Thursday, December 4, 2008

Internet Marketing and Membership Sites

Internet Marketing and Membership Sites

By Scott Lindsay

Membership websites are a great way to develop wealth online. The reason this is true is that online marketing has discovered an entirely new consumable product - content.

This component of content in Internet marketing can take on a life of its own, and that's where a membership website comes into the picture.

Look at it this way. You have worked to develop a broad base of content that has proven very successful in traffic building objectives. You've been providing this content buffet for free for a long time now and your constituents are pleased with the information.

OK, what if you developed a 'golden tier' service that is available to members only? What if you charged modestly for the membership? What if 20% of your site visitors became members?

Let's put this into practical terms. If you have 10,000 regular site visitors a month and 2,000 of them became members at $5 per member. That allows the content you've already developed to provide $1,000 a month from a built in consumer base.

Now, you can't just leave the membership site alone. You will need to make sure visitors have the opportunity to access regular content that is fresh and relevant to the site goals and customer expectations.

If you are a great writer this may never be an issue, but if you need help imagine setting aside $200 a month for freelance writing purposes. Add the fresh content to keep customers happy and you still have a sizeable profit from your membership site.

Imagine - no product fulfillment or postage issues. Everything is done online and membership fees are sent electronically.

In the words of almost every infomercial, "But wait, there's more." You can place banner ads and Google AdSense ads to your site and, in many cases, pay for any freelance work you may use.

The idea is to continue to find inexpensive, but valued tools and content for your members. You absolutely cannot keep your membership site static. This is Internet marketing at its best and it's got to be continually fresh and useful.

As the membership site grows so does your profits - so does your responsibility to your members. Inattention can spell the end of your site. Work to recycle content into member's only ebooks. The ebook will have more perceived value than the same content scattered over a large number of web pages.

If in the course of the next year you can increase memberships to 5,000 you can see a monthly revenue stream of $2,500 with expenses that will be only slightly higher than if there were only 2,000 members. Then consider developing another membership site featuring a new topic and new content welcoming new customers.

Allow members to interact by offering a forum that allows members to share experiences and tips. Allow members to become a community. By paying a fee they have a vested interest in utilizing your site. You might even be able to identify motivated members and enlist them to help you moderate the forum and contribute to the site. This can be accomplished because they love your site and want to help or because you offer a sum of money or free membership for their services.

Membership sites may not be for everyone, but it can be a logical leap forward when you've learned the skills of Internet marketing.

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1 comment:

John Smith said...

Thank you for such wonderful and interesting article.

Advance Internet Marketing Ignition