How to Make (More) Money Online Using the Membership/Product Hybrid Strategy
Continuity programs that provide ongoing revenue are the ultimate product – when they work. In fact they sound amazing in theory – create a membership site, throw up some new content every week or so and get paid month after month. But let’s face it, memberships do not work in every case.
Unless you’re selling access to web hosting or a vital piece of software, people are going to consider your membership to be something of a luxury item. This means when they want to save a few dollars, your membership is going to be the first thing they cancel if you’re not delivering amazing value month after month.
Conversely, creating a one-time sale product such as a book or recording means you have to make new sales to get new payments. They pay you once, they get the product, and until you create your next product and offer it to them, there’s no more income from that customer (selling affiliate products aside.)
However, it is far, far easier to sell products that are one time payments than it is to sell memberships that go on forever.
That’s why I’d like to suggest a hybrid of the two, sort of the best of both worlds.
Choose a problem that your niche is trying to solve. This should be something significant that takes time and education, like increasing traffic to their website. If your topic is too simple – removing a wart, for example – it won’t work for this hybrid model.
In addition, you want a topic that is highly VALUABLE to the customer. Again, getting traffic to their website is a good example because significantly increasing traffic can mean a substantial increase to their bottom line.
Now then, create your product in installments. For example, you might be teaching 12 different traffic methods, so you can create 12 videos, one on each method. Or you might do 12 modules with several videos in each, depending on how in-depth you are going.
You are going to release your installments one at a time – for example, one every certain number of days. Weekly is good, but you may find that 5 days or even 10 days works better in your case.
Write your killer sales letter, and offer two payment options: One is to pay in full and the other is to make payments. So if you’re charging $199 for the course, you might offer an option of 3 payments at $75. This way they get a discount if they pay in full, but you’ll get more orders because you also take payments.
And as long as you deliver on your promises, you’ll likely find that the vast majority of those who opt to make payments do indeed make all of them, whether you are taking payments over 2 months, 3 months or even longer, so long as it’s a fixed term.
Should anyone cancel before they make all of their payments, they will lose access. It’s up to you if they lose access to the entire course, or only to the portions they did not pay for. Personally I would opt for the second choice.
Another option is to hold back bonuses until the final payment is made. For example, if you’re selling a product with an option of 4 monthly payments, then the customers get the bonuses once they’ve made that fourth payment and no sooner.
I think you’ll find that by taking payments on higher priced programs, you will make more money than if you sold inexpensive programs or if you sold memberships. And just like any product, you can create it once and continue to sell it for years to come.
This means you can set up a new profit stream as often as you choose – you could release a new product every month if you like, or even more often if you outsource.
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