Do you want to take your blog to the next level? If you want to build a community around your blog, increase the value of your content, and generate more income from your blog, then you should consider turning your blog into a membership site.
What is a membership site? A membership site is a gated part of your website, behind that gate is exclusive blog content, podcasts, videos, courses, or forums. To get access to that special content, users have to sign up. Some membership sites allow users to sign up for free while others charge a monthly fee for access.
Transforming your blog into a membership site that charges a monthly fee will allow you to generate a steady stream of predictable income. In addition, you’ll turn your blog into a true community and present yourself as a thought leader in your niche.
When your content is so good that it’s under lock and key, people will rush to join your exclusive club.
And don’t worry, creating a membership site might seem complicated, but it’s actually not. Here’s how to turn your blog into an exclusive membership site.
Choose a WordPress plugin.
You might think that turning your blog into a membership site would be a difficult task that requires a complete overhaul of your website, but that’s not the case. If you’re running your blog on WordPress, the most popular content management system in the world, you can easily transform it into a membership site in an instant with a WordPress plugin. After downloading and activating a membership site plugin, you can transform your current blog into a membership site in just a few steps.
It’s important though, that you choose a membership plugin that has all the features you need to run a successful membership site.
There are a number of powerful and easy-to-use membership plugins on the market. Do some research and make sure the membership plugin you choose allows you to accept payments, create membership levels, restrict content based on membership levels, create pricing pages for your membership site, get analytics reporting, and more. The best membership plugins should allow you to create a membership site that meets your exact needs.
Plan your membership model.
Before you completely set up your membership site, you need to first plan your membership model. This means that you need to decide what type of exclusive content you’re going to be offering your members and how you’ll offer it up. The 3 main elements of a membership model are:
Content – The main type of content you’ll be offering such as premium written content, courses, resource library, community/forum, etc.
Delivery – The way your content will be delivered. Either instant, where the user gets access to everything at once with no new content typically added, ongoing, where new content is released on an ongoing basis, or drip, where content is released at scheduled intervals.
Access – The type of access to your content a user is given. For instance, regular monthly payments for access, lifetime access, fixed-term, or pay-as-you-go.
Plan out what the membership model of your membership site will be. Because you’re just starting out, choose a membership model that’s easy for you to create and manage. For instance, you might not want to create an in-depth online course right away. Instead, test the waters by offering exclusive written content. Then, as your membership site grows you can introduce more expensive membership levels that give users access to more valuable content.
Set your prices.
Next, you need to set your prices for your membership site. Finding the magical number that your audience is willing to pay and that’s equal to the value you’re providing takes time and thought. You don’t want to charge too much for your membership site because you’ll scare people away or they’ll be upset if the value of the content doesn’t meet their expectations for the price they paid. On the other hand, you don’t want to undercharge either. Your time and expertise are valuable.
You also have to consider what type of content you’re offering because that also plays a part in setting your price. For example, if you’re offering an in-depth online course to members, you’d likely want to charge a higher membership fee than if you were only offering exclusive articles.
So, one easy way to come up with a good price for your membership site is by doing some research on your competitors. Take a look at some other membership blogs that are similar to yours. Compare the content, value, and price with what you’re offering. This will help you determine how you should price your own exclusive content.
Promote your membership site.
If you want people to join your membership site, you’ve got to let them know it exists. Your email subscribers should be the first to know about it; since they’re already fans of yours, they’ll be more likely to sign up. So, before you even launch your membership site, let your subscribers know it’s coming. Create a coming soon page on your website and come up with an email campaign to let your email list subscribers know something exciting is on the way.
You’ll also want to promote your new membership site to others as well, in order to attract even more new members. So, create posts on social media using relevant hashtags to widen your reach. Another great way to promote your membership site is with live video. Live video allows you to get in front of a ton of users at once and creates the feel of an exciting launch party. In a live video on Instagram or Facebook, you can let your viewers know about all of the exciting things they can expect. Plus, with live video, your audience can ask any questions they have and you can answer them in real-time.
Over to you.
See, turning your blog into an exclusive membership site isn’t so hard after all. What was once a casual blog with unpredictable income, can now become a strong community full of engagement and a steady stream of revenue for you. Enjoy your new members-only club!