ll ever send a member. Wouldn’t you want to make sure it’s the best email he could see? And, what about your monthly fulfillment? Does as much care go into it as does your sales materials?
Here’s the first there elements of my new member welcome sequence. I’ve found that these not only convert more free trial members into paid members. It also helps you overcome the “Credit Card Moment of Truth.”
Dream – Most membership marketers flip right into delivering customers what they purchased. There was some dream, some outcome you promised in your marketing materials. Incorporate that dream into your new member onboarding to remind your customer what life can be life when he or she uses what you deliver.
Belief – When confronted with your product, it become overwhelming. Customers already have too much to do and use. Why do they want more from you? Help them recognize that it only requires baby steps to get tremendous value from what you deliver.
Goal – Help your customers get moving with a small incremental goal. Too often we are trying to get them to believe they can change their lives in some big, huge way. Most people prefer their changes in small doses. Help him make an incremental goal first, that’ll make it more believable that he can make it happen.
Do your new member welcome sequences included these elements? Do they get your customer excited about solving a problem in her life? Does it help her believe that she can do it? And, does it help her set an incremental goal to get started?
If not, you are losing out on free trial conversions and most importantly, you are too often ending up on the wrong side of the Credit Card Moment of Truth!